Environmental Club Exists to Make a Difference

Owen Martzke, Staff Writer, Advanced Journalism

Notre Dame Academy’s Environmental Club has been working very hard this school year to make the school more eco-friendly. Club members have been working on several initiatives to raise awareness about environmental issues and to get involved with projects in the community.

Environmental Club was organized a few years ago by NDA alum Clare Ravizza and a group of her friends.

“After they graduated, new leadership stepped up and did a great job of recruiting younger members.” said science teacher and club moderator, Mr. Daniel Winkler.

The club meets about once a month to discuss issues and work on projects related to sustainability.

Mr Winkler, said “I enjoy seeing the excitement and enthusiasm that members of the club bring. They have a lot of great ideas and it’s fun to see what direction these ideas take us as a group.”

Mr Winkler is the club moderator but only provides the students with the resources to run the club. Jenna Cuene and Jessa Smith are the club leaders and responsible for planning meetings and organizing events throughout the year.

“The club began the year working on a project with putting hand dryers in the school bathrooms. Part of the process included doing research and speaking to the maintenance staff,” explained Mr Winkler. Sadly, this project was not feasible due to cost issues.

Members of the club have other projects in the works including posting signs around the school raising awareness about recycling and getting involved with the Fox River Cleanup Day which is scheduled for April 27.

The club has been in contact with various organizations as well as NDA faculty and staff in order to accomplish their goals. Club members designed and created signage to raise awareness about what materials can be recycled in the blue recycle bins around the school. The signs will be displayed in the near future.

The club is not all work though. They also organize events like nature hikes, apple picking, and much more in order to have some fun and spend time outdoors with friends.

Mr, Winkler encourages other students to join the club and get involved in the community.

“Half the battle of combating negative environmental impacts is having awareness,” he said. “Students should be encouraged by what they can do to help bring about positive change. This could be as simple as going on a hike to enjoy the outdoors or more complex by getting involved with local organizations to aid in cleanup efforts or conduct research. This is a club where members can truly feel like they are making a difference in the community.”

If you are looking to get involved in Environmental Club, feel free to contact Cuene or Smith, or see Mr Winkler in room 207.