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Earth Day focuses on Sustainability for High, Junior High School Students

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SUNY Sullivan hosted an Earth Day Celebration Wednesday, welcoming local high school and junior high school students to the campus to learn more about sustainability at the College and in their community. Students from the Homestead School, Liberty and Monticello School Districts, and Sullivan County BOCES took part in presentations and tabling from local environmental and sustainable development organizations, an ecology walk on the College’s Woodland Trail, a sustainability tour of Hope Farm and the geothermal, wind, and solar systems on campus, and enjoyed some time outside in the courtyard with animals from BeaverWood Farm and Buck Brook Alpacas.

The celebration was sponsored by the SUNY Sullivan Liberty Partnership Program,  SUNY Sullivan’s Sustainability Committee, Student Activities Office  Participants included the Basha Kill Area Association, Catskill Mountainkeeper, the National Park Service, SUNY Sullivan Admissions, Sullivan County Audubon Society, Sullivan Alliance Leading Together, Sullivan County Division of Planning, Sullivan County Public Health, SUNY Sullivan Garden Club, SUNY Sullivan Apiary, New Hope Community’s Hope Farm, Friends of the Upper Delaware River, Morgan Outdoors, New York State Department of Environmental Conversation, and Story’s Neversink Plant Co.

“In early 2022, SUNY Sullivan joined the University Global Coalition and committed to share and promote the United Nations Sustainable Development Goals with all our students, staff, and community,” said SUNY Sullivan Sustainability Coordinator Larry Reeger. “We are extremely happy with how the students and local vendors interacted with each other and discussed sustainable development goals.”

“I think the students enjoy being on the campus,” said SUNY Sullivan LPP Director Valerie Brescia, who said one of LPP’s goals is to get students more acclimated to the College’s campus. “With more access, I think they become more curious about college.”

“I think the event went very well,” said LPP Assistant Coordinator for Special Educational Programs John Galdun, who said he saw students asking a lot of questions. “The students really got into the walk, the speakers, and all the facilitators at the tables.”

The farm animals, tabling events, and woodland trail hike, led by Eugene Thalmann from Catskill Mountainkeeper, were well attended, Reeger said, and the SUNY Sullivan Sustainable Development Goals Passport, given out to each student who attended, was a huge hit.

“Each student was given a SUNY Sullivan Sustainable Development Goals Passport, which depicted all 17 UN Sustainable Development Goals,” said SUNY Sullivan Instructional Assistant and Community Garden Coordinator Kathryn Scullion. “As students visited the tables of the various organizations, they had the relevant goals on their passports punched. When they had at least 12 goals punched, they were entered into a raffle.”

“Many of the organizations who participated are helping our community to achieve one or more of the United Nations sustainability goals,” Reeger said.

To learn more about SUNY Liberty Partnership Program, visit sunysullivan.edu/liberty-partnerships-program. To learn more about Sustainability at SUNY Sullivan, visit sunysullivan.edu/sustainability-at-sullivan.

About SUNY Sullivan

SUNY Sullivan is the leader of innovative higher education and a catalyst for workforce development throughout the Sullivan Catskills and beyond. Our diverse community cultivates personal growth and professional advancement, preparing students for success in a sustainable and interconnected world. A forward-looking, top-tier community college in New York, SUNY Sullivan offers over 40 degree programs, certificates, and micro-credentials for learners at all levels of their educational goals. We value critical inquiry and creativity while supporting our students in a culture of inclusion and respect. For more information, visit sunysullivan.edu

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