News Archive : sustainability

October 17, 2013 - 2:21pm
Mount Mercy University community members now find new equipment cleaning options in the Lundy Fitness Center.  The center chose to move away from paper towels as a means to disinfect ellipticals, yoga mats, and weight centers.  Visitors will now find green cleaning products and cloth towels for wiping off equipment. All towels are changed on a regular basis and collected for laundering. The campus Facilities department coordinates washing the towels and returning clean items to the fitness center.
October 17, 2013 - 2:19pm
Dr. Neil Bernstein, Chair of the Department of Natural and Applied Sciences, led spring 2012 efforts to plant a steep hillside on the north-facing side of Basile Hall.  Due to struggles with tilling and a record-breaking dry summer, only half of the hillside successfully transitioned.  More grass seed was sown in the fall, leading to new germination in spring 2013. 
October 4, 2013 - 2:14pm
Assistant Professor of Business Tracy Tunwall and students in the Society for Human Resource Management (SHRM) Club organized efforts to research, plan, and create a community garden. With mini-grant funds awarded in spring 2013, the club travelled to Seed Savers (Decorah, IA) and studied the corporate benefits of having a dedicated garden serving employees.  
October 4, 2013 - 2:10pm
The "Ideas into Action" mini-grant program was proud to support the creative work of Andy Casto, Assistant Professor of Art.  Last spring, Casto, along with two research assistants from the Pathways to Scholarship Program, sought to document the environmental impact of the 2008 Cedar Rapids flood through a found-object project called "Boon of Place: Reflections on Locality and Collapse." The team explored various flood locations, located objects still on site, and while there, photographed and recorded artifacts.  Items were taken back to the studio, where plaster molds were created and lat
October 4, 2013 - 2:10pm
The sustainability, mini-grant program recently announced its second award of the 2013-2014 academic year.  Assistant Professor of Art Andy Casto received funds toward the purchase of a pugmill, an auger-based machine that reprocesses clay scrap into usable material.   The new pugmill enables the ceramics classroom to be more efficient, reducing waste and raising awareness of sustainable practices.  In tandem with Casto's pugmill, Mount Mercy Pottery Night events continue to be a huge success.  Tuesday night's event had 50 people in the studio!  Congratulations, Andy! 
October 1, 2013 - 2:07pm
As the spring semester closed in May, the mini-grant committee received a proposal for purchasing water bottles for Mount Mercy students.   Wanting to communicate our sustainability message to new student populations, the committee decided that new graduate and transfer students would be the target audiences.
October 1, 2013 - 2:00pm
In September, the mini-grant selection committee presented an award to Catharine Cashner, Director of International Programs, and Brenda Steinke, Coordinator of Recreation and Wellness.  The project, exploring alternate forms of transportation, organized a bike ride to the NewBo City Market and provided lunches for fifteen people.   While at the market, the riders learned about the city's new Blue Zone initiative, which includes the idea of "moving naturally."  
October 1, 2013 - 1:59pm
The "Ideas into Action" mini-grant program is proud to support the efforts of Sarah Botkin, Assistant Dean and Director of Student Activities, a dedicated cyclist and sustainability advocate.  During fall 2013, Sarah submitted a grant proposal for the installation of a new bicycle rack on campus.  The project was fully funded.  The seven bike, surface-mount rack was ordered and installed by the Facilities Department.  The rack is located at the Regina entrance, across from Busse Library.   A campus map offers the location of all the university's bicycle racks, as well as directions to the n
October 1, 2013 - 1:52pm
The Ideas into Action mini-grant program assists campus sustainability projects and celebrates the launch of its second year from October 7-11, 2013. Last year, the grant fund supported twelve projects demonstrating thoughtful use of community and natural resources. Through a generous gift from the Sisters of Mercy, West Midwest Chapter, the fund has been renewed and is now accepting new proposals.
April 23, 2013 - 9:59am
Mount Mercy University was recognized by GreenRU for a successful food diversion project on Tuesday, April 23. In just three months, Mount Mercy diverted 15 tons of waste from local landfills. The project is in partnership with Linn County Solid Waste Agency and GreenRU. The project was funded through grant money made available by the Solid Waste Agency's Commercial Food Scraps Recycling Pilot Project, which is open to all Linn County businesses interested in recycling food waste.
