By Jordan Beach
Reinhardt’s “University in a Park” captures most people’s hearts at first sight, and it’s important that members of the Reinhardt community and their guests appreciate and respect the beautiful surroundings in which to work and study.
“Reinhardt has been blessed with the beautiful backdrop of North Georgia, we want everyone to feel pride in the appearance of Reinhardt. Taking part in this campaign gives each person a sense of ownership in that they are directly contributing to keeping the campus pristine, flower beds clear of debris and water systems free of pollutants,” said Jeff Dale, director of facilities management.
Last year, the Student Government Association purchased several blue trashcans with a gold Reinhardt logo, providing more ways to dispose of litter properly. Now, a campaign has been launched to challenge the Reinhardt family to act responsibly as caretakers of the campus and to encourage environmental responsibility.
The Office of Student Affairs partnered with the Student Government Association, in conjunction with the University Facilities Department, to put the “Pick It Up” campaign into motion.
Dean of Students Walter May believes that Reinhardt students, faculty and staff – indeed the entire Reinhardt community – will respond positively to the ‘Pick It Up’ challenge.
“We hope to instill, and expect that our community will respond resulting in an increased sense of community ownership and responsibility for the stewardship of our University, and a greater respect for the environment in general,” said May. “Litter is an environmental issue but is one that we each can have a direct impact on. Less litter around campus will happen when there is a change in attitude about responsibility for the trash.”
Dale also views the added accountability as contributing to the well-being of future generations.
“This campaign provides a great illustration to prospective students and parents of the essence of Reinhardt: a place of community where we all come together to ensure this University’s beautiful campus is preserved for years to come,” he said.
Faculty member, Dr. Irma Santoro, program coordinator for biology, envisions the campaign will bring many positive impacts, especially in favor of its emphasis on the importance of individual responsibility in preserving the environment’s natural beauty and good health.
“As an institution of higher education, it is a responsibility of all to learn to care for our environment, whether it is Reinhardt University or everywhere else we go,” said Santoro. “This campaign could help us all realize the important role we play as a family in caring for our home. I think Shakespeare said it best, ‘one touch of nature makes the whole world kin.’”