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FSU green initiative hinders students

By Stephanie Bennett

College is an adjustment to incoming freshmen at Framingham State University. The transition from high school to college is supposed to open your eyes to a world of possibilities – not to make one feel stuck with a lack of resources.

On the Framingham State campus, Rams take pride in FSU taking precautions to help conserve and protect the environment through our green efforts. On the walls of the dining hall and even the napkin dispensers, the efforts to be a greener school are on display. Students have a mutual understanding this initiative is good for the environment, but is it actually good for the student body?

Living on campus and needing to print a paper for your next class has turned into a quarter-mile walk to the Whittemore Library. The library is one of the only known places to print for students.

On the majority of college campuses, a printer is located in almost every dorm.

When I was at Carnegie Mellon University, I lived in Mudge Hall. Beside the Security Desk Attendant, there was a functioning computer and printer that was available to all the students who lived in the dorm. In order to print, you would swipe your student ID and 10 cents would be charged to your account. This made the basic necessity of printing easier and more accessible.

As an SGA Senator, I felt the need to address this issue of accessibility in SGA’s open forum. The response I received seemed illogical and press-driven. I learned that the school used to have printers in every dorm but according to the SGA Executive Board, the reason Rams don’t have access to printers in the dorms is due to the FSU Climate Action Plan (CAP).

According to the CAP, one of the campus-wide goals was to reduce paper and toner use by 30 percent, but FSU students still need the same amount of printing supplies. If FSU really wanted to encourage a reduction in supply use, they would require professors to shift to a paperless curriculum.

To put it, brutally the school is more concerned with its green title than the productivity of students.

What does this mean for us Rams? It means when the wind chill is below zero and snow is falling, the journey up Larned Hill to print your final is mandatory!

It is understandable that the University wants to help save the environment – we all know that the U.S. president does not care to – but there comes a point when compromise is needed. The compromise of student resources should not be questioned.

Printers have a sleep function to conserve energy. Without students, this university would not exist, thus the priority needs to be the students.

There are other ways to be greener school. The campus can install solar panels to power our buildings, ensure that all buildings run on HVAC-air-conditioning systems in order to use less energy, or even put recycling bins in every dorm room. These are ways to conserve energy that won’t put student’s accessibility to educational tools in jeopardy. It’s a no brainer Framingham State – it is time to get those printers back in our dorms.


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