First "Life Long Learning" Event Offers Green Ideas to Alumni

How can Moravian become proactive and engage alumni? What additional perks can the College provide to its graduated students? These essential questions spawned the Lifelong Learning Committee (LLL)—an initiative of the Alumni Board to provide relevant, interactive learning opportunities beyond the undergraduate years.

On March 14, 2009, the LLL presented the first installment of this initiative entitled, "Moravian Green: Voices of Sustainability." More than fifty alumni gathered in the Priscilla Payne Hurd Academic Complex to discuss green initiatives on campus, long-term sustainability of the global environment, and opportunities for local sustainability.

After a continental breakfast and brief words from Joe Castellano ’61, Alumni Board president, Tom Repasch ’72, emcee for the day, introduced Frank Kuserk, professor of biological sciences and director of environmental studies, who shared Moravian’s efforts to "go green." Thanks in large part to students who sparked the campus sustainability movement and to the generous endowment of Jon Soden ’91, the Moravian community strives daily to become "a community of wise stewards, who care for and enhance our treasures of heritage, people, and place for generations to come."

Hilde Binford, assistant professor of music, accelerated the conversation to a global level with the interactive exercise, "The Wedge Game." Groups used information regarding possible carbon reduction efforts to decide how to approach reducing carbon emissions over the next decade. Enlightened participants experienced the difficult decisions policy makers and activists face.

On a lighter note, Linda Shay-Gardner ’74, Kelly Rindock ’03, Alexis Slavish ’83, Christy Melby-Gibbons, and Jamie Marks ’04 shared their individual efforts to live sustainably. Participants constructed crafts made entirely of recycled and reused materials, learned ways to reuse materials for everyday purposes, observed the benefits of urban planting/community gardens, and received information regarding Community Supported Agriculture (CSA) www.localharvest.org.

The day concluded with questions for a panel of sustainability experts: Professor Hilde Binford; Peter Crownfield, director of Lehigh Valley Alliance for Sustainable Communities; Christie Melby-Gibbons, candidate for master's of divinity; and Wendy Body, senior project manager for Alvin H. Butz, Inc. "Every little thing we do has an impact," emphasized Peter Crownfield. Moravian is not only taking steps to ensure its impact on the environment is responsible, but also that the impact on alumni is responsible through lifelong learning. Many thanks go to Jamie Marks and her Life Long Learning committee for a job well done.

—Scott Heydt ’02

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