News Archive : sustainability

April 11, 2014 - 2:23pm
This spring, Mount Mercy University will offer complimentary water bottles to new transfer students as part of their registration process. Each bottle features the Mount Mercy sustainability logo and a small brochure about the campus' efforts towards reducing plastic bottle use and promoting the presence of bottle refilling stations on campus. New Master's degree students will also receive a free bottle during program orientation events and other occasions at the CRST Graduate Center.
April 11, 2014 - 2:01pm
Do you have any worn-out athletic shoes that could be donated for a sustainable effort? Mount Mercy recently offered drop-off points for used shoes as part of the ReUSE a Shoe campaign, an effort associated with the Nike corporation. Mount Mercy student McKenna Sexton submitted the idea as a fall 2012 mini-grant project. With the assistance of Amanda Mayotte, student intern for the Communications and Marketing team, the campaign is now underway. Donations are now being accepted at the CRST Graduate Center, the Rec Center at Rockwell Collins, and the northeast location of Stuff Etc.
March 19, 2014 - 2:01pm
The sustainability, mini-grant program is proud to support a project led by Shelby Albertson and Alicia Hartley, along with Colette Atkins, Assistant Provost and Accelerated Programs Director. The trio's efforts will feature an awareness campaign about the university's electricity use; the second component will offer a training program for faculty and staff, explaining how to work remotely while having office computers turned off. Mount Mercy employees may participate in individual training sessions, in their offices, and will receive a complementary gift.
March 6, 2014 - 1:01pm
Mount Mercy Professor of English, Dr. Joy Ochs, was recently honored as a recipient of the Mellon Fellowship and will return to India this summer to study environmental issues. Ochs will be participating in the ASIANetwork Faculty Enhancement Program's seminar, "India: Religion, Globalization, and the Environment in the 21st Century." She will be stationed in Chennai and Tamil Nadu for three weeks in June. The region has seen tremendous economic growth during the last ten years, resulting in evident environmental degradation.
March 6, 2014 - 1:01pm
Sydney Wallenfelsz, Mount Mercy senior and frisbee golf advocate, received a sustainability, mini-grant award for a project that promotes wellness, recreation, and re-purposing of resources. The "ReTIREd" project will install a disk golf basket in tandem with a frisbee golf putting hole. A recycled tire will form the main portion of the basket. Marked distances will be featured around the basket. Players will start at the closest point and move further back on each succeeding turn. The goal is to move "around the basket" to complete a single game.
January 8, 2014 - 12:53pm
As Mount Mercy emerges from the "Polar Vortex" of 2014, we want to celebrate opportunities for green living and community involvement in sustainability.  Through the efforts of Catharine Cashner, Director of International Programs, and Brenda Steinke, Recreation and Wellness Director, thirty-eight students enjoyed a wonderful, October day at the New Bo Market.  
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.


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