Green is beautiful, especially when it involves dollars to help in the environmental effort of a growing university, West Liberty University.
“I’m pleased to announce that the Green Initiative Committee (GIC), of which I serve as chairman, was awarded a 2014 Recycling Assistance Grant from the West Virginia Department of Environmental Protection, for $24,760,” said Professor of English Dr. David Thomas. “The Department of Environmental Protection Cabinet Secretary Randy Huffman presented me with a beautiful framed certificate to commemorate the grant.”
“We commend West Liberty University for its achievements in creating a cleaner, more sustainable environment,” said Sandra D. Rogers, Recycling Assistance Grant Program (REAP) manager, located in Charleston, W.Va.
Other members of the green committee include WLU employees, Lihua Chen, Melissa Hudson, Aron Massey, Travis Miller, Jill Nixon, Anna Stephan-Robinson, Theunis van Aardt and Tracy Zang.
“We are excited to see new initiatives developing within our educational system and believe that all universities should incorporate recycling programs into their standard operations. These new recycling initiatives are necessary to expose the next generation on ways to achieve sustainability,” added Rogers.
“We are thrilled to be awarded this grant, as it will allow our voluntary recycling program to grow from its infancy into a full-fledged, mandatory program. In order to achieve this goal, much logistical planning will need to be done by the committee, in conjunction with the WLU maintenance and human resources departments, along with our WFF facility service and Republic Recycling. We hope to have the entire program up-and-running by the beginning of the fall 2014 term,” Thomas said.
The grant money will be used to assist with the purchase of recycling storage buildings, recycling containers, a utility vehicle, recycling bags and an industrial scale.
WLU has been working on its green initiative for several years now in an effort to encourage its students, employees and the community to get involved in recycling and environmental issues, while promoting a healthy campus environment. Sorority members, Beta Rho Epsilon, got involved too and have been collecting paper and other recyclables throughout the fall semester in both academic and administrative buildings.
The West Virginia Legislature made it possible to offer the REAP program through a $1 fee imposed on every ton of solid waste disposed of at state landfills. Rules governing the program are under State Rule 33CSR10. The funds are available to any county, municipality, public or private entity in West Virginia interested in planning and implementing recycling programs, related public educational programs or needing assistance in recycling market efforts.
West Liberty University is a forward-looking, four-year public university steeped in a rich heritage as West Virginia’s oldest institution of higher education. Five colleges — the College of Arts and Communication, the College of Education, the College of Liberal Arts, the College of Science and the Gary E. West College of Business — offer more than 60 majors and 30 programs that are nationally recognized or accredited. Graduate programs include the Master of Arts in Education and the Master of Science in Physician Assistant Studies program. For more information, please visit www.westliberty.edu or call 1.866.WESTLIB.