Center for Sustainable Communities

August 18, 2014
Luther hosts Institutional Food Buyers Meeting
On July 30th, 2014 Luther hosted an Institutional Food Buyers Meeting. At the meeting, representatives from area colleges, universities, nursing homes, hospitals and local farmers were able to attend break-out sessions, make connections for possible future business, and try tasty local treats from WW Homestead Dairy, K'uun coffee, Country View Dairy, Grown Locally and more. Break-out sessions included a Local Producers Panel, an Introduction to the Iowa Food Hub, Luther's Local Purchasing Story and a session on campus gardens. 

Shown: Curtis Raddatz at a breakout session. To see more photos of the Institutional Food Buyers Meeting, see LC Sustainability's flickr sitePhotos courtesy of Breanne Pierce of the LC Photo Bureau.
Luther hosts Pre-College Program

This summer, from July 27th-August 2nd, Luther invited a cohort of 18 high school students from Iowa, Illinois, Minnesota, Wisconsin, Colorado and Massachusetts to campus to take part in the inaugural Pre-College Environmental Studies Program. The students engaged with Luther faculty and professionals from the region on topics ranging from geology and Mississippi river ecology, to environmental politics and local food systems. Students were also able to collaborate on environmental research projects that they presented on the final morning of the program. Faculty and staff who participated in the program were impressed with the energy, cooperation and passion that the students exhibited through out the week. This was a great first year and everyone is excited to do this again next summer!

To see more photos of the Pre-College Program, see LC Sustainability's flickr
Luther to host Food, Faith, and Climate Workshop
Iowa Interfaith Power & Light, in partnership with the Center for Sustainable Communities, invites you to take part in the Decorah Food, Faith, and Climate Workshop, which will take place on September 27th. In this workshop you will learn how our food system contributes to climate change, reflect on what our faith traditions have to say about sustainable food systems, and look at your household's food practices and create a plan to make more climate-friendly choices. 

The workshop also includes a tour of Seed Savers Exchange and a climate-friendly lunch. Registration is $35 per person, and free for Luther students. Click here for more information and to register. 
Jamie Stallman ('14) to serve as Energy and Waste Fellow
 Jamie Stallman ('14) will serve as the Energy and Waste Fellow for the 2014-15 school year. He will implement new recycling initiatives, work to educate the Luther community on waste and energy issues and serve as a member of the Energy and Water task group, amongst other responsibilities. 

"I am generally excited that I get to be a part of the many great things happening at Luther. We have a dynamite department and it is rewarding simply to be a member of this team."
New Vegan Bar and Vegetarian Entree Line in the Cafeteria

This fall, the Luther Cafeteria will feature a new vegan bar and a re-vamped vegetarian entree line! Both options are available as of August 15th. 
Feature: Summer Sustainability Interns, part two of three
Every summer, several Sustainability interns work hard on campus and in the Decorah community. Here, in their own words, is what they're up to: 

Tessa Kraus, Garden Crew Leader:
"The past few months I've pretty much just been working in the Luther College Gardens, planting produce and delivering it to the Luther Caf, I've worked a little for Caf to Community as well which was really fun.  Outside of the gardens I run in preparation for Cross Country season this fall and read a lot.  The summer's are a great time to catch up on my pleasure reading and random art projects, I also try to help my mother on our organic produce farm when I can."
Carl Bates: 
"This summer I have been assisting with the launching of the Center for Sustainable Communities. We are currently still in the early stages of it's development, however, the goal is to create partnerships between Luther College and regional communities where students will have educational opportunities to provide a needed service in the area of community sustainability to cities in the region. Lately, emphasis has been placed on information gathering as we continue to gain an understanding of, and forge partnerships with regional communities."
This Week at the Edible Landscape
There are two Edible Landscapes on Luther's campus, one is located next to Valder's Hall of Science, and the other is behind Ylvisaker Residence Hall. Both are open to the public all summer long! Head to campus every week to see what is ready to eat.

Ylvisaker Edible Landscape:
  • Lots of amazing swiss chard and kale, it all looks seriously delicious! Cut off what you want, near the base of the plant.
  • Mini watermelons coming soon!
Valders Edible Landscape:
  • Herbs galore! Basil, chives, lemonbalm, sage, rosemary, and more!
  • Cucumbers!

Be on the lookout for peppers and cherry tomatoes -- they look like they'll be ready soon!

Photo courtesy of Breanne Pierce of the Luther College Photo Bureau. See more photos of the Valders Edible Lanscape here
Sustainability Tip
Bring Your Own Cup. Just one disposable coffee cup per day equals an entire tree's worth of paper and over 11 pounds of non-recyclable trash per year! You can buy a re-usable thermos just about anywhere: gas stations, grocery stores, department stores, etc. Many coffee shops even offer a small discount if you bring your own cup! 
This newsletter is provided by the Center for Sustainable Communities, which coordinates all sustainability initiatives at Luther College.  The mission of the Center is to promote sustainability and be a catalyst for change on campus and in the region.  For more information on sustainability initiatives at Luther and the outreach work of the Center for Sustainable Communities, please visit:
Upcoming Events
  • August 21: "Kale! Your New Best Friend!" 12-1 PM, Valders 379, Register here

  • August 25: "Patchwork Green Harvest Day," 9-10:30 AM, Patchwork Green Farm  (DATE CHANGE) Register here

  • September 15: "Saving Seeds," 12:15-1:15 PM, Valders 362, Register here
  • October 6: "Cleaning up and Preparing for Spring," 12:15-1:15 PM, Valders 362, Register here

To register for these classes and more, either click the links provided or visit Luther Sustainability's website. 
Student Spotlight

Travis Houle ('15)

Travis is a senior Biology and Environmental Studies major who has been involved in Sustainability since his first year at Luther. He has worked as a recycler, gardener, sustainability rep, and as a food and fitness intern. This summer Travis has conducted climate research with a team of students under Dr. Laura Peterson, and has worked in the Luther Gardens. This fall, Travis will continue his work with Sustainability, working to reduce solid waste production on campus. Travis intends to attend graduate school in the sciences, focusing on the impacts and responses of life and earth systems to climate change while seeking to bring a greater level of scientific literacy to global society. Travis enjoys distance running, cooking, reading, geology, and music.
Seed Savers Exchange - Summer 2014 Volunteer Positions
The Trials and Evaluation team at Seed Savers Exchange, located in Decorah, IA, is seeking volunteers for the remainder of summer 2014. Read more.
Repeat: Communications Director - Wisconsin Farmers Union
Wisconsin Farmers Union is a member-driven organization committed to enhancing the quality of life for farmers, rural communities, and all people through education, advocacy, and cooperative business development endeavors. Read more.
Repeat: Sales Associate - Fifth Season Cooperative:
Fifth Season Cooperative in Viroqua, Wisconsin seeks a Sales Associate. Read more.
Repeat: Green Iowa Americorps - Cedar Rapids Site

Matthew 25 is seeking Green Iowa Americorps team members in Linn County, Iowa. Read more.

Repeat: Farm to School Americorps - Community Outreach Position:

Farm to School Americorps seeks Community Outreach member in Jefferson County, Wisconsin. Read more.

Repeat: RE-volv, Solar Ambassador Program: 
RE-volv seeks energetic college students for their recently launched Solar Ambassador Program. Read more.
To learn about even more on and off campus work and volunteer opportunities, click here
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