WSSU Student Earns Trip to National Sustainability Conference
Daniel Crudup, a junior healthcare management major at Winston-Salem State University, has been invited to attend the Association for the Advancement of Sustainability in Higher Education Conference next fall, make a presentation on his project, and compete in the organization's Student Award program based on his success on campus.
Last year, Crudup was selected as the 'GO Green' ambassador for Winston-Salem State University and was awarded a $500 grant from the collaboration between the United Negro College Fund and the Toyota Green Initiative for the scholarly paper he wrote on an environmental issue. The grant provided him with funding for a sustainability project at WSSU.
"WSSU students were not fully knowledgeable about environmental issues and I wanted a means to get students involved in restoring, improving or sustaining the environment on our campus," Crudup said. "The project introduces a rigorous recycling program in our residence halls and includes fun and educational programs to promote green initiatives."
Crudup collaborated with campus organizations to raise awareness in addition to developing flyers, brochures and pamphlets to promote the project. He secured recycling bins in central locations on each floor of the Rams Commons Residence Hall, implemented a "Battle of the Buildings RecycleMania" and hosted an "Open Mic Night" with Community of Writers and a "Black Out Gym Jam" with the Campus Activity Board. Additionally he sent email blasts, visited classrooms and partnered with the RAMS Go Green Committee on campus to secure additional pledges and raise awareness about green initiatives in an effort to encourage students to sign the "GO Green" student pledge
Through all of his efforts and with the support of his advisor, Dr. Vanessa Duren-Winfield who is an assistant professor in the healthcare management program, Crudup was able to get a better than 300 percent increase in the number of WSSU students pledging to "Go Green." The student pledges grew from 35 to more than 500 and WSSU is currently in second place among 28 Historically Black Colleges and Universities participating in the pledge contest which ends April 7.
"RecycleMania has been a success as students are recycling more now that they are aware and have access to bins in the residence hall," said Duren-Winfield. "Daniel has done an excellent job in recruiting the campus community to get involved with adopting a ‘green philosophy’ and creating a sense of environmental stewardship as a way of life. His ability to serve as a collaborator and his innovative approach certainly supported this initiative."
The Association for the Advancement of Sustainability in Higher Education was formed to provide resources, professional development and a network of support that would enable institutions of higher education to advance sustainability on their campuses.