Profiles in Sustainability – Cameron Skinner

 

     Cameron Skinner is a junior environmental science major here at Georgia College (GC) with a minor in geology. He was born in raised in Dublin, Georgia. He has played tennis for seven years but now focuses mostly on academics, work, and community service. He has a younger sister who is ten years old; and, in addition to working at the Office of Sustainability, Cameron serves and bartends at Ruby Tuesdays.

     Cameron Skinner has worked in the Office of Sustainability for five months as one of the Materials Recovery interns. One of his main goals in his position is to “gear [Georgia College] towards more zero-waste initiatives and to improve our recycling plan.” He also hopes to increase the outreach of the Office of Sustainability and inspire other students to aid in the continuous efforts to preserve the environment. Over the three years that Cameron has attended GC, he has witnessed the Office of Sustainability develop from a single permanent staff member to two permanent workers aided by thirteen interns. He bears witness to the ever-growing network of faculty and students dedicating their time and talent to sustainability efforts.

     Cameron is very passionate about sustainability as he believes that it is “the only option for humanity to prosper in the future.” To him, the term “sustainability” is “a philosophy that recognizes the importance and urgency of altering the way people utilize their resources.” He is not the only one who holds these sentiments over sustainability efforts; Cameron describes his colleagues as “very driven and passionate about sustainability on campus.” He describes how the Office of Sustainability has attracted a myriad of majors to participate in their efforts, from environmental science majors to psychology, economics, and marketing majors. Over the next few years, Cameron would like to see the Office of Sustainability continue to grow in size and influence. Cameron would also like to see the department move to a larger office space in order to be more visible and present throughout the college.

     Some of the largest and latest sustainability projects on campus, as described by Cameron, are the installation of solar panels on top of Herty Hall and the composting initiative. He describes, “The Herty solar panels were the result of two physics students who drafted a proposal and submitted it to the Sustainability Fee Council (SFC) where it was approved for funding.” The project is designed to minimize the total energy consumption of the building and hopefully others in the future. Meanwhile, the composting initiative has been reusing post-consumer food waste from the MAX all semester long and has been providing compost for the GC garden. Cameron is also working with a colleague, Julia Steele, to organize a Campus Kitchen at GCSU. This would work towards helping those who are food-insecure by providing them with leftover food from the MAX. The team has recently received a $5,000 launch grant towards the project from an online video competition.

     Cameron finds it challenging to devise ways in which “hard-to-recycle items” can be removed from landfills and reused, as well as educate the campus on what can and cannot be recycled at GC. He enjoys working alongside faculty and students to help maintain the environment, as well as “[decreasing] our anthropogenic footprint.” Cameron encourages students and faculty to visit www.gcsu.edu/green to learn about the efforts of the Office of Sustainability and how they can become involved. In addition, students can submit grant proposals which are reviewed by the Sustainability Fee Council. More information can be found by emailing green@gcsu.edu.   

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