Saddleback College students volunteer in campus clean-up

The Environmental Awareness Club hosted a Campus Clean-Up event on April ... , 2014 - Photo by Lam Tran

The Environmental Awareness Club hosted a Campus Clean-Up event on April 24 (Lam Tran)

More than 50 Saddleback College students gathered in the Student Services Center Quad for Earth Week’s Campus Clean Up event Thursday, April 24. Divided into teams, the students were provided trash bags and gloves as they set out around campus to pick up trash.

“We are finding more trash than we expected and most of them are cigarette butts, even though we have ashtrays close by,” said Anissa Medina, a 20-year-old vice president of the Environmental Awareness Club. “I feel like students are not so careful about keeping our campus clean, so we want to educate students to protect the environment.”

The event was held by the Environmental Awareness Club to educate students about the importance of protecting the environment and to have student volunteers to clean up the campus.

“An overview of the campus looks clean but once you start looking closer, you will start to see all the trash everywhere,” said Dr. Morgan Barrows, department chair of environmental studies and marine science technology. “Cleaning up the land will effectively reduce the water pollution and at the end of it we get to clean up our campus.”

Kat Davis, a 46-year-old environmental studies student, found cigarette butts almost everywhere.  Davis said that Saddleback College should be a smoking-free campus.

After an hour of cleaning, all the teams came back with big bags of trash. Each student volunteer got a water bottle as a gift from the club.

“I have students from my classes volunteer to help with cleaning up the campus,” said John Richards, an environmental studies instructor. “We had a great number of participants this year and it’s probably a good sign that students are caring more about the environment.”