Focus Frostburg

FSU to Focus on Sustainability at Focus Frostburg

Frostburg State University will be fully focused on sustainability during its upcoming Focus Frostburg event, an annual day of learning on sustainability and climate awareness, on Wednesday, April 23, from 10 a.m. to 5 p.m. The event, free and open to the public, will feature green activities for everyone, including presentations in the Lane University Center, poster displays in the Compton Science Center and a sculpture garden on the front lawn of the Ort Library.

Declare Arbor Day and join FSU at the clock tower as it celebrates its second year as Tree Campus USA, from noon until 1 p.m. Plant trees and enjoy themed environmental music from the FSU Chamber Choir.

Learn all about sustainability from a wide range of presentations from faculty and students at the Lane University Center, including those on the topics of art, climate, energy, ethnobotany, food, history, religion and policy.

Climate presentations include “The Vortex, and Cold, and Snow, Oh My! The Winter of 2013-14: Why Was It so Fierce … or Was It?” which discusses this past winter season’s “polar vortex.” Energy presentations include “Personal Kinetic Energy Generation and Storage for a Sustainable Future,” which discusses generating and storing personal kinetic energy into usable energy; and “My First Year Leasing a Solar System in Frostburg: Electric Bills and Electric Production,” which reviews solar-powered electricity generation systems.

History presentations will include “With all the Wealth of the World at Hand: Industry, Ecology and the Ford Empire, 1914-1939,” which discusses how the expansion of the Ford Motor Company during the early 20th century depended on the wholesale transformation of local ecologies and green spaces on three continents. Religion presentations will include “Religion and Environmental Activism,” which features a documentary project “Renewal,” the first feature-length film to capture the vitality and diversity of today’s religious-environmental activists.

Policy presentations include “Taking Sustainability Seriously,” which discusses whether there will be enough water, air, food and materials to go around for a growing human population in the future; “Animal Welfare: An Integral Component of Sustainability,” which discusses humane and responsible management of animals to help achieve sustainable development; “El Yunque National Forest, Puerto Rico: Reflections on Visitor Experience and Resource Protection,” which discusses the current situation at El Yunque National Forest as it relates to vistors’ experience and the social and environmental impacts associated with crowding at various sites; and “Proposal for a New Student Fee for Sustainability,” which will explain why funds are needed to help purchase new equipment and upgrade campus facilities to use less energy, reduce greenhouse gas emissions and improve overall sustainability.

Art presentations will include “Wilderness in American Literature,” which addresses American identity through wild spaces. Food presentations will include “Studying Sustainable Foodways in Mountain Maryland,” which discusses techniques and practices to forge sustainable food systems.

Ethnobotany research projects include “Herbarium Revamp: Sorting, Displaying and Digitizing the FSU Herbarium Collection,” which reorganizes the FSU Herbarium to improve ease of access for students and researchers; “Tree Species and Traditional Uses of the Eastern Band of the Cherokee Nation,” which presents eight-year results collected by FSU students of planting butternuts within an established cane stand and at a control site; “Establishment of White Oak, ‘Quercus alba,’ Seedlings for Cherokee Basketry,” which presents the establishment of experimental plantations on the Kituwa site in cooperation with the Eastern Band of Cherokee Indians; and “Triple R: Re-soil, Re-seed and Re-green the FSU Campus,” which embraces and promotes the philosophy of interdisciplinary collaboration by combining the efforts of faculty and students from the departments of Geography, Biology, English and Chemistry.

See poster presentations of student sustainability projects at the Lane Center from 3 to 3:50 p.m. Student-run projects include “Case Studies in Sustainability Assessment,” which provides an overview of the sustainability studies minor while featuring student’s experientially based work this semester; “Taking Action Now Student Sierra Club,” which presents a slide show of all Sierra Club trips and discusses hydraulic fracturing; and student-designed “Sustainability Poster Presentations,” which covers topics including food, medicine, health, feral cats, a native tree nursery, impacts of de-icing salt, student perceptions and mindsets, improved recycling and the psychology of sustainability.

Visit the Discovery Center on the first floor of the Compton Science Center to learn about opportunities for students of any major to get involved with the Frostburg Grows project, a native tree nursery, local food production, composting, renewable energy and training center on a former coal mine near the FSU campus. Then, help plant and transplant native tree seeds and seedlings, including black gum, red oak and black walnut.

Throughout the day, browse the informational displays at the Compton Science Center’s Discovery Center. Displays include the Frostburg Arboretum Display, providing information about the current status and history of the campus arboretum; FSU’s Sustainability Initiative, detailing the progress of FSU’s sustainability initiative plan; and Bottled Houses, revealing some of the uses for recycled bottles.

Drop by the sculpture garden on the front lawn of the Ort Library as creatures created from recycled aluminum fly toward the University’s center for learning. The project, featuring flying animals considered endangered and themed as a “Parade of the Species,” was created to engage the landscapes, create art with an ecological theme and work with the theme of education.

Participate in this year’s “Reduce, Reuse, Recycle” online poster contest, which highlights the talent and creativity of FSU graphic design students. Help communicate environmental awareness for FSU’s celebration of Earth Week by viewing and voting for the 26 student-designed posters at First prize is $100, second prize is $50 and third prize is $25. Voting lasts until midnight on Earth Day, Tuesday, April 22. Winners will be announced Friday, April 25.

For more information, visit

Wednesday, April 23, 2014 at 10:00am to 5:00pm

Event Type

Lectures/Speakers, Seminars/Workshops



Free and open to the public

Phone for Info


Contact Person

Dr. Kara Rogers Thomas

Contact E-mail


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