Students receive sustainability grants


In its second round of grants, the Office of Sustainability awarded $20,000 to six students to develop proposals designed to protect the campus environment. The six selected from 21 grant proposals address priorities outlined in UGA’s 2020 Strategic Plan to conserve resources, educate the campus community about environmental issues and provide research to further sustainability at the university. Recipients are:


  • Brandi Bishop, a senior agricultural education major at the Tifton campus, who will develop a recycling program there, installing 60 waste reduction stations in 15 of the busiest buildings on the campus and implementing a public relations campaign to encourage recycling. 
  • Katie Shepard, a master’s student in the department of crop and soil sciences, who will monitor the effectiveness of an East Campus rain garden at filtering pollutants from storm water runoff. Shepard’s project will take soil moisture and water quality measurements to determine how well the rain garden does its job. 
  • Chris McDowell, a master’s student in the College of Environment and Design, who will work with authorities to collect waste items from construction sites and, with the help of volunteers, reuse materials to complete construction projects that benefit the campus and local community. 
  • JoHannah Biang, a master’s student in horticulture, who will construct a living wall of seasonal herbs and vegetables at UGArden on South Milledge Avenue to research and demonstrate the effectiveness of vertical gardening. The herbs and vegetables will be harvested by Campus Kitchens for distribution to the Northeast Georgia Food Bank and community members in need. 
  • Graham Pickren, a doctoral student in geography, who will expand a program that collects, donates and recycles unwanted items from student residence halls during move-out week. Pickren will be working with Dawgs Ditch the Dumpster Move-Out Donation Program to implement an electronic waste collection to go along with the clothing and furniture donation program. 
  • Zach Richardson, a senior landscape architecture student, who will create a prescribed grazing program using goats to remove exotic invasive plants and restore native forest adjacent to Tanyard Creek. 

Last year, the office awarded $13,000 to fund four projects: to install water bottle refilling stations in the Miller Learning Center, to create a rainwater harvesting system at the UGArden, to establish the Dawgs Ditch the Dumpster move-out donation program and to start a bike share program on East Campus, a project that is still in progress. 
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