Our Environmental Crisis, and How a College Student Can Help

Samaria poses with a tree at Bunce Green.

This article is part of a running series with Rowan University’s Wellness Center. This collaboration aims to educate students about personal well-being options. For further updates, follow @RowanUWellness on Twitter, Instagram or Facebook.

According to earth.org, the biggest problems that our world is facing are: poor governance, food waste, plastic pollution, air pollution and agriculture.

These are just a handful of some problems that we are facing, but as the next generation of this planet, it is now up to us to do as much as we can in order to (literally) try to save the world.

One can consider Rowan University as our own small community. That being said, it is important that we take as much care of this community as possible. 

Samaria poses in front of trees on campus.

Poor Governance 

Our local, state and federal government have the power to work together and even create policies to enforce different rules that would be beneficial for our environment. For example, Glassboro’s local government has board meetings throughout the month that anyone is allowed to attend. There, you could express your concerns over our current environmental state and ask the members what they are doing to help Glassboro (or you could even do this in your hometown). You could also recommend different ways to allow citizens to participate in being more environmentally conscious. 

Samaria poses in the woods on campus.

Food Waste

According to foodwaste.org, “America wastes roughly 40% of its food. Of the estimated 125 to 160 billion pounds of food that goes to waste every year, much of it is perfectly edible and nutritious.” A few ways to eliminate food waste in your lifestyle and on campus is to try to adopt a healthier eating lifestyle. The SHOP at Rowan offers free fruits and vegetables to all students. They also offer Fresh For All for anyone to receive fruits and vegetables regardless of student status! The SHOP is located in room 141 of building 5.

Another way to eliminate food waste is to store food appropriately. For example, containers that will help preserve your food efficiently to make it last longer are also a great option. Stores like Target offer student discounts, which means you can use it to buy more efficient storage for your food. 

Samaria poses in the gazebo near Bunce Hall.

Plastic Pollution

The National Geographic claims that each year, “8 million tons of plastic waste escapes into the ocean…” Constantly, millions of animals around the world suffer and die at the hands of plastic, ending up in their habitats. Not only does plastic pollution hurt our wildlife, but it can end up in the food that we eat, (fish especially), overflowing landfills, overuse of fossil fuels and so much more (nonplasticbeach.com). 

The average college student can help by using reusable water bottles/straws, bringing reusable shopping bag to the store, cutting down on drinks/food that come in plastic, and most importantly… NOT LITTERING!

These are just a few ways to combat the climate and environmental crisis that are currently hurting our beautiful world. Practicing these tips and passing on the information to family and friends is a great way to start and get your foot in the door to save our planet. 

Good luck Profs! 


Earth.org. “The Biggest Environmental Problems of 2021.” Earth.org – Past | Present | Future, 17 Aug. 2021, earth.org/the-biggest-environmental-problems-of-our-lifetime/.

“15 Quick Tips for Reducing Food Waste and Becoming a FOOD HERO.” Food and Agriculture Organization of the United Nations, 29 Sept. 2020, www.fao.org/fao-stories/article/en/c/1309609/.

“100 Steps to a Plastic-Free Life ” MY Plastic-Free Life.” My Plastic-Free Life, myplasticfreelife.com/plasticfreeguide/.

Parker, Laura. “Plastic Pollution Facts and Information.” Environment, National Geographic, 3 May 2021, www.nationalgeographic.com/environment/article/plastic-pollution.


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Story by:
Samaria Wicks, senior human services major from Cumberland County, NJ, Wellness Center intern

Photos by:
Stephanie Batista, junior music industry major

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