On November 1, students in SNHU’s Environmental Issues Learning Community participated in planting spring bulbs in the wildflower gardens by the Shapiro Library. Beginning around 8 A.M., students from SCI 219, English 120, and SNHU 101, the three classes that make up the Learning Community, came together to plant daffodils and other spring flowers for bees to pollinate when they wake up.
Professor Allison Cummings, who helped coordinate the event, spoke on the importance of the community aspect of the program as well as the environmental impact. “We saw this as sort of an experiential [opportunity] for students. Partly because it will make students feel more connected to where they are, and partly because when this wildflower garden comes alive in the spring there’s almost nothing else for pollinators,” said Cummings.
Expressing a similar sentiment, first-year student Katie Snipes said, “I appreciate the sense of community associated with this event.”
Cummings also shared the damaging environmental effects that could take place if these flowers were not planted now. “Most flowers take a long time to come up and then bloom so it’s not really until mid-summer that there’s pollen for bees,” she explained, “and there’s a huge issue with pollinators not having food and losing habitat.”
As well as extending the pollinating season for the benefit of bees, students contributed to their community through this event by helping to beautify and add color to the campus. “It also had the added bonus for students and people walking around to be able to see some kind of color in the spring season because it’s otherwise pretty muddy and barren out here” said Cummings.
Academic Advisor Neena Fink offered more insight into the Learning Community and how it works. The students in the three classes are all first-year students from various majors who share a common interest in environmental issues. Events like this help to “focus the classes on this common theme, bring students together, and also to do some service for our greater SNHU community” said Fink.