Saturday, February 28, 2009

GreenHouse Application for 2009-2010

Application deadline extended to Thursday, March 5th at 11:59pm!

This is a paperless application. Please submit your application and resume as a single document to by Thursday. If you have questions, contact Elspeth at

Major or Potential Major:
Faculty Reference:
Do you plan to study abroad during the 2009/2010 academic year?
If Yes, indicate which semester you will be abroad:

Please include your current resume.

From the following nine questions, pick six and write a short answer for each one:
1. Imagine you are planning a large scale Greenhouse sponsored event. What is the event? What are your goals for the event? What steps will you take to accomplish these goals?
2. If you could make one change to Sewanee, what would it be?
3. Tell us about the development of your environmental ethic. What changes have you made in your daily life in order to live according to this ethic?
4. As a member of the Greenhouse, what challenges do you think you might face?
5. Do you consider yourself an environmentalist? Justify your answer.
6. Tell us about a time in which you had a falling out with someone and describe how you overcame the problem.
7. What are your interests outside of environmental issues?
8. What do you see as the role of the Greenhouse? What do you think its role should be?
9. Write your own thought provoking question and answer it.
All current residents of the Greenhouse who wish to be considered for residency next year must reapply. Their applications must address the following additional questions:

Consider the past year in the Greenhouse:
1. What did you accomplish, both independently and as part of the community? How were you a leader?
2. How have you benefited from this experience?
3. What have been your greatest challenges as a Greenhouse resident?
4. What do you want to change in regards to your role in the house?
5. Regarding the changes you noted in question four, how will you enact those changes?

What's it like to live in the GreenHouse, anyways?

Think you might want to live in the GreenHouse (GH) next year but not sure if it's for you?
The GreenHousers try to make apparent two concepts: sustainable living & community engagement. We're passionate about people and the world we live in - we want to make a difference and make the world a better place. Here's what you should get excited about for next year:
  • Each resident organizes at least one major event or event series (past examples include Haunted Houses & stream cleanups) per semester for the GreenHouse. You'll be responsible for thinking up the event, planning it & working with other groups/Greek organizations, advertising it, and co-coordinating how it actually happens.
  • Many of us are active leaders in other groups on campus - we lead Housing Sewanee & other Outreach events/Trips, volunteer at the Farmer's Market or the Senior Citizens Center, and lead SOP trips.
  • Next year, we'll be taking care of our very own flock of chickens. That means waking up to feed them in the morning, gather eggs, and then put them back in their coop at night. And then cleaning out the poop & soiled bedding each week.
  • We get dirty in the garden every week. We expect each resident to spend one afternoon (3 hours) working in the garden each week.
  • We place the compost buckets in McClurg every morning and then carrying them back to the GreenHouse compost pile every night.
  • We have a house meeting (30 min to an hour) every Sunday night.
  • We take the initiative on campus with regards to sustainability. We work with the administration, the student body & PPS to make life at Sewanee more sustainable.
  • We work & live together, as a house. While we will do our best to be accommodating of friends who want to room together, we can not guarantee roommate preferences.
  • We do chores around our house - cleaning the kitchen & family room, taking out the recycling, and exciting surprises for each other. And EVERYONE DOES THEIR DISHES!
And lastly, the goals of the GreenHouse are to:
  • Develop students of all academic pursuits into creative and inquisitive servant leaders,
  • Engage with the local community through active participation, and
  • Promote involvement by faculty, their families and community so that we all may more fully
  • Practice sustainable living here at Sewanee and in our global community as a means of
  • Confronting a self-centered mindset that motivates local and global inequality.

Wednesday, February 25, 2009

Free Coffee

"Free Coffee!"

Boy in coat and tie: "No, really?!?"
Neighborhood photographer: "No thanks, coffee gives me the shakes."
Chem major: "You made my morning."
A desperate test taker: "How much?"
An incredulous prof: "How can you serve coffee if you don't have cream?"
A Nobel Peace prize winning physicist: "I don't drink coffee."
Angry Girl: "I'm already LATE!"
Girl on bike: "SWEET!"

This morning we served 84 cups of coffee to folks going to and from classes, breakfast, and the SPO.

Why? According to Laura, "because we're nice".
Or maybe it's just our subversive advertising technique to get you to attend the Arm (en) Trout Coffeehouse (this Friday at the GreenHouse from 9 P.M. to midnight). We'll be serving more Stirling's coffee and several elegant trout-shaped cakes. The entertainment will be provided by you and your friends.

