During the College’s Earth Day celebrations on April 24, 2010, William & Mary unveiled a new top-10 list that highlights individual efforts of sustainability.
Launched campus-wide in late-January, the DOT campaign invites all members of the university community to “Do One Thing” to make small, public commitments to more sustainable choices. Each of the university’s schools has been involved, conducting their own sector campaigns. The effort is part of the broader work of the College’s Committee on Sustainability (COS).
“Out of thousands of simple, personal commitments there were many, many exceptional commitments,” said Erin Ryan, associate professor of law who also chairs the College-wide DOT initiative. Ryan joined Rowan Lockwood, associate professor of geology, to announce the first-ever top-10 DOT list. Each winner received an Earth Day T-shirt and a Frisbee. Of course, both are sustainable.
“Our top ten are truly the cream of the crop,” she added.
Following the awards, President Taylor Reveley formally announced the College’s own DOT, a plan to transform the lodge buildings into a model sustainable “eco-village.” According to the proposal, the lodges' seven living spaces and Daily Grind coffee shop would be transformed into a village of sustainable buildings using existing and cutting-edge technologies, construction materials and designs.
Students, faculty and staff from across the university were recognized for their individual DOTs. Below is the top-10 list with comments from each winner.
10. Dawn Fleming: VIMS Center of Coastal Resources Management Staff
- DOT: Contact companies to be removed from their distribution list for catalogs, magazines, and newsletters that no one in the office looks at and/or are duplicate copies.
- Follow up: I haven't counted them but so far I've removed our names from mailing lists for duplicate copies and for people no longer working here as well as for catalogs that aren't being used. My next step will be asking everyone in my department to turn in newsletters and advertisements that they don't want to continue getting instead of just throwing them away so that they too can be removed.
9. Dusty Parson: Law Student, Environmental Law Policy Review
- DOT: Three specialty journals (Environmental Law and Policy Review, Bill of Rights Journal, and Journal of Women and the Law) are transitioning to paperless, instead using a combination of blackboard, jump drives and external hard drives to store all of the sources and adobe professional to mark up the pdfs.
- Follow up: The test run was very successful and the incoming editorial board for ELPR is committed to making it a permanent practice.
8. Margaret Saha: Chancellor Professor of Biology
- DOT: Offering extra credit in Bio 203 if students post DOT that relates directly to topics they studied in class this semester.
7. Mary Mueller: Office Manager, School of Education
- DOT and follow up: The Training and Technical Assistance Center (T/TAC) is reducing paper by limiting the amount of handouts that we provide at workshops and posting the materials on a Wiki, sending announcements and newsletters electronically, providing online registrations, scanning documents rather than coping, recycling paper in our office, encouraging the use of personal water containers rather than bottled water, and exploring web based meetings to reduce travel.
6. Larry Evans: Newton Family Professor of Government
- DOT: No books in five of my six classes this year - whenever possible, all student readings are on-line.
- Follow up: For my five courses this year, all of the readings were either downloaded from JSTOR, other Internet sources, or otherwise scanned and put on Blackboard. Over the year, this probably saved the students around $40,000 (in aggregate) and also made my classes essentially paperless.
5. Chris Ward: Information Technology/Director of Systems and Support
- DOT: My wife and I have installed a solar water heater for hot water, 16 solar voltaic panels for electricity and 3 cisterns holding a total of 600 gallons collecting rain from the roof to water our plants.
- Follow up: Solar panels produced 41 percent of my home energy use from mid March through mid April.
4. Jordan Peterson: Undergraduate student
- DOT: ISC/CFA pledges to not use bottled water at events, specifically the ARC Carnival on March 27th!
- Follow up: We were able to go bottle-less at ARC Carnival, an event involving 75 ARC clients and over 200 William and Mary Students. In addition, this year as an All Greek Product, we chose to sell aluminum water bottles, which is a great way to stop the use of plastic water bottles on campus!
3. Paul Richardson: VIMS scientist
- DOT: My pledge is to identify every plant on my small 1/2-acre property. Remove it if it's invasive or non-native, and plant all native plants. I will also advertise and preach this to all of my privet loving neighbors! Native plants attract native bugs and native birds.
- Follow up: We're in the very early stages. Even though I have a biology degree from ODU, I'm definitely a novice when it comes to botany! Fortunately, for me, Jim Perry's office is close to mine and he's been very kind in helping with plant IDs. As for the neighbors, when they ask, I've simply told them that I'm planting native plants which attract native insects, etc.
2. Scott Swan: Associate Professor of Business
- DOT: To recycle/reuse quality books at W&M for use at the University of Belize.
- Follow up: I have been able to gather over 200 first quality textbooks from the Business School faculty and begun the process of delivering them to the University of Belize. They have a 1970s era library about three times the size of my office – they are excited to be a recipient of something we take for granted. I really would like to expand it across campus to include Arts and Sciences.
1. Lauren Sabacinski: Undergraduate Student
- DOT: Women's Tennis is joining in DOT: (1) using team water bottles for ALL practices (no PLASTIC cups), (2) recycle the tennis ball cans, and (3) send old shoes back to Nike to be recycled
- Follow up: All the players have their own water bottles and we NEVER use plastic cups anymore. We are in the process of bringing the old shoes to Nike (the outlet store) and we put the tennis cans in the recycle bins. So, day-by-day we are accomplishing what we set out to do for our DOTs!