Connecticut College Sustainability Office Seeks to Solve Problems in Holistic Way

Aug 8, 2013

Connecticut College's new Office of Sustainability allows students and staff to think about sustainability in an original way. The office looks at sustainability in three connected parts: environmental, economic, and social.

For example, something like across-the-board recycling can be extremely effective. In addition to reducing pollution, it saved the school money. Some $80 dollars per ton. Sustainability Manager Josh Stoffel is leading the effort: “A lot of these things, whether you think that they are really just an environmental thing, or really just a humanitarian thing, or really just a way to save money and help the bottom line, is really that if you approach them in the correct way, are actually truly holistic, sustainable projects," he says. The office is involved in curriculum, on campus itself, and in the community. "Sustainability ties across many different disciplines, and so, for me, at least, I am interested in social equity," says student Molly Pachay, who is very active in the program. "The looking at how sustainability ties into economic feasibility and environmental well being.” Connecticut College addresses its issues by linking, all under the umbrella of sustainability, seemingly unalike subjects such as recycling projects, along with reading workshops for middle schoolers.  The Office is still being defined, but the goal is clear: To help the college approach any sort of challenge it may face in a holistically sustainable way.