How green is Frosh Week?

Whether it’s refilling a metal water bottle or registering online, there’s a growing green mindset towards orientation activities at Queen’s.

“There’s an overall attitude of sustainability that has really permeated all the way through and throughout Orientation Weeks,” said Orientation Round Table (ORT) Coordinator, Dmitri Tchebotarev.

The Orientation Round Table (ORT) is the central coordinating body for all undergraduate orientation weeks at the University.

In line with the University’s 2011 decision to ban the sale of bottled water on campus, no Frosh Week event is allowed to distribute plastic water bottles.

Each Orientation Week event is planned through a “Green Events Checklist.” A form with a section on sustainability must be submitted and signed by the president of the faculty society, the faculty dean, and Tchebotarev, ArtSci ’13.

A new Sustainability Fund this year given by the Queen’s Sustainability Office could also help Orientation Committees make their events more sustainable, he said.

$2,000 a year is allocated or distributed between Orientation Committees.

A Sustainability Office representative, the ORT Sustainability Director, and the ORT Coordinator, will together choose the recipient of the fund.

Money will be given to the orientation initiative that is the most environmentally sustainable.

The recipient of this year’s fund has yet to be chosen. So far the Arts and Science Undergraduate Society (ASUS) Orientation Committee has applied for the grant, as well as the Engineering Society Orientation Committee.

This year, ASUS Orientation Week requested funding for their USB initiative, which involved loading over 2,000 USB keys with information from the frosh handbook, saving 46,000 pages from being printed.

The USB keys were then sent to Arts and Science students along with a condensed version of the frosh handbook, said Aanjalie Collure, Head Gael for Orientation Week 2012.

Collure, ArtSci ’13, added that a continued initiative from last year will be to give Sidewalk Sale vendors the opportunity to upload any pamphlets they wished to distribute online.

This year, under 20 vendors opted to put them online. “Obviously not all of the vendors took that opportunity, but a lot of them did and we saw a reduction of pamphlets and a reduction of garbage,” she said.

—Rosie Hales

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