Xavier kicks off its annual celebration of all things environmental with Sustainability Week from Sept. 26-Oct. 8. The week-long series of events acknowledges the start of the environmental movement in America with the theme "Silent Spring at 50: The Prophetic Vision of Rachel Carson."
The week honors and remembers Carson, an author whose research and concern for public safety raised consciousness about the dangers of pesticides. She is best known for her 1962 book, Silent Spring. Learn more about Carson and her book at rachelcarson.org.
Numerous events are scheduled for Sustainability Week, including on Thursday, Oct. 4, when actress Kaiulani Lee performs her one-woman show, A Sense of Wonder, a play based on the life and work of Carson, at 7:00 p.m. in the Gallagher Student Center Theater. Reservations can be made by calling the Brueggeman Center for Dialogue at 513-745-3922. Tickets are $10 for the general public and free for students.
Also, on Sunday, Oct. 7, biologist Sandra Steingraber delivers a lecture in the Cintas Banquet Center at 7:00 p.m. Her work and books, Living Downstream and Raising Elijah, focus on the links between environmental toxins and cancer, birth defects, learning disabilities and other health issues. She continues Carson’s prophetic tradition, empowering people to take greater responsibility for their personal, communal and environmental health.
The week concludes with Xavier’s Fourth Annual Sustainability Day on Monday, Oct. 8. Provost Scott Chadwick and members of the Sustainability Committee deliver presentations after a showing of a sustainability video in Kennedy Auditorium in the Conaton Learning Commons, Room 412, from 1:30 p.m.-3:00 p.m. The day concludes with a special presentation from Steingraber.
The University’s efforts toward sustainability became more focused in 2008 when Graham signed Xavier’s name to The American College & University Presidents’ Climate Commitment which has as a goal for college campuses to become “climate neutral.” The agreement has now been signed by more than 650 presidents. Goals include developing a plan of action and regularly evaluating results.
As part of Xavier’s commitment to sustainability, the University now offers sustainability internships to students who work at helping to make Xavier more environmentally friendly.
“I think this is an important issue for society in general, universities included, especially Jesuit Catholic ones like Xavier,” Graham said.
Sustainability Week is co-sponsored by the Sustainability Committee, the Brueggeman Center for Dialogue, the Center for Faith and Justice, the Women’s Center, the Office of Mission and Identity, the departments of biology, theology and English, the Xavier chapter of the Youth Empowerment Network, and Bellarmine Parish. View this poster for a full listing of events.