Westminster Continues Efforts to Be a Greener Campus With New EcoHall
BY STEFANIE EGGLESTON
Members of EcoHouse are working to create an environmentally friendly residence hall called EcoHall. Originally suggested by President Akande, the hall will be located in Emerson, and its residents will partner with members of EcoHouse to pursue projects to make the campus more sustainable.
“We’ve talked to our advisor, Dr. Unger, Jackie Weber and Dan Haslag about this possibility,” said Nathan Fox, ’16, resident of EcoHouse. “They are all very excited and have been the key to pushing us closer and closer towards it becoming a reality.”
According to an email sent by EcoHouse, those accepted into EcoHouse will fulfill leadership roles, while residents of EcoHall will support the members of EcoHouse. Together, the groups will work to push for greener initiatives and projects on campus.
The current president of Environmentally Concerned Students, Jack DeArmey, ’19, said he jumped at the opportunity to live in EcoHouse next year. He looks forward to the joint efforts made between the house and the hall to create a greener campus.
“Even small things are going to add up to bigger things in the end,” he said. “If we can get more people involved in that, then we can make our campus a better place to be living.”
EcoHall is just the latest example of EcoHouse’s efforts to make Westminster greener. Last year, EcoHouse passed the Efficiency Fund, which collects $15 per student each semester to fund projects that make Westminster’s campus more environmentally friendly and sustainable. So far, it has paid for Dyson hand dryers in the HAC and JCI bathrooms, LED lights in HAC Gym, and occupancy-sensor light switches in the quad bathrooms.
After financing these projects, the fund still has $9,000. EcoHouse has been accepting suggestions from students and faculty to decide how this money should be spent or if it should be rolled over into next year’s fund. If rolled over, the fund can potentially go toward bigger, more expensive projects for the future.
The final decision of how this money will be used is decided by The Green Council, a group of administrators, faculty, students and President Akande. The group meets about twice a year to evaluate the college’s efforts towards sustainability and how Westminster can become a greener campus.
While the final decision of what the Efficiency Fund money goes to is up to the Green Council, members of EcoHouse hope to eventually see solar panels providing some of our energy and LED lights in the parking lots.
Anyone interested in making Westminster a more ecologically friendly and sustainable place to live is welcome to apply to be a resident of EcoHouse or EcoHall for next year. Applications have been sent out by email and are due Thursday, Feb. 11 by 3 p.m.