Environmental Sustainability

Misericordia University Mercy Hall

At Misericordia University, students receive a quality education through both powerful, career-focused academic programs as well as opportunities to participate in our Charisms of Mercy, Service, Justice, and Hospitality. It is our aim to to help mold students into compassionate, ethical human beings who will create a better future and a better world.

Through both an Environmental Sustainability Committee comprised of faculty and staff, and a Student Environmental Sustainability Committee, the University has made significant progress with raising awareness on issues surrounding environmental sustainability and creating change across campus.


In the spirit of our Mercy heritage, and the Sisters of Mercy Critical Concern of “Care for Earth”, the Committee strives to ensure that the University continues on the path to being good stewards of planet earth. The Committee is committed to raising awareness of the interconnectedness of all earth’s life through education of the Misericordia community and advocacy to adopt behaviors that reflect those consistent with sustainability and the reduction of our carbon footprint.

2019 Earth Day Reflection

Recent Initiatives and Achievements

  • President signed Catholic Climate Declaration (2018)
  • Creation of Pollinator Garden (2019)
  • Campus Survey on Environmental Sustainability by Student Committee (2019)
  • Campus Sustainability Assessment Initiative (utilizing a template from the Sustainability Tracking, Assessment & Rating System) - (2018-2019)
  • Placement of Recycling Bins at Mangelsdorf Field for football games (2017)
  • Student Committee advocated for elimination of use of take-out bags at Chick-Fil-A for patrons eating in restaurant (2017)
  • Environmental Sustainability placed in University's Strategic Plan for the first time (2018)
  • University became registered member of the Association of the Advancement of Sustainability in Higher Education (2018)
  • Cougars Print Services announce efforts in environmental sustainability (2018)
  • Advocated for Metz to obtain and sell reusable salad containers for regular salad patrons (2018-2019)
  • Metz Dining Services went strawless in main dining room - except for those who ask (2018-2019)
  • Starbucks started using strawless and recyclable lids (2019)
  • Meatless Mondays in the dining room started during Earth Week (2019)
  • Yearly Celebration of Earth Week (more departments are participating by offering events/activities)

Did You Know ...

  • misericordia students on environmental walking tourThe consumption of the average U.S. Citizen requires 18 tons of natural resources, per person, per year, and generates an even higher volume of waste
  • Less than 1% of the world's water is available for human use
  • A New York to Los Angeles plane trip generates 1.8 tons of carbon dioxide per person
  • Americans use 2,500,000 plastic bottles every hour
  • Rainforests are being cut down at the rate of 100 acres a minute
  • Recycling one aluminum can saves enough energy to run a television for three hours, or the equivalent of half a gallon of gasoline
  • Recycling a single run of the Sunday NY Times would save 75,000 trees
  • The energy saved from recycling one glass bottle can run a 100-watt light bulb for four hours, or a compact florescent bulb for 20 hours. It also uses 20% less air pollution and 50% less water pollution than when a new bottle is made from raw materials

Earth Week

Earth Week 2019

Reduce the Use of Single-Use Plastics
& Global Climate Change
April 23–April 27, 2019

Misericordia student 2019 Earth Week shirt

Environmental Sustainability Did You Know Poster

Environmental Sustainability Committee Members

Sr. Cindy March, Chair
Associate Director of Mission Integration
VP Mission Integration Office

Kim Caffrey
Executive Assistant to Vice President
VP Mission Integration Office

Anna Fedor
Associate Professor
Chemistry Department

Laurie Finnegan
Project Manager Facilities - Grounds Manager
Grounds Department

Jim Hedglin
Custodial Supervisor
Housekeeping Department

Paige May
Assistant to the Director of Athletics
Athletics Department

Gina Oriolo
Graduate Residence Hall Director
Residence Life Department

Dave Pasquini
Enrollment Marketing Coordinator
Enrollment Marketing Department

Charles Richardson
Dean, College of Business
Business Department

Anthony Serino
Associate Professor
Biology Department

Chris Somers
Director of Campus Ministry
Campus Ministry Department

Cosima Wiese
Biology Department

Kathy Zawatski
Administrative Assistant
Student Success Center

Sr. Jean Messaros
VP Mission Integration/Administrative Liaison
VP Mission Integration Office

Recycling at Misericordia Video

Prior Initiatives and Achievements

  • Environmental Sustainability Committee established (2015)
  • Recycling Educational and Awareness Initiative - especially regarding single-stream recycling (2016)
  • Placement of Recycling Bins in every office and classroom in collaboration with the MU Employee Leadership Group (2017)
  • Initiated Student Environmental Sustainability Committee (2017)
  • Inclusion of Program on Environmental Sustainability in First-Year Student Orientation (2017, 2018, 2019)
  • Adoption of Campus-wide Water Bottle Practice -eliminating plastic water bottles from events (2018)
  • Collaboration with Metz Dining Services for Removal of Plastic Straws in Dining Hall
  • Installation of Dog Stations (that have biodegradable waste bags and signs that direct dog walkers to leash and pick after their dogs on campus) - (2017)
  • Advocated for the use of reuseable cups at Starbucks (2017)
  • Styrofoam cups banned for athletic team use by Athletic Director (2017)
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