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Green Day Grows from Chillicothe Class Project
Several Chillicothe students aren't just learning about environmental responsibility in class, they are emphasizing it as part of a class capstone group project.
Students in faculty member Tom Brown's Technical and Applied Studies seminar are sponsoring "Green Day" from 10 a.m. to 2 p.m. May 12 in the Stevenson Center computer lab, patio and parking lot in front of the building.
A key feature of the day's events is the emphasis on practical steps that individuals can take to become more environmentally-friendly.
"We are looking to educate and motivate our fellow OU-C students to 'go green' by following quick and easy suggestions that will not only save them money but will help conserve and improve the state of our environment," Rhonda Cook, a student in the class, explained. "We want to encourage students to become the leaders in standing up for our community by making it a healthier and safer place to live."
The project has a three-pronged approach.
Participating students will be asked to take a quick online survey to assess their environmental footprint. They will then receive an index score to indicate what impact their lifestyle is having on the environment and a list of actionable steps to lower the score.
Students in the class project also will emphasize the importance of having properly-inflated auto tires by checking the tires of cars in the parking lots and providing material on how much mileage can be saved and how carbon dioxide levels can be lowered by having properly-inflated tires. Walmart Tire and Lube Express employees will be on hand to assist with the inflation project.
Also, recycling bins will be placed throughout campus for one week.
"We were looking for a class project that focuses on the social services aspect of the Bachelor's of Technical and Applied Studies program, and we wanted to implement one final service project that will help our fellow OU-C students and community," Cook said.
Besides Cook, other classmates leading the Green Day project are Carol Chester, Heather Hill, Techia Potter and Brittany Price.
All students who participate in the project will receive free "green" items such as pine seedlings, reusable shopping bags and energy-efficient light bulbs. Also, all participants will be eligible to win a drawing for a basket of green prizes.
The projects undertaken in this course tie together various themes, according to class instructor, Tom Brown.
"The course is designed for students to design and deliver a service learning project," Brown said. "The learning is layered to emphasize several concepts," he explained, including teamwork (working together as a team to plan and deliver a meaningful product or service), project management (working as a team to manage a product including timelines, budgets and accountability) and new content knowledge (throughout the project, students learn new and important content such as professional conduct in the workplace or the economic viability and practical implications of recycling).
Brown believes the capstone projects offer valuable practical learning opportunities.
"This is an interesting method of learning and surely offers a fertile environment for education," Brown said. "The best part is that some of the most important learnings are ones we failed to anticipate. Because there is decidedly more fluidity in this process as compared to standard classroom processes the student and professor has to be on their toes and willing to flex and adjust to unanticipated problems and opportunities."