Keeping It Green at Oakton

Your source for the most current sustainability news from Oakton Community College


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Doris Duke Conservation Scholars–Deadline 2/8/17

We would like to let you know about an exciting program at the University of Michigan–the Doris Duke Conservation Scholars Program (DDCSP UM). DDCSP UM is an exciting two-year research and internship opportunity for bright, curious undergraduate students interested in conservation, nature, and the environment. The program is aimed at bringing more undergraduates currently underrepresented in the environmental field into the conservation arena.

In addition to a $4,250 stipend, accepted students will also receive room and board and travel expenses to and from Ann Arbor, Michigan each summer.

Please note that the application opens November 15, 2016 and the deadline is February 8, 2017. The program dates are June 4-July 29, 2017. Detailed program information and application are available on our website at http://ddcsp-umich.com.

Please feel free to contact program administrators at (734)936-0900 if you would like to discuss the DDCSP UM program further or e-mail ddcsp-snre@umich.edu.


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FREE for Veterans–Basic PV Training Course

FREE PV 101 COURSE FOR VETS

ONLINE – November 14 – December 18

To honor the service of U.S. Veterans, we are offering free tuition for Veterans for Basic PV 101 Online, running November 14 – December 18.

This four-week online course teaches the basics of solar PV, including how PV systems work, selecting solar system size and basic analysis of solar costs.

ENTER DISCOUNT CODE “VETS101” or call Jenny Heinzen at 715-592-6595 ext. 108 to receive free tuition for Veterans. 

Register Now


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Banning the Bottle at Oakton

On November 1, 2016, Oakton Community College’s “ban the bottle” campaign became official. Bottled water will no longer be sold in our cafeterias, vending machines, or at catered events. This initiative, powered by students in an Honors course and carried on by Students for Social Justice, is a clear example of the broad impact our students can have on their surroundings when they work with dedication, passion, and research. To learn more about their role in making this initiative happen, please check out this Chicago Tribune article from April 2016.

The purpose of the initiative is to draw awareness to the social implications and environmental impacts of the bottling process. Among the many concerns:

  • Privatizing water sources drains wells and aquifers, hurting farmers, communities, and ecosystems.
  • Bottling companies are not subjected to the same regulatory and health testing as municipal water sources, so it is hard to determne the safety of the water.
  • Often, bottling companies are bottling filtered tap water and selling it back to you for 240 to over 10,000 times the cost.
  • Three liters of water are required to produce one liter of bottled water and only 27 percent of bottles are properly recycled, ending up in oceans and landfills instead.

To find out more, please visit www.banthebottle.net.

Refill your re-usable bottles with filtered water at our hydration stations in the cafeteria and other sites throughout campus. It is important to note that both Des Plaines and Skokie provide clean, safe drinking water which is subjected to intensive regulatory testing on an annual basis. Please check out their respective websites to download the most recent water quality reports.

Village of Skokie, Public Works Department, Water and Sewer Division

Des Plaines, Water System Division

As a proactive step in verifying health and safety of drinking water on campus, we worked with a contractor to sample our water fountains and fill stations. The results indicate high water quality on both campuses. Read the full water testing reportFollow up water testing was conducted for points that showed slightly elevated levels of copper, which were eliminated/reduced by flushing the system. It is now part of our regular maintenance schedule to flush to our fountains in order to maintain high water quality.

During the month of October, we also held a water taste test on both campuses to raise awareness of the ban and see if individuals really did have a preference for bottled water. We were pleased to discover that water from our filtered hydration stations on campus came in at the top!

jpeg-test-test-results

For questions and concerns, please contact greenteam@oakton.edu.


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Field Projects International–Enroll by November 18

Are you an undergraduate or recent graduate interested in getting hands-on field experience? Field Projects International provides great opportunities to travel and learn! Upcoming courses in Peru and India are focused on tropical entomology, primate-carnivore ecology, and vertebrate field biology. These opportunities are ideal for those pursuing or contemplating a major in biology, anthropology, ecology, or pre-veterinary science. To find out more about each of the sessions, keep reading and click on the titles for further details. You have until November 18 to enroll for these incredible opportunities!

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