EnviroAlums is a group of alumni who are passionate about sustainability and social justice and who seek to improve Oberlin College, community, and the broader world by empowering students.
In addition, EnviroAlums provide funding to student activists who are working in the Oberlin community; mentorships and connections to alumni who work in the sustainability field; and internship opportunities for students who are seeking real world experience.
As alumni concerned about environmental issues like biodiversity loss, climate change, over-consumption, equity, pollution, population, and social justice; EnviroAlums assists with and advocates for environmental education, sustainability, and stewardship within the Oberlin College and Conservatory of Music community. We define sustainability broadly and recognize the important relationships among social, economic, and environmental sustainability. Our goal is to provide advisory input to the institution on sustainability, to encourage and support environmental educational venues on and off campus, to nurture environmental stewardship, and to raise funds for environmental education.
Since its founding in 2002, EnviroAlums has broadened its focus to sustainability in all facets of the functioning of Oberlin College and Conservatory of Music. Working with the Environmental Studies Program, the Office of Environmental Sustainability, the Oberlin Project, and Friends of the Oberlin Project among others, EnviroAlums has been a proactive player in the ongoing development of a culture of sustainability at Oberlin.
About Environmental Education
Oberlin College has an exceptional opportunity to lead in educating not only students but also the entire Oberlin community, for dealing with the environmental issues that face humanity. Oberlin’s involvement in broadly defined environmentally based issues has a long history, but the formal focus on this area came in the 1970s and developed over the 1980s. In the fall of 1993 the college’s Strategic Issues Study Committee recommended Oberlin further develop its Environmental Studies program as a matter of high priority. The number of majors in Environmental Studies tripled in the past decade and is one of the three most subscribed majors on campus. But Oberlin has not become a model for educating all students, or the larger Oberlin community, for dealing with the environmental issues that face humanity.
Vision and passion on the part of a dedicated core in the Oberlin community made the Adam Joseph Lewis Center a reality — a building that teaches, an exemplar for “green” construction, and a high performance building, among the best in the world despite some engineering snafus now being corrected. The college administration and students are currently discussing the major issue of climate change and considering Obelrin’s role in addressing this challenge. The monumental importance of climate change along with other environmental issues including over population, excessive consumption, biodiversity loss, pollution and social justice make the twenty-first century the environmental century. Humanity has a choice: Will it be a century of human activities that increase the likelihood of local and global social disruption and collapse, or the century of environmental recovery? This is the grand opportunity: Oberlin College can be an exemplar institution in making this the century of environmental recovery.
Oberlin College Environmental Policy
In March of ’04 the Oberlin College board of trustees voted to adopt a far-reaching environmental policy that addresses campus energy consumption, building construction and operation, land use, transportation and material use by the college. This policy was developed by the Environmental Policy Advisory Committee (EPAC), a committee composed of faculty, administration, facilities personnel and students appointed by College President Nancy Dye.
Complete text of the OC's Environmental Policy
E’s Petition to the president encouraging implementation
Editorial: Environmental Policy and Social Fabric
E’s Climate Justice Challenge Campaign statement, Nov 06