November 8, 2019
Triton College earns Bee Campus USA designation, affirming commitment to sustainability
Triton College has become the 82nd educational institution in the nation to be certified as an affiliate of the Bee Campus USA program, designed to draw upon the strengths of educational institutions for the benefit of pollinators. Triton joins more than one-hundred-fifty other cities and campuses across the country united in improving their landscapes for pollinators.
“Triton is already involved in Monarch Butterfly conservation as a monarch waystation and we are a Tree Campus USA,” said Triton College sustainability coordinator Adrian Fisher. “Adding Bee Campus USA further strengthens our commitment to environmental sustainability.”
Triton is committed to minimizing hazards to pollinators and raising awareness about the plight of pollinators. Triton plans to publish information on the campus Sustainability Center webpage to disseminate information to the campus and external communities including a list of native plants incorporated into the campus landscape, links to student and faculty research into pollinator issues and information about upcoming events.
Triton College biology faculty member Joe Beuchel is excited about increased opportunities for student research and service-learning. Faculty, staff and students have already begun working together to study and create pollinator habitat with native plants.
“Students are frequently surprised by the difference in biodiversity of flora and fauna in our native gardens versus the typical turf grass that covers most properties, Beuchel said. “Numerous courses offered in biology and horticulture include pollinators in their syllabi and removing invasive species is an important student activity during campus workdays.”
Bee City USA and Bee Campus USA are initiatives of the Xerces Society for Invertebrate Conservation, a nonprofit organization based in Portland, Oregon, with offices across the country. Bee City USA’s mission is to galvanize communities and campuses to sustain pollinators by providing them with healthy habitat, rich in a variety of native plants and free of pesticides. Pollinators like bumble bees, sweat bees, mason bees, honey bees, butterflies, moths, beetles, flies, hummingbirds and many others are responsible for the reproduction of almost ninety percent of the world's flowering plant species and one in every three bites of food we consume.
“The program aspires to make people more PC—pollinator conscious, that is,” said Scott Hoffman Black, Xerces’ executive director. “If lots of individuals and communities begin planting native, pesticide-free flowering trees, shrubs and perennials, it will help to sustain many, many species of pollinators.”
According to Bee Campus USA founder Phyllis Stiles, “Each certified campus must renew their certification each year and report on accomplishments from the previous year. Other institutions of higher education are invited to explore completing the application process outlined at beecityusa.org.”
For more information about Triton’s Bee Campus USA program, contact Adrian Fisher at (708) 456-0300, ext. 3364 or email firstname.lastname@example.org.