The Sustainability Council's Student Commiitee views halting and reversing anthropogenic climate change as a major challenge facing Penn State, the commonwealth, nation, and global society, for which we believe the College of Earth and Mineral Sciences is most suited to provide leadership.
We recognize that we face environmental, political, and societal threats, including those that motivated the creation of the United Nations Sustainable Development Goals (UN SDGs). We believe that students in the college can play by their strengths and contribute in numerous areas to address these threats. The goals of the student committee are:
- Creating awareness among the students about sustainability initiatives in the College and the EMS Sustainability Council’s work.
- Collecting requests and action items related to sustainability from the EMS student body to present to the council.
- Assisting and collaborating with any other sustainability related activity taking place in the college.
During the spring 2023 semester, the EMS Sustainability Council organized a tree planting activity to restore formerly mined land in Sandy Ridge, PA. This was a joint effort consisting of students from the College of Earth and Mineral Sciences, Green Forests Work (non-profit tree planting organization), Moshannon Creek Watershed Association (non-profit corporation), and Pennsylvania Department of Environmental Protection (DEP). The mine landowner was interested in being part of the Appalachian Regional Reforestation Initiative to restore forest cover using the Forestry Reclamation Approach (FRA). The 5 steps taken in this approach are:
- Creating suitable reforestation growth medium
- Minimizing compaction of the growth medium
- Planting tree compatible ground plants
- Planting native trees
- Using proper tree planting techniques
3500 native trees were donated by the Chesapeake Bay Foundation as part of their Keystone 10 million Trees Partnership to restore the formerly mined land that was inadequately reclaimed in 2007. Since the site was located on the Allegheny Front, the dominant natural land cover was hardwood forest. The goal was to help restore the site to its original pre-mining land cover type. Hence, native trees such as sugar maple and black cherry were a few of the chosen variety of trees that were planted.
Chair: Harman Singh (Graduate student in Geography and Climate Science) - email: email@example.com
Undergraduate student members
- Westin Boyd (Meteorology and Atmospheric Science)
- Rasha Elwakil (Earth Science and Policy)
- Irena Potochny (Materials Science and Engineering)
- Kendyl Ramsay (Division of Undergraduate Studies)
Graduate student members
- Emma Cheriegate (Geography)
- Tsunami Sharmba (Environmental Systems Engineering)
- Olivia Spencer (Geography)
Collaborate with the Student Committee
The Student Committee is always open to new ideas and events so feel free to email them.
If you would like to collaborate with us on future events email Harman Singh at firstname.lastname@example.org. It would be helpful if the email also contained information such as an event name and a short bio, timeline, and generally what resources would be required.
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