By John Cote
The Student Government Association at Florida Southern College is changing the way the Moc Mart does business and helping the environment at the same time.
SGA has found a new green way to shop by removing all plastic bags from the Moc Mart and replacing them with reusable bags. Every student found one of these reusable bags waiting for them in every dorm, apartment and off-campus housing owned by Florida Southern.
“We purchased 2100 bags this semester,” SGA President Chase Hoyt said. “We will probably have to purchase around 500-600 each year to provide to freshmen.”
The idea was proposed in April 2016 and then brought to the school senate in early September 2016. The initiative was passed and implemented Jan. 10, the first day of classes for the spring 2017 semester.
How many students are taking advantage of the new initiative? A recent survey showed that 86 percent of students who participated in the survey either don’t remember or sometimes remember to bring their bag to the Moc Mart. The initiative is very new and one students are not used to yet.
“I usually go to the Moc Mart in between classes or right after if I need something real quick, so I don’t always have my reusable bag on me,” student Haley Seward said.
That same survey showed that 31 percent of respondents were ‘dissatisfied-very dissatisfied’ with the bags, 43 percent were ‘satisfied-very satisfied’ with the bags and 26 percent were only ‘somewhat satisfied’ with the new reusable bags.
Hoyt and the rest of SGA are not discouraged. They have provided extra bags for those who forget theirs so that the initiative can kick off easier.
SGA sees the bags as being effective. “This program will also lead people to make other sustainable decisions outside of just using reusable bags,” Hoyt said.
SGA is making sure to provide these “other sustainable decisions” as frequently as possible to keep students in the reuse, reduce and recycle mindset.
“We have purchased six large recycling bins that will be going up around campus within the next two weeks,” Hoyt said. The sustainability committee is also looking into ways to save energy on campus as well as bringing new ideas to the table monthly.
Hoyt also mentioned he will be trying to get a student food bank on campus by partnering with Agape food bank. Hoyt hopes students will take this opportunity to donate and help other students that don’t get or have enough food.
If you would like to suggest a green option, or a concern in general, to SGA, there will be five suggestion boxes set up around campus that students can use to voice their opinions to SGA. SGA encourages students to take steps in their own personal habits to help the environment because everyone can make a difference.