April 16, 2013 - 3:16pm
Mount Mercy University will welcome activist, author and environmentalist Julia Butterfly Hill for a special lecture: "Leading Lives of Passion, Purpose, and Power: Turning Compassion into Action," on Monday, April 22, at 1:00 p.m. in the Chapel of Mercy. The event is free and open to the public; seating may be limited.
February 28, 2013 - 12:47pm
The Mount Mercy Times recently featured an article about Mount Mercy's composting efforts in the cafeteria: Mount Mercy University has been working to implement a sustainable methodology, which includes the Sustainability Mini-Grant Program as well as the Dining Services Compost Program.Mount Mercy Dining Services has recently embarked down the path of sustainability by beginning its compost material program. “We were approached over a year ago by a company known as GreenRU about the possibility of composting at MMU,” said director of dining services Zach Stenfeldt.
November 19, 2012 - 12:43pm
Mount Mercy University and OPN Architects were awarded 2012 Excellence in Energy Efficient Design at the Iowa American Institute of Architects Convention in Des Moines. The award recognizes outstanding efforts to reduce energy use. Alliant Energy recognized OPN Architects, Inc. for renovations at Mount Mercy's new University Center, which achieved a 65 percent kBTU savings. The University Center opened in the fall of 2011.  Read more >>>
November 15, 2012 - 10:47am
Mount Mercy University and OPN Architects were awarded 2012 Excellence in Energy Efficient Design at the Iowa American Institute of Architects Convention in Des Moines. The award recognizes outstanding efforts to reduce energy use. Alliant Energy recognized OPN Architects, Inc. for renovations at Mount Mercy's new University Center, which achieved a 65 percent kBTU savings. The University Center opened in the fall of 2011.
November 8, 2012 - 12:35pm
The new “Ideas into Action” mini-grant program celebrates its official launch on Monday, November 12, 2012 with information tables in the University Center and the lobby of Basile. Visitors will receive free bookmarks, recyclable ballpoint pens, and lip balm during the weeklong awareness event, finishing on Thursday, November 15. Eight campus locations will feature posters through Sunday, November 25, and marketing efforts will continue through the fall semester.
October 30, 2012 - 3:17pm
The award-winning Cedar Rapids Eco Film Festival will kick of its sixth year on Saturday, November 10, at Mount Mercy University. It is the first year for the festival to be held on Mount Mercy's campus. Events will take place in Donnelly Hall 300. Event organizers hope moving the event from Coe College to Mount Mercy will draw more people.
October 30, 2012 - 1:30pm
Mount Mercy University has been awarded a $5,330 grant that will help bring over 20 new trees on campus as part of a project to enhance the university's sustainability efforts. Made possible by the Branching Out program through Alliant Energy and Trees Forever, 10 of the new trees will replace storm-damaged trees.
September 27, 2012 - 3:54pm
Mount Mercy University has been awarded a $5,330 grant that will help bring over 20 new trees on campus as part of a project to enhance the university's sustainability efforts. Made possible by the Branching Out program through Alliant Energy and Trees Forever, 10 of the new trees will replace storm-damaged trees. A tree planting ceremony will be held on campus Thursday, October 4, at 2:30 p.m. on the Basile Hall patio.
July 11, 2012 - 1:24pm
Mount Mercy's Professor of Biology and Department Chair Dr. Neil Bernstein led students in a grass planting in the spring of 2012 on the hill of Basile Hall. The environmentally friendly "no mow grass" will keep away erosion and doesn't requiring mowing in most circumstances. Dr. Bernstein shared with the group that the toxins and vapors released from 30 seconds of using a push mower equals roughly five minutes of driving a car.  Watch the video now >>>
May 7, 2012 - 1:19pm
The new University Center at Mount Mercy University is a model of what energy-efficient buildings can look like and offer in energy savings in Eastern Iowa. The university recently worked with Interstate Power and Light Company (IPL), an Alliant Energy company, to design the latest and best energy-savings techniques and technologies into the building from the start of construction. Read more >>>

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