As the campus moves forward to become increasingly green, Caroline Scully, chair of the College's Sustainability Committee and coordinator of MCLA's Berkshire Environmental Resource Center, has been hard at work to assure its continued success.
From working with students to coordinating an electronics recycling pick-up last month with the College's facilities and computer support services departments, Scully is enthusiastic about MCLA's constant efforts to increase its sustainability.
Quietly passionate about her work in sustainability, she enjoys encouraging that same enthusiasm in her students.
Since she came to the campus in November 2010, Scully has been involved in a number of ventures. As the coordinator of the Berkshire Environmental Action Team, she chairs the Sustainability Committee - also known as the "Green Team" - completes carbon calculations for the President's Climate Commitment (American Colleges and Universities Climate Commitment) and advises environmental studies interns, to name but a few of her projects.
"I'm really good at networking and seeing connections and reaching out to people in and outside of the MCLA community for expertise, ideas, support and to build relationships that will help us approach reducing our carbon footprint in the best way, and also relationships that lead to funding opportunities to help fund some of these possibilities," Scully explained.
While Scully says the campus has a terrific recycling system in place, she'd like to instill an even greater understanding into the College community regarding individual items that are part of MCLA's waste stream.
And, although her list of goals to accomplish for the campus is long, one ambition is to incorporate sustainability concepts into the curriculum within all disciplines so that students - no matter what their major - will be exposed to the concepts of climate change, carbon output and the importance of considering one's impact on the environment and of sustainable practices for the future.
"I think it's very doable," Scully said. "Many faculty members already are teaching about sustainability on one level or another."
She's always had a strong interest in the local environment.
"It began from as long back as I can remember," Scully said. "I think it was both my affinity for the outdoors and for sustainability and green living. My interests have always been in the natural environment. I've always loved being outdoors. I like hiking. I like the woods. I like gardening. I'm very interested in farming and in agriculture."
She comes to MCLA with a master's degree in environmental studies from Antioch University New England in Keene, N.H. Scully was looking for a local position because she lives in the house that her mother grew up in, in nearby Adams. She, however, spent nine years growing up in London, England, and the rest of her childhood in Garrison, N.Y.
Although she's lived in cities for most of time of her childhood, as well as during her adult life, "I've always gravitated more to a rural setting. I love this area," she said.
Scully says the position feels custom made for her.
"It's doing sustainability work and it's working with students, which I really love," she explained. "It was a perfect fit to work with environmental studies interns. I will be doing some environmental studies research projects out in the community, as well."