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Sustainability Club: Past and Present

Pierre LaRocco
Co-President Kate Matthews

Sustainability Club has planted its feet in Springfield Township High School! In recent years, many students have joined this club, providing them in exchange with opportunities that provide a greater understanding of environmental consciousness, as well as service hours to be put towards other clubs or college admissions.

Club History

Originally called the “Environmental Club,”   the Sustainability Club was established by Dr. Zgraggen, who was a teacher, in 2009.  Shut down in 2016 due to complications, it then restarted in 2019 under the current advisor, Dr. Maharaj.  At this time, he changed the name and brought an increased focus to inclusiveness.

Leadership and Projects

Photo Courtesy of the Sustainability Club

This year, the club, led by co-presidents Kate Matthews, Sophie Evans, and Asher Silberman, has created multiple opportunities for members to get involved in diverse ways. “I think this club is for everyone, no matter the level of involvement they’re interested in,” says  Matthews. “We have many opportunities to complete volunteer hours throughout the year, but if they’re interested in getting more involved, our club [also] has many real-world applications.” Many students initially joined to take part in the park cleanups, one of the club’s most popular features amongst students. To this point, Dr. Maharaj  “thinks seeing young people take action in those types of positions is encouraging for our future.”

A notable event was December 2022’s clothing swap, which successfully encouraged the club’s presidents to prepare for a second swap on Saturday, January 27th.  Clothing was collected by the district for two months before the swap, and all remaining clothes after the swap were either given out at school the following weeks or donated.

Other initiatives have focused on the reduction of wasted plastic.  During the 2022-23 school year, the club successfully collected 500 pounds of plastic, earning the school the iconic green bench outside the main office. This year, they are reaching for 1000 pounds of plastic; as of February 2024,  400 pounds have already been collected.

As the Springfield Township Sustainability Club gains more members and community support, the presidents expect the number of projects and environmental applications to increase, providing more opportunities to those involved. The 2024-2025 school year initiatives are already being set, and it’s safe to say that the future of the club will not disappoint!

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