SUNY Sullivan hosted its annual Earth Day Celebration Friday, April 28, welcoming local high school and middle school students to the campus to learn more about sustainability at the College and in their community. Approximately 60 students from Liberty and Monticello school districts took part in presentations and tabling from local environmental and sustainable development organizations, workshops on birdwatching and beekeeping, an ecology walk on the College’s trail network, and a sustainability tour of Hope Farm and the College’s renewable energy systems.
The students began the day with a keynote talk by Sullivan County Acting Commissioner of Planning, Community Development & Environmental Management Heather Brown, and Dwayne R. Norris, Chief Operating Officer and Co-Founder of Soulful Synergy. They also enjoyed some time outside in the courtyard with farm animals from BeaverWood Farm.
The celebration was sponsored by the SUNY Sullivan Liberty Partnership Program, SUNY Sullivan’s Sustainability Committee, and Student Activities Office.
Part of the statewide Liberty Partnership Program, SUNY Sullivan LPP and its community-based partners help underserved and underperforming area youth become college- and career-ready, through year-round mentoring, tutoring, study skills classes, ESL support, field trips, and admissions and financial aid workshops, as well as a Summer Program at the College. Civic responsibility, leadership skills, and volunteerism are also highlighted, and LPP students participate in service-learning projects that improve their communities.
SUNY Sullivan LPP Project Director Valerie Brescia said the Earth Day Celebration, Summer Program, and other field trips are aimed at broadening the students’ horizons, sparking their interest in, and becoming more familiar with college.
The Earth Day event included raffle prizes for the students, a lunch- packaged in eco-friendly materials, and reusable water bottles with SUNY Sullivan and LPP’s logos.
Organizations tabling at the event reported that the students were more engaged than ever this year, said Community Garden Coordinator Kathryn Scullion, who is a member of the College’s Sustainability Committee and a coordinator of the event.
Participants included the Basha Kill Area Association, Catskill Mountainkeeper, the National Park Service, SUNY Sullivan Admissions, SUNY Sullivan Career Center, Sullivan County Audubon Society, Sullivan Alliance Leading Together, Sullivan County Division of Planning, Sullivan County Public Health, Sullivan County Recycling, Sullivan County Office of Sustainable Energy, SUNY Sullivan Garden Club, SUNY Sullivan Apiary, SUNY Sullivan Green Building Program, New Hope Community’s Hope Farm, Friends of the Upper Delaware River, Morgan Outdoors, New York State Department of Environmental Conservation, Story’s Neversink Plant Co., Cornell Cooperative Extension, Sullivan 180, Fidelis Care, the Watershed Agricultural Council, LaBella Associates, New York Power Authority, New Yorkers for Clean Power, C.R. Wolfe, Communities for Local Power, and the New York State Department of Labor.
For information on sustainability at SUNY Sullivan, please visit sunysullivan.edu/sustainable-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.
April 28, 2023.