The changes that have occurred during quarantine, or social distancing, have been very drastic. MSU students, faculty, and the Springfield community have all had to make adjustments to their daily routines.
Many people have had to sacrifice events and classes that they were really looking forward to. There is an overall unease in the world right now.
As difficult as these adjustments have been, MSU is doing a wonderful job offering support for students.
The Bear Pantry is still available for curbside for students experiencing food insecurity, online counseling services are available, as well as tutoring services. As important as sustainability and waste free living is, it is important to take care of your basic needs as well.
We reached out to MSU students from the Green Student Alliance to see how they were coping with social isolation as well as adjusting to living waste free at home.
While still practicing within the boundaries of social distancing, many students expressed how helpful it was for them to stay focused as well as get fresh air.
The increase in biking and walking decreases travel by car, while also helping students maintain their mental health.
Turn off Unnecessary Electronics
When you’re spending more time inside, you realize how often you leave lights and unnecessary electronics plugged in, using energy.
Students expressed the small changes they had made such as using more natural light when available.
Attend an Online Webinar
Plenty of sustainability-based organizations are switching to online! There is a multitude of resources at your finger tips to increase your awareness of sustainable practices and habits.
You can also learn about what other groups are doing during this time to maintain sustainable development in many areas.
Earth Day is coming up, so here are some options for events online you can attend!
Sustainable Development Solutions Network
The SDSN is hosting a 24-hour live stream on Wednesday, April 22nd. The theme of the stream is “Happiness and Sustainability.”
Everyone could use some positivity in this time, and this is the perfect event! Register for your session here.
Watershed Committee of the Ozarks
The WCO is hosting a virtual water symposium from April 22nd to April 23rd. There will be several sessions and it will be based around the importance, history, and use of water in the Ozarks. Visit the WCO website for their calendar of events.
Green Student Alliance and Student Government Association Earth Day
The GSA and SGA are hosting an Earth Day event. They have challenged students and faculty to pick up a new “green” habit or hobby, take a selfie, and take both groups. You can also hashtag #letsgogreen to share the post as well!
Be sure to follow the social media for both groups for more events throughout the semester.
Go Through Your Fridge
No, really, go through your fridge! Try new recipes to decrease your food waste. Using what you already have minimizes over-consumption.
Try cooking with whole foods to decrease package waste.
If you drink coffee, try making your own bulk cold brew or plant-based milks. There are hundreds of tutorials for your kitchen and taste.
There are plenty of local shops and independent growers in the area that are delivering while still maintaining CDC distancing guidelines.
See what local stores are doing on their websites as well as keeping up with local farmers are available.
Take Care of Yourself
One of the most important things you can do in quarantine is to take care of yourself. Whether that is taking a bike ride, stepping away from your phone, learning something new about sustainability, or cooking yourself a meal, it is important to stay healthy and stay happy.
The MSU Sustainability Department wishes you well in this time, and we hope to see you soon!