Saint Mary’s to go ‘strawless’ to help protect the environment

January 16, 2018 (Notre Dame, Ind.) — Plastic straws have negative environmental consequences — and Saint Mary’s is doing something about it. Beginning Monday, January 15, plastic straws will no longer be provided in the College’s Dining Hall.

The campaign launched by President Jan Cervelli, Carolyn Arcuri ’18 and Kristhel Torre ’18 and Sodexo Saint Mary’s helps combat plastic waste by limiting the use of straws on campus. It’s estimated that Americans throw away 500 million plastic straws every day.

“Disposable straws are piling up in landfills and harming the environment, adding substantially to the tons of plastic waste discharged into the ocean and lakes every year,” Cervelli said. “If you can make a choice to skip using a plastic straw, why not? And if you can make this one choice, maybe you can do even more.”

Director of Dining Services Sodexo Saint Mary’s Ken Acosta is looking into providing reusable straws for purchase. Eco-friendlier options include glass, silicone or stainless-steel washable straws.

Straws are still available at cafes on campus, but the Saint Mary’s community is encouraged to avoid using them. To join the movement on social media, use the hashtag #SkipTheStraw, and check out the anti-straw advocacy organization The Last Plastic Straw

About Saint Mary's College: Celebrating 175 years of empowering women to make a difference in the world, Saint Mary’s College is recognized as a pioneer in the education of women. A Catholic, liberal arts institution in Notre Dame, Indiana, the College offers more than 50 academic programs and also offers co-educational master’s degrees in data science, speech language pathology, autism studies, and a Doctorate of Nursing Practice.

Contact for News Media: Haleigh Ehmsen, Assistant Director of Integrated Communications, Saint Mary’s College, hehmsen@saintmarys.edu (574) 284-5343