Meet Princeton's EcoReps!

all student montage
Posted on February 27, 2017

This spring, the Office of Sustainability welcomed many new students to serve as Princeton Ecology Representatives (EcoReps), a group that was founded in 2004. The mission of the EcoReps is to promote the integration of sustainability practices into campus life. Here you can learn about each of the group's projects, and the student EcoReps leading them.      

Greening Dorms 

The Greening Dorm team is focused on advancing sustainability in residential buildings on campus. Activities include engaging students in sustainability issues through study breaks, dinner tables, and clothing swaps. In addition to a core leadership group, each residential college has at least one student Residential College Liaison (RCL).  

Leaders

Amber Lin '19

Amber Lin

Major: Civil & Environmental Engineering/Architecture

Hometown:Edison, NJ

Why I applied to be an EcoRep: I believe environmental sustainability is a complex topic that really affects every person, and is also often misunderstood. I applied to be an EcoRep because I wanted to understand sustainability better for myself and to excite other students about environmental sustainability through projects that can really make a difference on campus.

What does sustainability mean to me?: I define sustainability as maintaining an environment well suited to meet the needs of current and future societies.

Fun fact: I play contract bridge competitively!


Daniel Pan '18

Dan Pan

Major: EEB

Hometown: West Virginia

Why I applied to be an EcoRep: I could always tell people what to do to be more sustainable, but some may find it to be too troublesome to live sustainably and may end up forgetting what I told them. However, as an EcoRep, I have been able to make a bigger impact not only by helping people understand how to be more sustainable, but also by making it easier and more personally meaningful for others to live more sustainably.  

What sustainability means to me?: Sustainability is the goal of living in a way that doesn't compromise future generations' abilities to live in a similar way. 

Fun fact: I once met someone called Peter Pan, but she did not know the significance of her name. 


Kelly Van Baalen '19

Kelly Van Baalen

Major: Molecular Biology

Hometown: Basking Ridge, NJ

Why I applied to be an EcoRep: I've always cared about the environment and done things in my daily life to reflect that, so when I saw the chance to make an impact outside of myself I knew I had to take it.

What sustainability means to me: Acting in a way that ensures that the future will be at least as good as the present.

Fun fact: I am a really good water skier.


Erin Mooz '19

Erin Mooz

Major: Ecology and Evolutionary Biology

Hometown: Boulder, CO

Why I applied to be an EcoRep: I applied to be an EcoRep to help educate and encourage my peers to appreciate and preserve our Earth through the daily little things.  

What sustainability means to me: Sustainability to me means a love and respect of the resources our planet offers and a resulting desire to protect and maintain them.

Fun fact: I love to hike and I've climbed the world's highest active volcano! (Cotopaxi in Ecuador)


Residential College Liaisons

Catherine Song '20 (Mathey)

Catherine Song

Major: Geosciences or Civil/Environmental Engineering

Why I applied to be an EcoRep: Sustainability and the environment is becoming ever increasingly so important to every facet of the way we live. Not enough people realize or care about their individual impact on the environment, and I want to change that starting here on campus.

What sustainability means to me: Sustainability, to me, is working to achieve zero net waste - we give back exactly the resources we take.

Fun fact: Whenever I get sushi, I eat all the wasabi first.


Laurie Zielinski '20 (Mathey)

Laurie Zielinski

Major: A prospective geosciences major

Hometown: Sandwich, Massachusetts

Why I applied to be an EcoRep: I applied to be an EcoRep because sustainability has always played an enormous role in my life (especially sustainable agriculture), and I wanted to continue pursuing this interest in a formal capacity at Princeton. It’s so rewarding to know that some of my efforts have actually benefitted the world, although I know that there will always be a lot more work to do.

What sustainability means to me: To me, sustainability is the ability of a practice to preserve present ecosystems and support future generations—with respect to both humans and other organisms.

Fun fact: I never leave my dorm without a hat and a tiny jar of maple syrup!


Dee-Dee Huang '20 (Rocky)

Dee-Dee Huang

Major: ORFE

Hometown: Houston, TX

Why I applied to be an EcoRep: I wanted to be more involved in sustainability efforts around campus, and this seemed like the best way to do so! I just want to get everyone else in the community, especially in my residential college, as hype about sustainability as I am! I believe that sustainability efforts have to start locally first, and what better way than connecting with others through my res college?

What sustainability means to me: For me sustainability is just ensuring that in all you do, you’re conscious of limiting your effect on the environment, whether that be through eliminating food waste to taking careful notice of recycling rules!

Fun fact: Parks and Rec is my favorite TV Show! 


