SWAP pushes for plastic straw ban on campus with Suck Sustainably event

Merry May Ma | Contributing Reporter

Sharing With A Purpose handed out free reusable metal straws to students Nov. 30. Students also had the opportunity to make holders for their straws from upcycled shirts.

Students had the choice between a bent metal straw and a straight straw. Sharing With a Purpose (SWAP) handed out 110 straws that day. Junior Alyssa Style, who worked on the campaign, said that the total cost of the event was approximately $115.

“I always get a cup to grab water at Bear’s Den, so I am saving a lot of straws now,” freshman Sparkle Whitaker said.

Sophomore Claire Irawan, SWAP employee and Student Sustainability Board member, said she was excited to promote the use of reusable straws and continue efforts to remove plastic straws from campus.

“We came out with the idea to try banning plastic straws on campus because they will pollute oceans and we want to protect marine animals who are not doing too well because of pollution,” Irawan said. “We had a campaign last semester called ‘No Straw Please’ where we gave out our metal straws.”

Alyssa Style also worked on the campaign for a year.

“This has been really exciting for me,” Style said. “It is uplifting given how many people are interested in sustainability nowadays.”

The event coordinator, senior Sylvie Skene, said she wants to see more progress on campus in regards to reducing the use of plastic utensils.

“I remember there were compostable utensils in Hillman until two years ago, but they got rid of them, so I wondered why they were moving backward in everything,” Skene said. “Hopefully this event will promote [the reduced use of plastic straws] as well.”