Red is the color of SUNY Cortland pride.
But green is the color of the College’s future.
Last weekend marked the start of Green Days 2014, a month-long campus and community celebration of environmental awareness and earth-friendly practices. Formerly known as Sustainability Month, this series of events explores the many diverse ways SUNY Cortland plays a leading role in reducing carbon emissions, improving how resources are used, researching new environmental practices and educating students and the community about climate change.
“We changed the name because we wanted it to be catchy and fun,” said Katherine Ingraham, the Green Days committee chair and the College’s assistant director of residence life and housing. “Sustainability Month can come off as a mouthful; Green Days is more of a celebration.”
The events began March 29 with an “Earth Hour” during which students unplugged their electrical devices and found new uses for worn-out items. It will conclude on May 9 when the College symbolically flips the switch on 700 new solar panels expected to produce more than 6 percent of the College’s electricity.
In between will be dozens of guest lectures, garden plantings, community cleanups, group discussions, educational tours and hands-on learning activities. Some, like the annual Cortland Blooms festival, are true, community events. Most carry an open invitation to all members of the Cortland community.
For the full schedule of Green Days events, visit the event's website. If you don't have this link, go to cortland.edu/sustainability and select the “Get Involved” link on the left side of the page. For more information on any of the events, contact Ingraham.
A very partial list of these events includes:
• Saturday, April 5: Three-dimensional printing demonstration by the Cortland Science Technology Engineering Art and Math (STEAM) House at 1 p.m. in Corey Union, Room 139.
• Monday, April 14 – Wednesday, April 16: Genetically Modified Organism Egg Hunt. Eggs hidden throughout campus contain facts about GMOs and how they may impact health. Finding a fact makes you eligible for a prize! Sponsored by New York Public Interest Research Group.
• Monday, April 14: “Fukushima and Energy Plans for the Future,” a lecture delivered by SUNY Cortland Associate Professor of Physics Brice Smith at 6:30 p.m. at Main Street SUNY Cortland, 9 Main St.
• Tuesday, April 15: Port Watson Waste Water Tour. What happens after you flush? Join biology students at 3:15 p.m. to learn about wastewater management in the city of Cortland.
• Tuesday, April 22: Hiking tour of the Hoxie Gorge Nature Preserve guided by SUNY Cortland faculty members from 4 to 6 p.m. Transportation will be provided from Corey Union but pre-registration is required by calling 607-753-5488 or emailing firstname.lastname@example.org.
• Thursday, April 17: Campus garden cleanup, outside in back of Neubig Hall. Join faculty, staff and students at 2:30 p.m. as they prep the College’s model garden for spring planting.
• Tuesday, April 22: FesTREEval! Join the SUNY Cortland “green” reps in the Corey Union Function Room from 2 to 5 p.m., learning about sustainability on campus and how to live a more sustainable life. Prizes and giveaways are in store.
• Wednesday, April 23: “Get Wasted!” Join the Student Affairs Sustainability Committee in the basement of Corey Union from 11 a.m. to 2 p.m. and learn about composting, recycling and waste management on campus.
• Wednesday, April 23: Tour of the Freeville Earthship, a sustainable housing structure built by two Cortland graduates primarily from recycled materials, at 4 p.m. Transportation is available for those who need it. Pre-register by emailing Beth Klein.
• Thursday, April 24: Tree walk tour of SUNY Cortland’s campus led by Professor of Biology Steven Broyles starting at noon. Sponsored by the Campus Tree Committee, the tour will identify the different trees found on the College’s campus.
• Thursday, April 24: Evening glow ride presented by the College’s Community Bike Program. Bicyclists should meet at 8 p.m. outside SUNY Cortland’s Professional Studies Building, collect glow sticks for visibility and join a large group bike ride. People without bikes can borrow one free of charge.
• Tuesday, April 27: Cortland Blooms. Join members of the community for a homegrown festival and celebration of Earth Day spread across two locations — the Cortland County Office Building and the Cortland Corset Factory — from 11 a.m. to 3 p.m. The day of local crafts, food, education and activities is sponsored by Sustainable Cortland.