South Dakota State University's Independent Student-Run Newspaper Since 1885

The Collegian

South Dakota State University's Independent Student-Run Newspaper Since 1885

The Collegian

South Dakota State University's Independent Student-Run Newspaper Since 1885

The Collegian

SDSU spruces up for springtime


It is the time of year when the temperature starts to rise, the grass starts to grow and all the trash hidden underneath the snow becomes visible.

To bring students and employees together, while making sure the campus remains beautiful year-round, the College of Engineering is hosting the 9th annual Spruce Up Day. The event starts at 5 p.m Thursday, April 19 in the Student Union.

“The origin of this event in 2010 was to deal with the normally receding snow banks that uncovered lots of embarrassing litter on our campus that never seemed to get picked up,” said Dean of the College of Engineering and Spruce Up Day organizer Lewis Brown.

Sustainability specialist Jennifer McLaughlin said the day is not only meant to celebrate the arrival of spring, but also to unite students and faculty by working toward a common goal: cleaning up as much of the campus as possible and learning about the effects garbage has on the environment, and what students and faculty can do to decrease the amount of trash.

“A personal hope is that this event opens students, faculty and staffs eyes to how they each play a role in keeping campus clean every day,” McLaughlin said.

Prior to the event starting, the campus is assessed and areas in greater need of a clean up are given priority. The areas that have historically needed the most attention are parking lots and drainage canals, Brown said.

While it is a lot of work to get these areas litter-free, the day is also a fun way for everyone to enjoy the spring weather and promote Earth Day, as well as give back to Brookings and the campus, said Samuel Reski, senior mechanical engineering major.

After the campus clean up, the college of engineering hosts a hot dog cookout to thank the volunteers.
Educating students on the impact litter has on the campus is also a major component of the day.

“Garbage sends a message of carelessness and lack of care of our beautiful campus. It also really impacts the first impressions of visitors or passersby,” Brown said.

Without Spruce Up Day, piles of garbage would be left for maintenance workers to clean up, which would take a while to remove and make the campus seem less inviting, Brown said.

In order to cut down on the amount of trash around campus, students and employees should start taking ownership of their personal garbage and pick up litter when they see it around campus, Brown said.

Every year, more and more volunteers take their commitment to keeping the campus clean to the next level by participating in Spruce Up Day. From the president to student organizations to faculty, anyone is welcome to get involved in sprucing up campus.

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