Beimnet Shitaye '20 (Rocky)

Beimnet Shitaye

Major: BSE Undecided

Hometown: Virginia

Why I applied to be an EcoRep: I wanted to be involved in incorporating sustainability on campus. It was the perfect opportunity to be involved in a topic I am interested in, but might not be able to explore within my academic studies. 

What sustainability means to me: Sustainability to me is maintaining the beautiful components of nature and taking care of our planet!

Fun fact: I was born in Germany.


Daniel Tjondro '20 (Whitman)

Daniel Tjondro

Major: I'm planning to major in CEE

Hometown: I'm from Queens, NY (the best borough).

Why I applied to be an EcoRep: I wanted to become an EcoRep to help make Princeton a greener school.

What sustainability means to me: To me, sustainability is all about using what you have for as long as you can.

Fun fact: I can juggle.


Nick Ritter '20 (Forbes)

Nicholas Ritter

Major: Undecided

Hometown:Summit, NJ

Why I applied to be an EcoRep: I'm interested in clean energy and sustainability. The role of Forbes RCL was a great fit for me because of my connection with the Forbes community and passion for sustainability.

What sustainability means to me: The practice of using resources in such a way so that they don't run out.

Fun fact: I'm the oldest of 4 brothers.


Katherine Miao '20 (Forbes)

Katherine Miao

Major: Economics

Hometown: About an hour north of Princeton 

Why I applied to be an EcoRep: I have always wanted to get involved with environmental awareness and more importantly, the opportunity to improve sustainability within college campuses. Being an EcoRep allows me the chance to implant even the smallest seed of change and I am so excited to see where it will grow! 

What sustainability means to me: Sustainability is knowing the line between clean living and excessive consumption. It’s also taking steps to reduce the human impact on our Earth. 

Fun fact: I have a Shih-tzu named Daisy, and she can always make me smile :)


Lillian Chen '20 (Forbes)

Lillian Chen

Hometown: Houston, Texas

Major: Chronically undeclared, possibly Economics, or independent major in Data Journalism

Why I applied to be EcoRep: I love this earth and I love Princeton--therefore I want to make both thrive together as best I can!

What sustainability means to me: The ability to sustain our world with the most natural and efficient processes. Sustainability is both action and mindset--it's about being conscious of our actions and finding more efficient ways to live that also benefit nature and animals. 

Fun fact: I have a food-waste saving startup!


Daniel Qian '19 (Butler)

Daniel Qian

Major: Sociology Major, planning on getting certificates in Environmental Studies and Global Health and Health Policy

Hometown: East Brunswick, NJ

Why I applied to be an EcoRep: I applied to be an EcoRep because I think that while Princeton gives back to the world in so many ways, there's still a lot we can do on campus as a university to be more sustainable and become a model for environmental awareness.

What sustainability means to me: To me, sustainability means maintaining a balance between the way we live and the environment such that our world's resources aren't being depleted at a rate that can't keep up with our lifestyles. 

Fun fact: I've been an extra on a TV show before!


Michele Montas '20 (Wilson)

Michele Montas

Major: Philosophy

Hometown: NYC

Why I applied to be an EcoRep: I applied because Princeton is a place that is deceivingly wasteful, but has incredible potential to become more green. 

What sustainability means to me: Sustainability means meeting environmental, economic and social needs without compromising those of future generations.   

Fun fact: French is my native language


Melissa Yuan '20 (Wilson)

Melissa Yuan

Major: Chemical and Biological Engineering

Hometown: Oak Ridge, Tennesee

Why I applied to be an EcoRep: I applied to become a EcoRep to have the most social impact on campus concerning sustainability and environmental awareness.

What sustainability means to me: I define sustainability as the capacity to prolong our natural resources while minimizing our impact on the environment. 

Fun fact: I have played the piano, violin, clarinet, ocarina, and harmonica!


Greening Reunions        

The Greening Reunions team works to advance sustainability practices at Reunions. Activities include raising awareness about sustainability through communications, encouraging waste reduction and increasing recycling. 

Leaders

Maj Halaweh '19

Maj Halaweh

Major: Politics concentration

Hometown: Northern Michigan

Why I applied to be an EcoRep: Growing up near the shores of Lake Michigan, I learned the importance of conserving of the environment and sustainability. I found EcoReps in February of my freshman year and it has been the perfect avenue for me to explore my interest in sustainability. 

What sustainability means to me: Sustainability is a conscious understanding that views everything as being precious and therefore, the commitment to repair something when it is broken and opt for choices that are renewable.  

Fun fact: I have jet-skied between four countries. 


Kelly Van Baalen '19

See bio above!


Erin Mooz '19

See bio above!


Aleks Cvetkovic '18

Aleks Cvetkovic

Major: EEB

Hometown: Jenkintown, PA

Why I applied to be an EcoRep: I wanted to help make sustainability a part of students' day-to-day lives. The habits we develop in college will stay with us long after we graduate, so it's important that we develop habits that reduce our environmental impact.

