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Catalyst Newsletter

Catalyst 40 - September 2013

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Sustainability News

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Read news articles published over the past month.

IU Bloomington's Big Red Eats Green Festival to promote local foods, businesses

BREGSept 3, 2013 --  Four local growers and 14 restaurants will take place this month in Indiana University Bloomington's Big Red Eats Green Festival, a celebration of local food and locally owned businesses.

Big Red Eats Green was created in 2011 to raise awareness of local foods among IU students, faculty and staff. This year's event will take place from 11 a.m. to 3 p.m. Tuesday, Sept. 10, at the IU Art Museum.

"So much of what makes Bloomington a special place is the amazing variety of locally owned restaurants partnering with local growers to serve the community healthy, delicious and sustainable food," said Emilie Rex, assistant director of sustainability. "We all have a role to play in supporting a thriving local food system, and we hope our campus community will get hooked on local, delicious food after eating lunch with us at Big Red Eats Green."

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IU Bloomington students contribute to native plants initiative

Sept 4, 2013 -- An Indiana University graduate-level course with a service-learning focus has worked with a local group of conservationists and concerned citizens to promote the use of native Indiana plants in landscaping.

native plants

Students collaborated with MC-IRIS -- Monroe County Identify and Reduce Invasive Species -- to create educational materials for Go Green, Grow Native, an initiative to encourage retailers to sell native plants and reduce the sale of invasive species. Project resources were recently introduced at Mays Greenhouse, a garden and landscaping business on the south side of Bloomington.

Heather Reynolds, associate professor of biology in the College of Arts and Sciences, teaches the course, "The Ecology of Place." 

"We explore how in-depth study of particular places can advance ecological theory and sound stewardship of our green spaces," Reynolds said.

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Campus View Child Care Center receives Eco-Healthy Child Care certification

Aug 27, 2013 -- Campus View Child Care Center, an Indiana University center that enrolls children from 6 weeks to 3 years old, received an Eco-Healthy Child Care Certification in recognition of its work to implement environmentally healthy best practices.

Eco-Healthy Child Care is a program of the Children's Environmental Health Network that supports child care facilities committed to creating a healthier environment and reducing children's exposure to health hazards. It provides guidance through emails, training and other outlets. Child care centers can become certified by complying with at least 24 of 30 best-practice guidelines.

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IU Office of Sustainability seeks 2013-14 interns

Aug 15, 2013 -- Continuing a tradition of student engagement in campus sustainability research and implementation, the Indiana University Office of Sustainability in Bloomington is recruiting its 12th group of sustainability interns for the 2013-14 academic year.

The IU Office of Sustainability addresses issues of environmental, economic and social sustainability in campus operations, academic programs and university-community collaboration. The student interns, selected from both undergraduate and graduate student applicants, work on a broad array of issues related to sustainability, under the mentorship of IU faculty and staff.

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Summer in Siberia: SPEA students assess the impact of climate change

Aug 15, 2013 -- An Indiana University professor has led a team of students to one of the earth’s most isolated areas to study global environmental problems and solutions.

The students were in Siberia for about three weeks this summer, studying alongside Russian students and witnessing the impact of climate change. Under the direction of Vicky Meretsky from the IU BloomingtonSchool of Public and Environmental Affairs, the students toured and conducted experiments at a biological station on Lake Kuchak, at laboratories in Tyumen, in the oil producing region of Khanty-Mansiysk and at the Lake Baikal World Heritage Site.

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By Bill Brown, IU Office of Sustainability Director recently named Bloomington one of the Top Ten Foodie Cities due to its wealth of locally owned restaurants serving locally grown, fresh, healthy, sustainable foods prepared by outstanding chefs. Local growers help make this possible by supplying campus and community venues, the outstanding Farmer’s Market, and numerous Community Supported Agriculture operations with sustainably grown vegetables, fruits and meats.  It would be a shame for any IU student to miss out on the delicious Bloomington food scene while they are here, but how best to make the introduction?

bregBig Red Eats Green is designed to do just that by bringing the local food scene to campus in front of the IU Art Museum on Tuesday, September 10, from 11 to 3. It is a mix of food festival and farmers market that is hard to miss at one of the busiest corners of campus. Music will be provided by Poppy House Bloomington Music Collective artists. 

Four local growers and 14 restaurants will be on hand to inform students about their food and provide low-cost samples for a unique lunch experience. In addition to the food booths, live music, educational tables and lectures by food experts will give visitors a good taste of the Bloomington food scene and why it matters.

IU faculty speakers: Christine Barbour, senior lecturer in the Department of Political Science; Peter Todd, professor in the Department of Psychological and Brain Sciences; and Catherine Tucker, associate professor in the Department of Anthropology. Additionally, community nonprofits and IU student groups, offices and departments focused on food issues will provide attendees with information about how to become more involved on campus and within the community. breg

In addition to the activities at BREG, some faculty will be coordinating class assignments around the event and you will see students with notebooks asking questions between bites.

