Q&A with Margot Paolucci, Undergraduate Student Government Senator at Large for Sustainability, Junior, Environmental and Conservation Biology Major, Hometown: Medina, OH
Office of Sustainability Newsletter November 2020
What is your role as Undergraduate Student Government Senator for Sustainability?
As Senator at Large for Sustainability, I serve as the liaison between the students and the administration for anything having to do with sustainability at Kent State University. It is my responsibility to listen to student concerns and to advocate for change at a higher level.
What sustainability initiatives are students interested in seeing at Kent State?
Right now, there is a lot of concern with food waste in the dining halls. That’s why it’s so exciting to see Grind2Energy in the DI HUB! There is also a lot of interest in reducing the use of plastic bags and straws on our campus. Although, most of what I am hearing currently has to do with composting and excess food waste in the dining halls.
What are you currently working on as USG Senator for Sustainability?
Currently, I am working on a large project with a few student organizations including the Student Left Coalition, Young Democratic Students of America, Sunrise Movement, United Students Against Sweatshops, and Student Democratic Society. These organizations have come forward with concerns regarding Aramark on our campus. Aramark is Kent State’s third-party food-provider in all of the dining halls. Some of the concerns include wages, worker organization, and overall sustainability of the company on our campus. I am currently working toward addressing these student concerns.
How can students get involved?
Getting involved in USG is easy! There are Senators for each college at the University, and each of those senators have their own senatorial committee that any student can serve on. Reach out to your Senator or another Senator at Large (like me) and ask how you can get involved! Elections for USG positions for the next academic year will be held in the Spring semester and petitions for those wishing to run for Undergraduate Student Government will be available online at kentstateusg.com in mid-January 2021). Make sure to check USG’s Instagram page or website for more information on how to run for a position.
What is your favorite part of your position?
I love that I am able to actively participate in sustainability at KSU. Being able to speak with faculty and administration and work to make even the smallest of changes on our campus is so rewarding.
What is your area of interest or major? What made you interested in pursuing this area?
I am pursuing a degree in Environmental and Conservation Biology. When I was in high school, I started to research climate change. The information I found made me incredibly passionate about environmental conservation. From that point on, conservation and sustainability became my biggest passion. I am hoping to move on to law school after Kent State, and become an environmental attorney. I am excited to continue advocating for sustainability in my future.
Have you been involved with other organizations on campus? If so which ones and what types of things did the organization do or you work on?
I have always been active with Ocean Motion. Ocean Motion is a marine conservation organization. We focus on ocean conservation even from here in Ohio. Conservation education, beach clean-ups, and tree plantings are some of the things we focus on in the group. I strongly recommend joining! We always have a lot of fun while making a huge difference.
What are your favorite accomplishments or projects you have worked on so far?
Mostly, I have been working on the project on Aramark. I like this project because of how important it is to me as well as many other students. Seeing small progress on this project is very exciting. I also enjoyed the project I worked on with the Kent State Recreation Center. With their help, the recycling system at the SWRC is being completely updated! Even this small change is so rewarding. I think that in sustainability, even the smallest of changes are so important!
Thank you Margot!