That’s such a waste of food, Bucknell.

At the Sustainability Symposium, it was interesting to learn to see how people viewed and defined sustainability differently. I presented a project I was working on in my MSUS400 class, where we are looking at organizational development. In the class, I see sustainability as the efficient and effectiveness of the stakeholder network in an organization, since communication is one of the key things any organization needs to be sustainable. As I was walking around and looking at the posters on various projects other people have been working on, it was interesting to see how much your field of study plays an influence in how you perceive sustainability and the green movement.

One project that caught my attention was the Food Waste Reduction program at Dickinson College. What was interesting was how the organization and movement started at Dickinson. When the question was asked, “What were some challenges you faced in order to start your project?” They answer, “we did not take ‘no’ as an answer.” The Dickinson student group received a lot of resistance from the university when they were trying to implement this program to reduce food waste in their dinning halls and make compost from the wasted food that can be used in their college farm. She said that at first their proposal was denied by administration, but the group decided to not listen and did it without approval. She said, “don’t take no for an answer if you are fighting for what you believe in and passionate about” and now Dickinson has a successful program that collects about 700 lbs of food waste per day. In their program they have Student Food Waste leaders in their residential halls in charge of coordinating the events to spread awareness. Along with raising awareness, they plan various events like competitions between halls to get people interesting. It got me wondering about our own campus and how much food is actually wasted each day. Bucknell normally would throw away any leftover food from events and the café and it seems very wasteful. Do you think this would be a program that would possible on Bucknell’s campus? OR What are some ways you can think of on how we can reduce food waste?

It was a coincidence as I walked around the poster section; I noticed a Bucknell student has been thinking about how to food waste reduction on campus. Her idea was utilizing Greek Life organizations to help reduce waste. She saw Greek Life as an opportunity, more specifically fraternities, because they are the ones who have their own chef and food, so she wanted to implement Greek Life composting first and in hopes it will cause a ripple effect on campus. Based on her research and her own experience, Greek Life has a large presence on our campus and has some influence on decision-making. She wanted to start out on a smaller scale with one or two frat to collect data about its effectiveness. In the long run she see that with the participation of Greek Life it can start to pick up and the university would become more interested in implementing it on a larger scale. Do you think this initiative is more feasible in building interest and creating a successful program?

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