This past week, I had the opportunity to catch up with sophomore, Caroline Payant, about Westborough High School’s Environmental Club. This club is relatively new, starting up about five years ago at WHS. Payant as well as Tiffany Zheng, a junior, are co-presidents of the club. While Mrs. Glenn usually advises, this year Ms. Lake has taken over.
Payant has been a part of the club for two years now, after it first caught her eye at freshman orientation. When asked why she joined and why the club was so important to her Payant said,
“Having lived in Germany before, when I moved to the U.S. I noticed that we do things a lot different in regard to our environment. And it really bothered me that we aren’t greener.”
Payant also mentioned that she wants to help educate our school and make a difference by helping the environment in our community.
Environmental Club does not have one specific focus, but rather it shifts depending on the current project being worked on. Last year, prior to COVID-19, Payant explained that E club planned to have a teacher competition, in which teachers tried to use the least amount of paper possible in the given period of time. Unfortunately, this was not able to happen last year but the hope is for it to occur in the future. Another project that has been discussed in the past is having a small garden space on WHS grounds where the Environmental Club could grow fruits and vegetables and practice composting.
This year, the club has already tackled a big issue in the community and the country: the idling of cars. For a couple weeks, members of Environmental club stood outside in the upper parking lot holding signs to encourage parents, who were waiting for their kids, to shut off the engine. Idling can cause major damage to the environment by polluting the atmosphere. The club also provided some students with an eye-opening fact sheet explaining the harmful effects of idling. As this project is wrapping up, Payant shared a little bit about their next big project. In the near future, Environmental Club hopes to start replacing plastic cafeteria utensils with more environmentally friendly ones. This project will aim to reduce plastic waste and encourage recycling within our school.
When asked why other people, including students at WHS should care about the environment, Payant answered,
“Keeping our environment safe is especially important for people our age. We are the next generation and will have to deal with the repercussions of not caring for the environment. We have to build environmentally friendly futures for ourselves and starting now is important”.
Environmental Club is currently looking for new members to join. Meetings are every other Wednesday at 3:30. If you are interested in joining, you can email Caroline Payantor Tiffany Zheng at the emails listed below. You can also scan the QR code above and fill out a form to join. Make sure to check the E club bulletin board located on the 2nd floor right when you walk out of the C wing!
Caroline Payant: [email protected]
Tiffany Zheng: [email protected]