Care.Connection.Community with Sarah Bavuso

Wednesday, Apr 22, 2020

An Earth Day message from Sarah Bavuso

Sarah Bavuso, Sustainability Manager, runs the Smoothie Bike station during the 2017 Earth Day celebrations.

Sarah Bavuso, Sustainability Manager, runs the Smoothie Bike station during the 2017 Earth Day celebrations.
April 2017

Happy Earth Day! I hope that wherever you are, you can take a moment to be still and embrace Spring literally unfolding before you in the leaves and blossoms, waking from their winter slumber. We have before us a unique opportunity to experience so many once in a lifetime events as we pause our daily routines. 

We are seemingly breathing easier with less air pollution; seeing a marked stillness in seismometers that measure vibrations of our transportation patterns and pounding of the pavements in cities; hearing the sounds of nature in unexpected places and at volumes we are not used to—have birds always been this loud before sunrise and what about those tree frogs at dusk? Even more rarified are the real reports of wildlife reclaiming the empty streets of cities across the globe. It feels surreal sometimes.

This feeling of being suspended in time provides us a glimpse into what we hope a future with no air pollution could look like. However, it will surely end and we will all rush back to our routines and old habits. On some fronts sustainability has taken a huge hit with the resurgence of single use disposables as a necessary tool to protect our health. But as my colleague Theresa Crotty thoughtfully reminded me last week, “… sustainability, this virus has done a job on that, but we’ll get back to better ways.”

That reminder of hope also came with an assurance that while we may be apart, we are not alone. As we move forward, I think back to the saying “if you want to go fast, go alone; but if you want to go far, go together.”

Now more than ever we are realizing the importance of staying connected and how closely caring for the environment and caring for ourselves and others are intertwined. While the Campus Dining team strives to provide dining experiences that are both good for you and the planet, we cannot do this alone. Together we will continue to focus on; one ounce, one cup, and one step at a time, through the collective impact of our individual acts.

-Sarah Bavuso, Sustainability Manager



An Earth Day message from Smitha Haneef

A colorful display of vegetables and edible flowers at Forbes dining hall as guests entered for Flexitarian Night.

Display at Forbes dining hall as guests entered for Flexitarian Night. April 2018.

At Princeton University Campus Dining we foster a culture of sustainability. I view our work in food systems, from meeting our farmers and producers to training and skills building for my organization, as a way to build upon that culture of sustainability. We bring engaging learning experiences for our students through teaching kitchens, visit to the farms, and Tiger Chef Challenge. Our collective collaborative partnership between Campus Dining and the Office of Sustainability allows us to advance an ethos of sustainability for Princeton University and beyond. My colleague, Shana Weber’s thought leadership in this field of sustainability inspires our campus community to implement actions. We celebrate every action that promotes our shared vision for healthy sustainable food systems at Princeton University and beyond.

-Smitha Haneef, Assistant Vice President, University Services



A message to our community

As we acclimate to the new ways on campus, I realize so much has changed in just a few days. Some of the things that gave me the most joy, such as meeting with our students, talking with you during special events, or meeting my colleagues can no longer happen in the same way, at least for the time being. Along with my team, I wanted to think of ways to keep our connections alive, continue to show our care, and engage with our community. That being said, we are starting a new series called, Care.Connection.Community through which we will share messages with you.

Stay healthy and be well,