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Posted on Tuesday, Apr. 5, 2011

1st Annual Swap for Good a success
The Swap for Good was extremely successful in its first year on campus. The GREEN Club collected donations from students, staff, and faculty who heard about the event through different groups and organizations they belonged to. The Swap for Good mobilized community action on campus to help benefit the local community. Volunteers throughout the week from GREEN Club, SCCAP, and other friends collected donations in Benson and brought them downstairs to Benson 1 to be folded and sorted. On Thursday, March 31st, a few volunteers gathered together to set up the campus tutoring center like a store, separating the area to create Men's, Women's, and Children's sections.

Swappers returned on Friday, April 1st, with their vouchers ready to peruse the "shop" and leave with the same number of items they donated. Clothes were packed up following the event and were taken to two Home Safe shelters nearby for battered women and their children. Additional leftover clothes were brought to the Alma Verde youth after-school program for them to shop as well.

The GREEN Club wishes to thank everyone that participated - whether you donated clothes, told your friends and colleagues about the event, or donated a few dollars to support Home Safe. Special thanks to Joanne Martin in the Costume Shop for providing racks to hang clothing and Monica Parikh in the Learning Resources Center in Benson 1 for providing the perfect space for this event. Everyone involved made a big difference (both in the size of your closet and for people in our community)!

GREEN Club is looking forward to making the Swap for Good an annual event - look for us next year in Benson!

Earth Week 2011
Earth Week's biggest attraction, Earth Day, will be celebrated on Wednesday, April 20th. For the first time, SCU's Earth Day celebration will feature a campus-wide Sustainability Teach-In in addition to the usual festival including crafts, vendors, games, and Joe Peace, taking place from 10 am-2 pm on the Santa Clara Mall.

Earth Day will culminate with a lecture given by David Orr, PhD., the Paul Sears Distinguished Professor of Environmental Studies and Politics at Oberlin College. Dr. Orr is best known for his pioneering work on environmental literacy in higher education and his recent work in ecological design. The event is free, but RSVP is required.

Graduation Pledge
For the fourth year, Santa Clara graduates are encouraged to sign the Graduation Pledge for Social and Environmental Responsibility. This Pledge asks students to "consider and take into account the social and environmental consequences of any job" they take, as well as to work to promote these aspects in their future careers.

Class of 2003 graduate Lauren McCutcheon, who now works for Whole Foods, echoes the guiding principles of Santa Clara University and links them to those of the Graduation Pledge, saying that "to be competent in today's business world, one must be conscious; and to be truly conscious, one must also be compassionate. As our capacity to explore and understand widens, the outlook for our planet and our livelihood is put into an ever narrowing perspective."

Supported by the Office of the Provost, the Pledge will also encourage pledgers to wear a green ribbon on their gowns at the commencement ceremony. The Office of Sustainability hopes to double the amount of last year's signatures this year, and has already begun taking pledges.

First taken by students at Humboldt State University in 1987, the Graduation Pledge has now been signed by over 100,000 students at hundreds of colleges and universities throughout the world, of which Santa Clara is an active chapter.

Seniors can sign the Pledge online or look for Office of Sustainability representatives at Earth Day and Life After SCU events sponsored by the Alumni Office throughout Spring Quarter.

Tags: Co-Curricular Education, Environmental Justice, News