Wow… now this truly is the very definition of irony:
Look over the descriptions of the following two houses and see if you can tell which belongs to an environmentalist:
- HOUSE # 1:
- A 20-room mansion (not including 8 bathrooms) heated by natural gas. Add on a pool (and a pool house) and a separate guest house all heated by gas. In ONE MONTH ALONE this mansion consumes more energy than the average American household in an ENTIRE YEAR. The average bill for electricity and
natural gas runs over $2,400.00 per month. In natural gas alone (which last time we checked was a fossil fuel), this property consumes more than 20 times the national average for an American home. This house is not in a northern or Midwestern “snow belt,” either. It’s in the South.
- HOUSE # 2:
- Designed by an architecture professor at a leading national university, this house incorporates every “green” feature current home construction can provide. The house contains only 4,000 square feet (4 bedrooms) and is nestled on arid high prairie in the American southwest. A central closet in the house holds geothermal heat pumps drawing ground water through pipes sunk 300 feet into the ground. The water (usually 67 degrees F.) heats the house in winter and cools it in summer. The system uses no fossil fuels such as oil or natural gas, and it consumes 25% of the electricity required for a conventional heating/cooling system. Rainwater from the roof is collected and funneled into a 25,000 gallon underground cistern. Wastewater from showers, sinks and toilets goes into underground purifying tanks and then into the cistern. The collected water then irrigates the land surrounding the house. Flowers and shrubs native to the area blend the property into the surrounding rural landscape.
Which sounds like the home of someone more concerned with the environment?
Originally appeared in an October 2000 issue of The Bell Ringer:
I think student apathy is a serious problem on campus. It’s going to be the death of this university. This school is what we make of it. Students are the lifeblood of Augusta State. We can make or break this university.
This is my first semester at Augusta State University. I have always felt that it was important to have a well-rounded education. I’m currently taking 12 credit hours. I hate it when I walk around and see so many students disinterested in the future of this school. To them it’s just a place to go to class. For me, it’s become so much more. You see, I’ve gotten involved. I’m a member of the Political Science Club, College Conservatives, Model League of Arab States and I am the Art Director for the Phoenix Magazine. Why did I feel it was important to get involved in activities outside of class? I care about this university. I care about how it’s going to be four years from now when hopefully I’ll walk out of here with a degree in Political Science. I care about the quality of my education. Anything that I can do to make this school a better environment for myself I will do, without question. Anything I can do to help this school become a better environment for my fellow students is even better.
Get involved. Please. Clubs and organizations on this campus exist to give students a voice. They give us forums where we can meet with people with similar interests and do things that create a better atmosphere on this campus. Get involved in a theatre production. Join a faith-based organization. Join a club that relates to your major. Just do something. Take a chance and see what else this school has to offer aside from classes. I’m tired of hearing the excuse that “I don’t have any time” or “I hate being at school any more then I have to.” Sometimes, some things are important enough to dedicate time to. I love everything that the Political Science Club has done so far this semester. We’ve held a mock election, a few voter registration drives… We’re out there… we’re educating people about politics. We are a big part of this university, and I’d like to think we’re having a positive impact. I know some clubs do take a great deal of time out of our lives. I work full-time, attend school full-time and I still try to make time for extra-curricular activities. Sure, most nights I’m not home until 10pm or later, but it’s time well spent.
Find something you love and get involved. If there isn’t a club on campus to suit your interests, start your own. I mean, what bad could possibly come from it? Otherwise, the next time you find yourself bitching about how terrible you think this school is, ask yourself, “Have I done anything to change it?” If you can’t say yes, all I have to say is keep your comments to yourself.