While this event is targeted to educate students, faculty, staff, and community members are also encouraged to join the food fun. This year’s third annual BREG is being coordinated by IUB students Kit Gambill and Andrea Kalasountas. You can get more information about the event and find opportunities to get involved by visiting the BREG website.

We hope to see you there! Bring your appetites, your curiosity, and your dancing shoes. 

Catalysts for Change

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Greening Cream & Crimson - Kristine Fowler

By Jessica Plassman, Project Coordinator

Greening Cream and Crimson is about more than tailgate recycling. According to IU Office of Sustainability intern mentor and Associate Athletic Director Kris Fowler, the initiative is at the heart of the IU Athletic Department's mission. Kris Fowler works closely with intern Amanda Redfern to develop best practices for tailgate recycling, recruit volunteers for the home football games, and develop avenues for promoting behavior change, not only within the Athletic Department, but in the culture of game day participation. Kris is this month's feature and we would like to thank her for her time commitment and efforts to improve this campus. Below you can read more about her. 

Kristine Fowler

kris fowler

  • Current position:
    • Associate Athletic Director, IU Athletic Department
  • What is your role in the Athletic Department?
    • I oversee compliance and nrollment services.  I serve as the sport administrator for men's and women's golf and men's and women's tennis.  Additionally, I oversee all of the athletic department sustainability initiatives.
  • How did you become involved in sustainability efforts?
    • I have always tried to live sustainably within my personal life, but it became a part of my professional job about 8 months ago and I became much more knowledgeable on the topic.
  • What do you believe is the most important message of Greening Cream & Crimson?
    • Athletics is often referred to as the "front porch" of the university, so the stage we get to showcase our greening cream and crimson efforts on is amazing. Sustainability is prevalent within the Bloomington and IU community and one of our tenets within the athletic department is "we are a part of something bigger than ourselves." Greening Cream and Crimson is the right thing to do and, most importantly, it is integrated within our department philosophy and mission.
  • What is your favorite green tip?
    • Start with yourself and do what you can; every bit helps.
Welcome to IUOS!

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We would like to welcome the following new IUOS members:

Anna Will, Cox Exploratory Scholar

annaAnna is a freshmen at Indiana University and hopes to enter the College of Arts and Sciences.  She is a Cox Exploratory Scholar and intends to major in Biology with a focus on genetics.  Anna wants to make a positive impact on children through genetic research or as a high school Biology teacher. Anna is originally from Poseyville, Indiana and lives on a dairy farm.  She loves to read, watch and play sports, and show dairy cattle with her family.  This is her first year working in the Office of Sustainability. While at IUOS, Anna will develop skills in social media, communications, marketing, and specific sustainability-related projects. 

Celia Daniels, Cox Engagement Scholar

CeliaCelia Daniels is a first year student in the College of Arts and Sciences, intending to major in Psychology and obtain a Certificate in Neuroscience before potentially continuing on into grad school. This is her first internship as well as first introduction to formal sustainability, outside of home-based conservative efforts. She has previously worked in the food industry and is interested in the studies of human behavior on a psychological and chemical level.

Dana Schroeder, Service Corps Fellow

DanaDana Schroeder is a Service Corps Fellow and a first year MPA candidate in the School of Public and Environmental Affairs concentrating in Sustainability. After spending four years at the University of Georgia earning a Bachelor’s degree in Environmental Economics and Management, she worked for a year as Education Manager at an eco-friendly backcountry lodge in the mountains of North Georgia. Dana is looking forward to spending her next two years serving the IU and Bloomington communities by helping to develop, coordinate, and evaluate the Sustainability Peer Educator Program. Her long term goals include strengthening and expanding the population of environmentally minded individuals on the local scale and making strong ties to the positive economic impact of many environmentally sound actions worldwide.

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  • Volunteer for Big Red Eats Green
    • The fall local food festival, happening on Tuesday, September 10 from 11-3 at the IU Art Museum would not be possible without volunteers. We would love to see you there, not just to sample the food, but to help us as a volunteer
  • Apply for the 13-14 Academic Year Internship Program in Sustainability
    • Position descriptions for eight openings are now listed on our website! Take a look at the offerings and begin the application process today! Find out more. Join us for an information session on Thursday, September 5 from 5:30-6:30 at E-House (704 E 10th St)
  • Become a Garden Corps Member
    • The GardenCorps program is a way to actively involve interested students in the IU Campus Garden Initiative.  GardenCorps members will be asked to dedicate 5-10 hours weekly. Find out more.
  • Volunteer for Greening Cream & Crimson
    • Date: All 8 home Football Games
    • Location: Memorial Stadium
    • Description: With the school year upon us that means one thing, its football season and Greening Cream and Crimson needs your help!  We are looking to have 120 volunteers for each of the 8 home games, to serve as Tailgate Ambassadors or Green Greeters. Attached below is a Google form that you can fill out if you wish to volunteer: Volunteers will receive a Greening Cream and Crimson T-shirt, snacks, and a ticket to the game. If you have any questions or comments please email me, Amanda Redfern, at We hope to see you out there, and go Hoosiers!

For more opportunites, visit This Week in Sustainability