Drexel grounds focus on sustainability | The Triangle

Drexel grounds focus on sustainability

By Sean Vanson and Kacy Gao

Photo by Bayanne Kakhia | Toxic Free Drexel

Drexel Grounds Staff Chuck Fulmer using the New Battery-powered leaf blowers

Another beautiful day at Drexel University. The sun is shining, and all the benches and chairs are filled with students. On the grassy knolls of Lancaster Walk, a frisbee flies through the air while students on towels enjoy a Halal food picnic. A single dandelion seed flutters through the air, jostled by the movement of bypassing students. The trees sway in the breeze as flowers bloom out of the soil. Have you ever wondered how the campus looks this nice? Well, a significant part of that is from the Drexel Grounds team.

Director Scott Dunham, Assistant Director Tony Gale and the rest of the grounds team work tirelessly every day to keep our campus looking clean and fresh. In addition to their regular duties, they are constantly implementing new projects to improve the sustainability and eco-friendliness of Drexel’s grounds. One of their recent projects involves using battery-powered equipment like lawnmowers and leaf blowers; which not only reduces pollution but also saves on operating costs. This battery-powered equipment acts as a more environmentally-friendly alternative compared to gasoline-powered equipment. Less fumes in the air mean less pollution on Drexel’s campus.

The team’s efforts to promote sustainability on campus extend beyond equipment upgrades. They also prioritize sensitivity towards students with herbicide allergies by giving them warning lists of upcoming applications. In addition, they opened up the greenhouse in Stratton Hall for student use, offering a peaceful place to study surrounded by the lush and thriving plants grown on campus. Serving as a pleasant and chill place to learn while breathing fresh air from the plants, the greenhouse is a savior for the average student.

The grounds team has also worked on installing new native plants such as the hairy alumroot, common winterberry, switchgrass, common serviceberry, and northern red oak. These plants allow for more biodiversity and color on Drexel’s campus while also benefiting the campus’s ecosystem.

In addition to these projects, the Drexel grounds team has been actively focused on sustainability, as seen in their usage of eco-friendly techniques on campus. Hand-weeding all landscaped areas and tree wells, the grounds team has and continues to consider organic options for land management. These techniques include aeration, composting and soil health improvement, which have been proven to improve the soil’s water retention, save costs and improve biodiversity.

Overall, the Drexel Grounds team plays a crucial role in maintaining the beautiful campus that the university is known for. Their dedication to sustainability and eco-friendliness is commendable and serves as an inspiration to all students and faculty. Look out for all of these projects on campus, and make sure to thank the grounds team for all they do!