Sunday, February 22, 2009

Sunday, February 22nd meeting!!!

Meeting minutes...

Carson farts in Elspeth's general direction because she hasn't been using the shower timers.
Carson will do the time sheets.
Carson made a water resistant timer by putting it in a ziploc bag.
Bentley thinks that Carson should stop eating his hamburger to conserve water. That's what Bentley does.

Starting minutes at 8:00. A.K.A. don't be late.

Arm & Trout Coffee house. 9-12 this coming Friday (the 27th of Feb).
Caterers? Elspeth didn't want to call on the weekend. Will be taken care of... coffees and cakes, etc.
White sheets on walls? Dramatic lighting? Bentley say's strobe lights. Or Christmas lights, says Becca.
Becca will make coffee and refill it.
Laura will write a vagina monologue for Bentley to read.
Carson will not perform penis monologues, he will read a poem called "the void" while strobe lights are going.
We'll need to move furniture around for the coffee house.

Garden business:
We had garden hours today.
4 hoop houses in total. 2 were put up today.
Water catchment- use the water for watering plants. Buckets around the garden with water in them.
onion bulbs planted.
Lettuce will be put in.
We ordered potatoes. Cabbage. Greens. Peas.
Composting- we can't just put fruit scraps in the compost. We need to layer the fruit with leaves and newspaper and other compost.
We need a way of transporting bucket of compost out to the garden. Bike trailer? Jonathan is working on it.
Trying to get trash out of the garden.

You can sign in and edit the post that Paul put up about living in the Green House if you need to.

Chicken Meeting:
We split up into 2 groups before the chicken meeting and we need to use those groups now, says Becca.
Building the coop- important part.
We need a more specific proposal ready by the end of this week.
Coop design completed by the end of this week too. We need to turn in everything together and completed.
Meeting or multiple meetings to complete the coop design and chicken planning.
We already have the basic plans for the chicken coop, we just need to fully organize and explain the design.
Where are we going to get all the money from? Something to think about. Shouldn't be a problem.
Coop design should get together this week. Paul, Carson, Emily and Jonathan- meet at 1:30 at the bike shop on Wednesday for the coop design meeting. Jonathan may not be able to make it, but Becca and Bentley can stop by. Bring your graph paper, says Carson.

We need to start planning events. We had a lot last semester, but not so many this semester.
We should do something next week. What are we going to do this next week?
Maybe doing something with Beta and Lamda Chi? Saturday afternoon jam session with Lamda? Or even a week night.
Thursday night jam session with Beta? Carson can talk to them about that. Maybe convince Beta to do the advertising?

EVERYONE put the garden signs up all around campus before Helen gets back!!!
Helen did not go to Mardi Gras. She went to Chicago.
Put pictures of random students on posters for Arm and Trout advertisement.
Personal invitations for coffee house to the people that have secret talents.

Jonathan needs to move his desk.

Burn permit for fire a week from this Sunday.

Laura will be gone for a week starting on Saturday.


Friday, February 20, 2009

Food & the Modern World (and where colleges fit in)

Sewanee has 13,000 acres. Perhaps we could spare a few & bring back the farm? Warren Wilson does it with 275 acres. Just saying...The article goes on to talk about the modern economy and how to change the food production paradigm.
Tucked into the rolling hills of North Carolina's Swannanoa Valley, Warren Wilson College is essentially surrounded by a farm. The school's 800 students not only tend the 275-acre farm -- which includes pastured livestock and vegetables -- they also provide the labor to run the campus. They do everything from accounting to plumbing to cooking in the cafeteria. I've had the privilege of hosting several Warren Wilson kids at Maverick Farms, and I've been amazed at how well those kids know how to work, and have plenty of fun while doing it.
Read on at grist

Thursday, February 19, 2009

DIY: Sustainability

Learn from your neighbors!

Sponsored by the Sewanee GreenHouse and Students for an Environmentally Responsible Plateau, Sewanee senior Angie Langevin has started a gathering called D.I.Y.: Sustainability. Students, community members, and faculty will come together twice a month for a potluck and "skill-share"

The goals & vision are the following:
• To share skills or knowledge that will help us all live more simply,
sustainably, and closer to the land.
• To promote community on the Cumberland Plateau with Sewanee students,
activists, community members, faculty, and their families.
• To enjoy our time together through food, music, and conversation.

