The Sustainability Project at GSU

According to its  mission statement, the Student Government Association (SGA) is “The official voice of students in academic, institutional and community affairs,” according to their mission statement. They are committed to everything concerning the student.  They are committed to everything concerning the student.

These issues include aid with parking, organizing school events, student affairs, but their main concern is student freedom. SGA believes in self-governance, our ability to make informed decisions as an individual.

Part of that freedom involves  providing easier accessibility to act on it, which led to the many service projects created through the club.

With this statement in mind, a group of freshmen students has  started an SGA service project to improve our ability to be sustainable here at Georgia State.

Jennifer Wilson, Georgia State’s manager of Sustainability Initiatives, organizes the project. She first started working in January of this year but has already become incredibly immersed in the functions of building here on campus.

Working closely with the students, the group has attempted to streamline the recycling process.

“Many students want to recycle but aren’t aware of how to do it on campus. We’re hoping to restructure the system, which is a slow process but will hopefully create change,” Elle, a student on the project, explained.

In its current state, most recycling bins are  strewn around, with few indicators of it being a recycling bin. The SGA is reorganizing recycling bins to combat this, having more of them while making them  more presentable.

Elle further explains the process, “We’re adding labels with simple instructions to the bins, this way, anyone can contribute and know how to recycle correctly.”

The scope of this current project is on the building and utilities on Georgia State’s Atlanta Campus with a focus on Classroom South and University Commons. Communication with the staff has been a constant, proving incredibly helpful as they implement their ideas into the buildings.

It’s easy to look at this service project and only think of it as affecting students and staff on campus, yet Georgia State isn’t any average  campus.

“Since most of the Georgia State campus is a part of downtown, bringing students to the habit of taking care of their environments while on campus.”

“By guiding them with the Sustainability Project, they could also be inhabited outside the campus and become a part of their daily lives, ”said Tala, another student on the project.

The service project is a lot bigger than the school, and it’s the hope of those involved to create actual social change within the downtown community.

Sustainability is important, and it allows us to create less damage to the Earth while envisioning a brighter future.

“If we want to take care of our peers, loved ones, and even ourselves, taking care of the natural things we have been given is very important,” said Tala.

It may only be the beginning, but the seeds of accessible sustainability have already been planted for this community.