Student View

Biological Sciences Building (BSB) on a clear blue sky sunny day. The building is copper colored with large mirrors on the outside that reflect the blue sky
Imagine a world with no oatmeal raisin cookies at Mojo, or vegetable stir fry at South Quad - it’s hard to picture, right? Well, without pollinators, we could lose a lot of the foods we depend on. Pollinator species (creatures like bees, hummingbirds, bats, butterflies, moths, beetles, and flies) are experiencing rapid declines worldwide. This is likely the result of interactions between multiple factors - disease, habitat fragmentation, and insecticide use. Because these species are essential... more
Michigan Dining employee cutting fresh vegetables
The University of Michigan – Ann Arbor campus is home to over 40,000 students, both undergraduate and postgraduate, and nearly 25,000 in combined faculty and staff. Several years ago, the campus established its “2025 Sustainability Goals,” which include specific targets for waste prevention. The primary goal is to reduce the amount of waste sent to landfills by 40% below 2006 levels. However, with the rapid growth of U-M’s geographic footprint, no progress has been made and waste levels... more
Student next to a Tower Garden in a dining hall
Is it a bird? Is it a plane? If you’ve eaten in the East Quad or Bursley dining halls this fall, chances are that you’ve noticed a lively new addition to the dining atmosphere. Officially known as tower gardens, these vertical fields are just as much educational pieces as they are works of art. For Junior Carly Rosenberg, what started as a group assignment in her Environ 211 course turned into a project with a concrete outcome. This past winter semester, Rosenberg connected with Keith Soster... more
Student composting
When I first joined the U-go’s staff, the number one thing my co-workers got on me about was composting. Not my sarcasm, or my inability to go through a shift without using the restroom. It was my ignorance about composting. Every time I threw away the scraps of a Blue To Go sandwich, I was hounded with objections. “Are you crazy, Aron?” “Aron—what are you doing? That’s compostable!” “Even the container?” I’d reply, dangling it over our little white trash bin. I might’ve been a novice about... more
Students celebrating harvest fest by decorating pumpkins
Want to celebrate local food and farms? Then come to the 6th Annual Harvest Festival on October 8th, from 1-4pm! It’s hosted by the University of Michigan Sustainable Food Program and it takes place at the U-M Campus Farm at Matthaei Botanical Gardens. There will be delicious food, live music, and lots of fun activities. Student groups that focus on food and sustainability will be there, so be sure to check them out. There will be tours of the Campus Farm and Food Forest, a project of the... more
M Farmers Markets Sept 14 and Oct 12 on South Ingalls Mall and Sept 28 and Oct 26 at the grove on north campus
For the past few years, Central Student Government has paired with several University organizations including Michiga n Dining, the Office of Campus Sustainability, Sust ainable Food Program, as well as others to help put on the M Farmers Market for students around campus. This year, there will be four markets held during the fall semester. They all run from 10am-2pm. Markets will take place at South Ingalls Mall on Central Campus on September 14th and October 12th. The North Campus markets... more
Students working on a building on a farm
  The UM Campus Farm is growing in two ways: it’s growing plants and it’s growing in size. So this year we decided to set our sights on selling produce to MDining. We wanted to provide healthy, sustainable food for our fellow students. But in order to sell to M Dining, we had to pass Good Agricultural Practices and Good Handling Practices tests. In the busy growing season, it was hard to find the time around the farm to take on the larger tasks that we would need to complete these... more
Students eating in East Quad
Meatless Mondays happen at East Quad every Monday.   Monday is only the first in a week of long days packed with classes, extracurriculars, and work, with the weekend only a dim and seemingly unreachable light in the distance. Monday is also the day where many try to avoid the East Quad dining hall like the plague, all because of the weekly initiative to promote food sustainability: Meatless Mondays.    But why the stigma? Meatless Monday is an event that vegetarians and vegans can eagerly... more
The sustainable learning community listening to a speaker outside of the house
  Sustainability: a single word that contains so many of my hopes for the future within all of its ambiguity.  Every day, my definition changes.  Most importantly, I think that sustainability is an inclusive word that involves everyone on this planet living in an environmentally, equitably, economically responsible way that leaves Earth more beautiful than we found it.   My sustainability experience at the University of Michigan revolves around integrating sustainability as part of campus... more
A wall in Eastern Market with grafitti
Last month I took a group of Planet Blue Student Leaders, and other self-proclaimed "sustainability geeks", to the Detroit Eastern Market. Despite the chill in the air, the Market was filled with people of all ages. The students and I ducked in and out of each of the sheds, amazed at the variety of produce and goods at the market. The smell of hot cider and coffee filled the air. I met a vendor selling maple syrup who explained to me all of the basics: the difference between Grade A and Grade B... more