At each skill-share a community member, student or faculty member will share knowledge or teach a skill pertinent to sustainable living. We hope that food, friends, and music will accompany these gatherings, and we will encourage everyone to bring food to share and an
instrument to play.

We are calling on you to share your ideas.
Do you have a suggestion for a topic, or would you / a group like to lead a workshop?
Do you have a particular vocation, job, hobby, story, or craft you could share with us?
What would you like to learn?

We have come up with some ideas: permaculture, bread baking, cooking, animal husbandry, solar panel installation, solar oven construction, bike-power, cobb building, art and the environment, living locally, masonry, fermentation – but we want your input!

Post your ideas here or send them to

Garden Allotments

Here's an interesting article about cooperative community gardens in the UK

Arm & Trout Coffeehouse

Arm and Trout dare you
to be weird, witty, creative, edgy, intrepid, humorous, schizophrenic, titillating, and groovy.

On the night of February 27th, the Greenhouse will become the Arm & Trout coffeehouse, an open mic opportunity for you to floor us with your creative wit. Even if you've buried your aspirations at becoming the next Wyatt Prunty, we invite you to step behind the microphone and give us your best shot. This is your chance to perform before a darkened, well-caffeinated audience, anything you so desire--acoustic, electric, poetry, prose, drama. We'll even showcase your artwork.

And if you aren't creatively inclined, come bring your deepest mug, swill your favorite caffeinated brew, and enjoy the company of those who are. You provide the entertainment. We'll provide coffee and sweets.

What: The Arm & Trout Coffeehouse, open mic night
When: Friday, February 27, 9 pm--midnight
Where: The Greenhouse

Tell us how you would like to participate. Post a comment or call Laura and Elspeth at extension 3171.

GreenHouse Poultry Initiative

GreenHouse Poultry Initiative
February 2009

The residents of the GreenHouse aim to initiate a student-led project of animal husbandry at Sewanee, bringing to light the relationships between academic study, lifestyle and the community at large. The project will fulfill the following objectives:

• Demonstrate the University’s commitment to sustainable living practice, education, and social justice (Strategic Plan for Environmental Education and Sustainable Living, October 2008)
• Serve as an experiential educational tool for LLCs, environmental studies courses, and general urban-derived student body
• Produce wholesome food for the University community and encourage dialogue regarding sustainable agricultural production in today’s world

Animal Management and Care

Students will be responsible for every aspect of the care of the animals. This will be done with advice from local community members, with the goal of encouraging student understanding of and involvement in food production and creating opportunity for positive community-student interactions.

• Students will purchase the chickens as soon as continual caretakers can be identified. This will likely be Summer or Fall 2009, depending on summer schedules.
• Chickens will spend their first 8 weeks in a small cage and then be moved into their coop.
• Caretakers will be identified for university vacations & breaks.
• Each week students will clean the coop and replace the bedding. They will compost used bedding at the Old Farm Road garden.
• Students will gather the eggs each day.
• Students will herd the chickens into their coop at night and release them into their pen each morning.
• Sewanee Elementary & St. Andrew’s teachers can use the chickens in their curriculum with their students
• Students, in collaboration with experienced farmers, will discretely butcher animals when deemed necessary.
• Chicken updates will be posted on the GreenHouse website (

Equipment & Costs

The project has been designed to minimize costs at all levels. Total start up costs will be under $250. Operational costs will be approximately $25 a month. Funding will come from current GreenHouse budget, interested LLCs and academic departments.

• 12 chicks: $20
• Water dispenser & feeding dish for chicks: homemade from mason jars
• Small pen or cage: obtained from current supplies or classifieds
• Heat lamp: borrowed from LAL
• Bedding: pine needles from Domain
• Adult-sized feeder & water dispenser: $15
• Feed: $20/month (Feed will be organic if at all possible)
• Incidentals: $5/month
• Coop and Fence Construction: Second hand materials + $150 in new materials

Potential Concerns

The project has been discussed with all neighboring community members and the Assistant Dean of Students for Residential Life. The following addresses previously identified concerns with raising animals here at Sewanee. Further stakeholder input is encouraged.

