A greenhouse was scheduled to be implemented this year at EvCC. Unfortunately it has been postponed until 2023, but what exactly prompted this decision?
Dean of Student Development Jennifer Rhodes’ enthusiasm for the greenhouse could not be more clear, “I’m excited to give students an opportunity to learn how to develop and grow vegetables. The vegetables can be distributed through the EvCC Food Pantry to students in need,” says Rhodes. The greenhouse was put forth by the students themselves, along with the advisor of the SEA Club.
“The SEA Club submitted a funding proposal to the Sustainability team that manages the Student Green Fee Budget,” stated Rhodes. At the moment, the project has been put on hold, one of the reasons being cost. Rhodes claims the increase in inflation has dwindled the school’s capabilities of having sufficient funding to ensure exceptional space for EvCC’s students.
There is, at the moment, no location for the greenhouse to be built. “The Leadership Team and Facilities Department, in collaboration with the ASB will be conducting a review of the campus footprint, to identify the best location for this project,” states Rhodes.
Even though there is no current location for the greenhouse, a positive to take from this is that “we have an opportunity to consider additional spaces that we may not have considered before,” states EvCC’s Executive Director of Facilities and Operations Erica Dias. Additionally, the demolition of Monte Cristo and Baker Hall in 2023 allows for more space.
“There is talk the greenhouse may be placed on the open site created by the removal of the buildings,”says SEA Club Advisor Laura Wild. This would delay the greenhouse project to 2023. According to Wild, the idea for a greenhouse was first proposed in 2017 by the students themselves.
Dias mentions the benefits of a greenhouse to the EvCC community. “A greenhouse can extend learning outside the classroom, it can be a place of respite from the busyness of the day,” states Dias. “My work has always been community-focused,” says Dias, which is exactly what this project is all about.
According to Dias, a greenhouse is good for EvCC because students are heavily involved with the planning process. “In collaboration with EvCC leadership, students give voice to student-led projects as planning and construction evolve,” said Dias.
“The greenhouse is beneficial to EvCC because it encourages time spent outdoors, which has been shown to have positive effects on mental health,” says Wild in reference to the proposed greenhouse at Everett Community College. Wild also mentions some other important factors to the benefits of a greenhouse, “A greenhouse will also allow skills to be gained in growing food, which is essential to health and important to local food security.”
“Students are the largest part of the EvCC community. They should have a voice in determining what [the greenhouse] looks like and how it operates,” states Wild. Even though it looks like the greenhouse won’t be implemented until 2023, a greenhouse has the potential to elevate the community of EvCC.
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