CMN Reduces Greenhouse Gases, Cuts Costs

Feb 15th, 2010 | By | Category: 21-3: Tribal College Faculty, Spring 2010, Tribal College News

A four-lane highway runs between the two campuses of the College of Menominee Nation (CMN, Keshena, WI), providing students and staff a scenic drive from the main campus on the Menominee Reservation to the college’s urban campus in Green Bay, near Oneida Nation lands. But that 90-mile round-trip commute also worries those who are concerned about gas prices and carbon footprints.

Now, the college and the Menominee Tribal Department of Transit Services (DOTS) have partnered to offer free, door-to-door bus services for all current students and employees. They only have to call half an hour before they want to depart, according to Shawn Klemens, director of transit services.

The new service supports CMN’s efforts to reduce greenhouse gas emissions (see TCJ, Vol. 20, No. 2). It is being underwritten by the college’s Sustainable Development Institute (SDI) with Clinton Global Initiative funding.

Transportation-related emissions are the largest source of greenhouse gas emissions at CMN—and provide the best opportunity to make reductions, according to Melissa Cook, SDI’s director. “As environmental leaders we need to model what is right, and we hope many students and staff will see it that way also.”

The new service will also save money and provide free transportation for students who might lack vehicles. “Transportation is a top retention issue for tribal colleges in rural locations,” says Gary Besaw, vice president of student services at the college. “Our goal is to help reduce travel problems that cause students to miss classes, delay enrollment, or entirely miss a great opportunity to earn a college degree. If transportation was the problem, then we now have a solution.”

For more information, contact Gary Besaw at (715) 799-5600.

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