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Collective measures toward sustainability begin at home

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(LEFT TO RIGHT) Alison Oliver, Ashley Han, Prof. Preston Galusky, Ofelia Doroteo and Jiali LI help to plant crops at Overflow Farm Oct. 8. (Stephen Day | Viewpoints)
By John Michael Guerrero

The Student Sustainability Collective at Riverside City College aims to lead the community in a more green direction in order to combat rising pollution worldwide.

Through advocating, educating and individually recording trees for inventory, this club has continued to go above and beyond to combat decades of radioactive wastes, plastics and carbon that litter the planet’s surface and atmosphere.

The Earth has become polluted and destroyed by humans over the years. The Sustainability Club hopes to educate students, faculty and the community about more environmentally friendly ways of life.

“(The club’s main goal) is to bring awareness of sustainability to students on campus and bring knowledge about recycling, caring for natural wildlife and how to do trash clean ups,” Crystal McCreary, current club president, said. “Overall the main goal is to prevent (more damage to Earth) and the atmosphere.”

Tonya Huff, one of the co-advisers for the club, said one of the driving factors for students is the desire to care for the planet. This sentiment is further echoed by board members of the club like Joseph Bedolla, vice president of the club, and Miles Wentworth, the Inter-Council Club (ICC) representative.

“(How the environment is kept) is a representation of the people who are there and us as a society,” Bedolla said.

Much of the work the club has done around the community has greatly impacted both the college and Riverside County through participating in local cleanups and most recently, a tree inventory on campus.

One of their target audiences at the college is the Associated Students of Riverside City College (ASRCC).

“We are trying to educate the student body about things they can do in their daily life that can be more sustainable, as well as offering volunteer opportunities so that people can have a direct impact (on the environment),” Wentworth said.

 The club educates ASRCC and RCC’s Teacher Board about ongoing pollution issues threatening Earth, reaching a broader audience by not only educating students but also faculty about more sustainable lifestyles.

Dr. Huff said members of the student body have not only begun spreading news about club events, but also participating in them too. Similarly, the student-faculty inter-relations between the Sustainability Club and the Faculty Sustainability branch have continued to grow.

 The club has continued to push for climate action in Riverside through a combination of willpower and motivation.

“I really love what I do right now, it’s been really amazing and a great learning experience. I have also gained a lot of friends through this club,” McCreary said. “It’s amazing the newspaper and the college is (recognizing the club’s work).”

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