Students’ responsibility to keep our campus clean

Lily Kime, A&E Editor

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When I think about Luther, many things come to mind, both positive and negative. But one positive attribute that I tend to think about when I consider Luther is the clean and well-kept campus. Sure, our grass looks suspiciously weed-free, and that is almost certainly because of significant chemical exposure. And maybe our campus is leaf-free because of the strange aversion to leaves someone in charge of the groundskeeping seems to have. But no matter! Despite these odd choices, I think of campus as a clean and nicely kept place to spend time. Unfortunately, this opinion is slowly eroding away, one tin can at a time.

Lately when I walk around campus, I have started to notice that the clean campus I am accustomed to seeing is starting to have trash lying around. As I walk in front of Larsen, I sometimes see a soda can lying on the grass and wrapper bags strewn around the sidewalk as I walk up the sidewalk to Sampson-Hoffland. Maybe I have had blinders on for the past three years, but seeing trash all over the place strikes me as surprising. It also makes me frustrated that the students at Luther are choosing to dispose of garbage wherever they please when there are trash cans and recycling bins in every single building on campus. Heck, there are even trash cans outside of buildings. So why is there such a mess?

A place where I notice the mess the most is in the Anderson Prairie. I frequently see cans lining the edge of it, and there was even a strand of caution tape wrapped around some drying grasses at the edge of the Prairie closest to Lillehammer.

“I grow increasingly disappointed to see this campus become less well kept than I knew it to be.”

– Lily Kime (‘19)

What strikes me as terribly ironic about this unexpected issue is that it was just two years ago that many students here at Luther openly opposed the possibility of Anderson Prairie becoming the site of the new elementary school because, I assume, they value the land as it is without human interference. Instead of appreciating it, it seems like some people on campus are able to toss their trash all over the place without considering how obnoxious their actions are.

I realize that only about half of the students here at Luther today were on campus when the debate over Anderson Prairie happened, but I do not think that this change of students is to blame for the garbage on campus, especially considering that some of the worst piles of garbage that I have seen this year have been in Baker Village. Yeah, I’m looking at you, Bergen. I see the pile of cans outside of your house many Sunday mornings. To be fair, y’all do a good job of cleaning it up in a relatively timely manner. But why is it there at all?

I grow increasingly disappointed to see this campus become less well kept than I knew it to be. The groundskeeping crew does all they can to keep Luther looking immaculate, but students need to hold themselves more accountable for maintaining Luther’s campus, or in the very least finding trash cans and recycling bins to put their trash in and not all around Luther’s campus.

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