Stories produced by students in the Meek School of Journalism & New Media
With the semester winding down at Ole Miss, Students for a Green Campus (SGC) are working harder than ever to raise awareness for the Green Fund.
“The Green Fund is a pool of money that is comprised of university funds and donations from students, faculty and staff that fund proposals for sustainability projects,” says Will Bedwell, a member of the SGC and a student representative on the Green Fund Committee.
All Ole Miss students, faculty and staff are able to submit proposals to the Green Fund.
Bedwell hopes to encourage more members of the Ole Miss community to get involved in promoting a more sustainable culture on campus.
As of right now, students can choose to donate money via their MyOleMiss accounts; however, the SGC is campaigning for a $5 Green Fund fee to be added to every student’s tuition each semester.
If approved by the ASB Senate, the money from the fee would go towards funding the accepted proposals.
Some of the proposals so far include a composting project for the residential colleges, more hydration stations for refilling water bottles and promoting a reusable water bottle program.
Alex Ridgeway, a sophomore geological engineering major, is fine with the fee.
“Five dollars won’t make much of a difference in tuition, and it’s for something that will benefit our campus.”
Not everyone shows the same enthusiasm. Stephen Byrd, a freshmen international studies major, feels sustainability should be a personal responsibility, and not an added fee.
“I’m all for helping improving sustainability, but tuition is already high enough. Forcing people might make them less likely to be involved.”
According to Bedwell, despite some opposition, 85 percent of students voted in favor of the fee in a 2011 survey done by the university.
The ASB Senate will vote on the fee April 15. Bedwell feels confident the initiative will pass.
“I think most students at Ole Miss really agree that the Green Fund is something that our school needs to have.”
Will Bedwell, a member of the SGC and a student representative on the Green Fund Committee, speaks about the goals of the group.