Flashback to my very first visit to Luther; it’s the dead of winter, that time in January when you’re still okay with having snow on the ground and your blood has finally thickened enough to withstand the wintry chill that seeps into your bones. I had just finished my first semester finals that week (my high school unfortunately had finals after Christmas break) and as a “reward” for all my hard work I got to go on a series of college visits all chaotically packed into a single long weekend.
For a kid that needs vacations/breaks in order to function, I was less than thrilled for a weekend of long car rides and the same-old college tour experiences of eating in the cafeteria, visiting various buildings and sitting in on classes.
I know this is the part of the story where I’m suppose to tell you how my visit to Luther was extraordinary and how all my sulking and malcontent instantly vanished upon my arrival on campus. However, I’m not cliché and if you’ve read any of my blogs, you’ll know that I don’t sugar coat things or hold back on the sarcasm.
Quite honestly, my visit to Luther was very similar to every other visit I had gone on; I ate in the Caf, I toured Valders and the Regent Center, and I sat in on a class. Big shocker, I know.
The tour was routine and it had gone well, so I added Luther to the list of schools I would apply to. In the notes I took about each college I visited, I also wrote something unique about the school, adding for Luther, “Has its own wind turbine!”
Looking back on my notes now it is amazing to see how this one unique aspect of Luther has shaped a good portion of my freshman experience. While I had inferred that Luther owning a wind turbine must translate to other sustainable practices on campus, I honestly had no idea just how integral sustainability was to the culture on campus.
From composting in the Caf, to vegetables from the Luther gardens, to electric campus vehicles, Luther is the real deal when it comes to promoting environmentally friendly practices. Whether you want an awesome work study job like mine on the Garden Crew or Caf to Community squad, or you’re interested in learning more about all the progress-in-action on campus, check out Luther’s Center for Sustainable Communities or like Luther Sustainability on Facebook.
While there are so many exciting projects dealing with environmental issues on campus ranging from food production and waste to energy efficiency in the dorms and buildings, a lot of people just don’t realize how much fantastic work is actually being done. And you don’t have to be someone like me who lives and breathes “eco” stuff and hugs trees. The beauty (and also struggle) of environmental issues is that we all contribute to them and so each and everyone of us needs to be involved in helping to solve them!
With Mother’s Day only a week away, I’m reminded of what my own mom always says, Every day should be Mother’s Day because you should always appreciate, respect, and be kind to your mother.
By that same token every day, not just April 22, should be Earth Day. A little more appreciation, respect, and kindness towards our mothers and Mother Earth would go a long way towards solving the problems our world faces.