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Green Team Receives Kansas Day Grant

Southwestern College has announced that students in the Green Team program will be coordinating service activities as part of Kansas Day 2010.  These activities are part of the inaugural Kansas Campus Compact’s Commemorate Kansas/Serve Kansas program.  A $750 grant has been awarded to SC from the Kansas Campus Compact.                             

Students from the Southwestern College Green Team will develop and give educational presentations on sustainability in Kansas to Cowley County middle and high school students. Scope of the presentations will include the history of Kansas as a leader in agriculture and sustainable living in the past as well as practical suggestions for sustainable living now and into the future. The project will culminate with a presentation of renewable energy at the Southwestern College biology field station.

“I think that Kansas has a responsibility to become leaders in sustainability and renewable energy,” says Jason Speegle, Green Team director at Southwestern.  “We possess a renewable resource in the wind that has the potential to provide clean energy to hundreds of thousands of homes across our state and nation. I also think that we have a responsibility to live within our means with regards to the earth’s resources and teach our young people to do the same.”

Southwestern College recently purchased a 2.5-kilowatt solar array and a 200-watt wind turbine to provide all of the power for the biology field station.  The students will be allowed to tour the field station and see firsthand how renewable energy functions. The Southwestern biology field station is located on 240 acres of land approximately 10 miles north of Winfield. It will provide the students with a combination of Kansas’s past and present (agriculture) and its future (renewable energy generation). The Southwestern College 2010 Commemorate Kansas/Serve Kansas project will take place Jan. 28.

The Commemorate Kansas/Serve Kansas program was created to promote higher education participation in activities that foster a greater appreciation for Kansas history and promote opportunities for students, faculty, and community members to do measurable, meaningful, sustainable service to their communities in support of the Kansas State Historical Society’s efforts to commemorate the 149th Kansas Day.  

Six other institutions participating in the Commemorate Kansas/Serve Kansas program are Butler Community College, Fort Hays State University, Garden City Community College, Hutchinson Community College, Kansas State University, and Seward County Community College.

“These creative projects are an indication that students and faculty at Kansas colleges and universities are aware of the importance of connecting their education with a civic purpose that serves all of Kansas’ citizens,” said Matthew Lindsey, executive director for Kansas Campus Compact.

Headquartered in Manhattan, Kansas Campus Compact is a coalition of higher education committed to strengthening the collective commitment and capacity of leaders at colleges and universities to integrate civic engagement and responsibility into the higher educational curriculum and environment.

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