Goshen College Sustainability Initiatives
The Ecological Stewardship Committee is seeking ideas from students, staff and faculty to help decrease the carbon footprint of the Goshen College campus. Ideas can be large or small, one-time events or ongoing processes. Projects should impact one or more of the following areas:
- Ecological: Reduce the use of resources (energy, water, land, materials, etc.).
- Economic: Increase the efficiency of existing processes or develop new ones in cost-effective ways.
- Educational: Generate wider understanding of ecological concerns, engaging people in ways that are sustainable and that reach across various divisions and departments.
The proposal process has two parts. We invite “Initial Proposals” describing an idea in general terms as a first step. The Ecological Stewardship Committee will review Initial Proposals and work with the applicant(s) to prepare “Full Proposals” for the most promising ideas. Please email your ideas to firstname.lastname@example.org.
- Biodiesel Plant – At Goshen College the waste vegetable oil from the fryers in the cafeteria and snackshop is converted into biodiesel that is used by the college’s back-up electrical generator. The chemical conversion from waste vegetable oil to biodiesel is done in an extensive processor that was built by and is run by GC students. In a year about 150 gallons of the college’s waste vegetable oil are converted to biodiesel. Learn more at the biodiesel website.
In September 2009, Goshen College submitted its initial climate action plan. This 15 page working document summarizes our current academic and research initiatives, our current carbon footprint and recent energy consumption trends, along with a strategy for moving forward to the long-term goal of carbon neutrality.
Local public transportation:
- Interurban trolley in Goshen and Elkhart – Costs only $1 each trip. Stops on College Ave. near Adelphian House from 5:40 a.m. to 7:10 p.m., going north and westbound at 10 and 40 minutes after each hour. For south and eastbound, the trolley stops at College Ave. and 15th St. 15 min. after and before each hour. See the interurban trolley website for more details.
- South Shore passenger train from South Bend airport to downtown Chicago. See NICTD website for more details. To then get to either Midway or O’Hare airports, Chicago public transportation is available. United Limo is a bus service that goes between South Bend Airport and the Chicago airports.
- Bicycle paths:
Ecological stewardship organizations:
- Ecological Footprint quiz
- Evangelical Environmental Network
- Faith in Place
- Interfaith Power and Light
- Mennonite Creation Care Network
- Michiana Mennonite Earth Group
- Restoring Eden
- Sound of the Environment (webpage in process)
- Sustainable Business Network
Nearby places to enjoy the outdoors
- Witmer Woods and the Goshen College Cabin – Located south of campus, across Main Street, bordering the dam pond. Woods, cabin, picnic pavilion, meditation garden, two canoes. Cabin, pavilion and canoe reservations through Student Life office. No overnight stays.
- Goshen Dam and Parson’s Swamp trails – 3 blocks from campus at south end of Mill Race Trail
- Goshen Parks – Shanklin, Rieth Interpretive Center, Rogers, Abshire, and more. Details at www.ci.goshen.in.us/260436.html
- Elkhart County Parks – Bonneyville Mill, OxBow County Park, River Preserve and more. Details at www.elkhartcountyparks.org
- Brunk Cabin – Goshen College retreat facility in southern Michigan. Wooded trails, sledding hill, pond. Reserve through Student Life office. RA must accompany student groups.
- Merry Lea Environmental Learning Center of Goshen College – Trails, cabins, lakes, and more. 25 miles southeast of campus.
- Indiana State Parks – Closest parks are Pokagon (Angola), Chain O’ Lakes (Albion) and Potato Creek (North Liberty). Details at www.in.gov/dnr/parklake/2392.htm