• Appearance
o Small coop (8x6 ft, 4 ft tall) strategically located behind Greenhouse
o Fenced in area adjacent to coop (10x8 ft, 4 ft tall), constructed from chicken wire with net covering to protect from hawks and dogs
o Coop built to maximize aesthetics
o Hidden by trees & vegetation, not visible from Alabama or Mitchell Ave.
• Smell
o Minimized by well ventilated & maintained coop with fresh bedding
• Noise
o All-female flock, no roosters.
o Asleep at night; only active during daylight hours
o More quiet than current fraternity neighbors

Thursday, February 12, 2009

A C- for Sewanee's Sustainability Report Card

According to the College Sustainability Report Card, an independent evaluation of campus and endowment sustainability activities at colleges and universities in the United States and Canada, Sewanee has an overall grade of C-. In comparison, Washington and Lee received a C+, Rhodes a C, Duke a B+, Kenyon a B-, Oberlin an A-, and Middlebury an A-.

Here are the categories they use with the grades we received in parentheses:

Administration (B)
Climate Change and Energy (B)
Food and Recycling (B)
Green Building (C)
Student Involvement (D)
Transportation (C)
Endowment Transparency (F)
Investment Priorities (C)
Shareholder Engagement (F)

Click the link and read through Sewanee's short report. What should we work to change?

The grade for student involvement is bad. I think that 1) There isn't much student involvement and 2) student involvement isn't well advertised and displayed, not even on campus.

Sunday, February 8, 2009

Corn derived ethanol worse than gasoline?

Found this to be pretty interesting.
Just thought I would share.

On the eighth day of February we had a meeting

Meeting (or lack thereof) Minutes

Carson made sure it was OK that Invisible Children bakes cookies.
Chelsea listened to Jonathan on the radio.
Carson decided that the instruments are more important than Becca.
Merit Weekend: Next Saturday. We can go hang out at the McGriff house.
Paul is hosting a Merit Student. We are going to dirty rush him.
Chicken Meeting went well.
There are two groups that are committees or something like that.
One of them is designing and planning the coop and where it will go.
The other is to make a presentation in front of the Lease Committee.
Should we do the presentation in song?
Garden needs work.
Carson will be ordering seeds by next Sunday.
Bentley and Chelsea will go to the hardware store to get hoop things for that other thing.
Carson bought it and it should be here soon.
Everyone can go out on their own time.
Make a list of things to do.
Pick up cardboard and pick up trash.
There is a lot of broken glass. It needs to be picked up ASAP.
We will have garden days Thursday 2-5, and Sunday 2-5.
Meeting at 4 o'clock at Garden on Sunday.
Helen making sign, Bentley writing cstudent, Chelsea making FB group.
Meeting Wednesday.
We should make it fun and enjoyable.
Format of meeting should be fun and enjoyable.
Back to chickens after Bentley told a great Luke joke.
Chickens are going to be hard work.
Maybe we need to research more about where they should be.
Meet with Katherine Alvarez.
What is the compelling argument for having chickens?
Meeting Friday afternoon at 3 pm about chickens?
We will go to hardware store Saturday or Sunday.
Meeting also Sunday at 4.
Also Wednesday is the information meeting.

Sunday, February 1, 2009

Meeting Minutes

Meeting Minutes
From Feb 1, 2009

Present: Helen, Chelsea, Carson, Paul, Emily, Laura, Bentley, Elspeth, Angie

materials for hoop houses
need $44
Carson will order

Carson will make seed list
Angie will show Carson amendment catalog
Discussed whether or not to let people have their own plots at garden.
No conclusion.
Plant Fruit trees?

Clothesline - Bentley will buy stuff

Shower time stop watch - Carson found some $10 each

Shower toggle - Chelsea knows where to get them
Laura will talk to PPS.

Hose nozzle - Bentley will buy it

Sewanee Idol - Emily and Jonathan in charge
Thursday at 8 practice

Save tabs for from beer cans

Battery and light bulb recycling in Resource Closet.

Carson will talk to Laurie Kianka again.

Helen will e-mail Emory about dinner.
Angie will make dessert.

Elspeth will organize music jam week from Thursday.

Discussed creek cleanup

Better communication with administration to let them know about event.
One person organizes: works well, but make sure that everyone has to lead a big event.

Wednesday scrabble: 8 o'clock
Laura will write e-mails and organize

Discussed application process

Angie proposal - pot luck skill share (bimonthly)
community, faculty, students
Skills for living sustainably

SERP will pay for advertising
good posters
enviro studies classes extra credit
messenger - advertise couple weeks in advance
schedule a few in advance

snacks first time


lunch or dinner - work day weekend skill share
need back up food? cater? or do no food? just snacks? bring snacks to share?
funding -Greenhouse and SERP
Saw this online and found it really interesting.
Check it out if you get a chance.
Meat is Murder on the Environment
Powered by Blogger.