Our lovely home: students help to clean campus

After a decade without homecoming celebrations at St. Cloud State, it is time for the university to show off its greatness. As everyone knows when entering an interview, first impressions are the make it or break it stage. For the university, this year’s homecoming celebrations are the first impressions to many. Next week, the campus will welcome many new faces to campus as well as welcome home many alumni who should see the university at its prime. To help aid in this effort, the Department of Campus Involvement put on the Huskies Fall Clean-Up on Thursday, October 11th from 1-3 p.m.

From simply walking around campus, it is clear that fall is here (and winter is near) from the leaves changing colors on the trees. The focus of the fall clean-up wasn’t the leaves, however, it was the trash and recyclables that weren’t properly disposed of. A small crowd gathered at Barden Park at 1 p.m. on Thursday to help the department clean up campus. Although the entire campus was cleaned, the two main areas of focus was the area around Halenbeck Hall and the blocks around the dorms.

The Department of Campus Involvement was prepared for this clean-up. Participation was simple, for volunteers simply had to show up. The department provided the trash bags and even utility gloves for volunteers to use. Not only was the clean-up eco-friendly because garbage was picked up from the grounds, but recyclables were also separated from the trash. Safety was also kept in mind with an informational poster informing volunteers what should and shouldn’t be picked up (I.e. plastic bottles and broken glass). Because of the cool weather, volunteers appreciated the fact that the department also had maps drawn up to divide the campus between the groups to most effectively clean up the campus.

One of the main organizers of the event was Alex Halvorson, a grad assistant for the Department of Campus Involvement. When asked why the clean-up was organized, he answered with,

“We’ve been planning this clean-up for a while, but the first one got delayed due to a thunderstorm. The timing for this clean-up was good because it is a week before homecoming. Campus should look nice for all visitors and alumni. [The department will do] whatever we can to make it a good turnout for the first homecoming in ten years.”

Another key organizer, Beth Knutson-Kolodzne, Associate Director of the Director of Campus Involvement reflected on the event.

“We had a decent turn-out on Oct. 11th. The weather was about 34 degrees, overcast, really windy and cold. Approximately 25-30 people showed up – including students, faculty, staff, athletes, and people from Great River Federal Credit Union. We were glad to hear from all of them that there wasn’t a lot of trash to be picked up around the campus. This is just a good activity to bring together campus and community in service with one another. It’s a perfect fit with Our Husky Compact dimension of the year: Act with Personal Integrity and Civic Responsibility.”

Other members of the department helped plan and were present for the clean-up.

If you were unable to make it to the clean-up, but still want to help, don’t fret! Everyone can help clean up the campus for homecoming. The easiest way to help is to make sure you dispose of all your trash properly. Another way is to pick up any non-decomposable items on the ground on your way to class. Those are two ways that you can help by simply going on with your daily business. Next week during homecoming, all students and faculty should welcome our visitors and alumni to our lovely home and show them how much pride we have in our campus.

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Anna Panek

Anna is a junior at St. Cloud State University and is double majoring in Math Education and Spanish Education, with a minor in Special Education. She is the Managing Editor for the University Chronicle this year. When she is not at campus attending class, working as a learning assistant or math tutor, or writing for the University Chronicle, she enjoys volunteering, reading, being overly competitive at board games, and telling horribly funny puns.

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