What sustainability means to me: Sustainability means using our natural resources responsibly so that they're available for future generations. It can come into play at all scales, from how we act on a daily basis to the long-lasting policy decisions legislators make.

Fun fact: I love to sew. When I was younger I used to make stuffed animals and quilts.


Greening Athletics  

These EcoReps are working to promote sustainability at athletic events on campus through communications, waste reduction and recycling.   

Leaders

Alie Fordyce '19

Alie Fordyce

Major: Architecture with Environmental Studies certificate

Hometown: Switzerland 

Why I applied to be an EcoRep: I wanted to be a part of a unique group on campus that is wholeheartedly concerned with sustainability and taking action to make the campus a more conscious environment. It's important to take action, rather than just talk about why something is important. 

What sustainability means to me: Making environmental consciousness a fundamental part of the way we live and taking responsibility for the well-being of the future 

Fun fact: I am on the Cross Country and Track and Field Team here on campus. 


Taylor Bacon '19

Taylor Bacon

Major: Chemical and Biological Engineering

Hometown: Santa Fe, NM

Why I applied to be an EcoRep: I grew up exploring the mountains of New Mexico, and have always had a strong appreciation for the natural world…I want to do everything I can to protect and preserve our beautiful planet, and EcoReps seemed like an awesome way to get involved with sustainability on the Princeton Campus.

What sustainability means to me: developing healthy equilibrium between humanity and the planet.

Fun fact: I have synesthesia, so all my numbers, letters, etc. have colors!


Ricky Swanton '19

Ricky Swanton

Major: Woodrow Wilson School with and Italian Certificate

Hometown: Boston, Massachusetts

Why I applied to be an EcoRep: I applied because I wanted have an impact on the Princeton community and be able to create projects in a team environment.

What sustainability means to me: Sustainability is moderation that allows everyone, both now and in the future, to have the same access to resources on Earth.

Fun fact: I have never seen an episode of The Bachelor


Greening the Street      

The Greening the Street EcoReps are focused on elevating sustainability as a priority across all eating clubs by encouraging a culture of sustainability on Prospect Avenue.

Leaders

Quinn Parker '18

Quinn Parker

Major: EEB, Certificate in Environmental Studies 

Hometown: Truckee, California 

Why I applied to be an EcoRep: I wanted to become more engaged with the sustainability efforts on campus, and I thought that there was a lot that could be done in the way of sustainability within the eating clubs. 

What sustainability means to me: I define sustainability as a way of living that decreases your carbon footprint in the world, and in general promoting "green" habits that reduce consumption and help the environment. 

Fun fact: I've been skiing since I was 1 year old! 


Mark Goldstein '18

Mark Goldstein

Major: Woodrow Wilson School

Hometown: Boston, MA

Why I applied to be an EcoRep: I am passionate about environmental issues and sustainability and wanted an opportunity to affect positive change around these issues on campus. 

What sustainability means to me: recognizing that most of the resources we use are not infinite and taking action to reduce our consumption of finite resources as individuals and as a community. 

Fun fact: I am on the Men's Rugby team 


Cecilia Shang '18

Cecilia Shang

Major: Woodrow Wilson School of International and Public Affairs, with certificates in Environmental studies, cognitive science and dance

Hometown: Victoria, BC, Canada

Why I applied to be an EcoRep: To engage more directly with sustainability on campus, to learn more about sustainability myself, and work to change the culture of sustainability at Princeton.

What sustainability means to me: I admit this is not quite answering the question, but I really like a quote I read from an article online, and I think sustainability requires that we make major shifts in values “from having to being, from getting to giving, from richer to better, from separate to connected, from apart from nature to part of nature, from transcendent to interdependent, from today to tomorrow.”

Fun fact: I've never had a cup of coffee in my life.


Greening Move Out      

The Move Out team works to collect and donate unwanted clothes, school supplies, books, and unopened food left behind at the end of the academic year so that these items are put to use, and don’t end up in the landfill. 

Leaders

Daniel Pan '18

See bio above


Raymond Sheng '19

Raymond Sheng

Major: Electrical Engineering

Hometown: Southern California

Why I applied to be an EcoRep: I wanted to play an active role in improving sustainability at Princeton.

What sustainability means to me: Avoiding unnecessary depletion of resources.

Fun fact: I am currently designing a 'smart plug' by embedding a micro controller into a power strip to eliminate standby power for my embedded computing course.


Committee Members

Dan Sturm '19

Dan Sturm

Major: Studying to become a professional EcoRep but dabbles with electrical engineering during his free time

Hometown: Grew up within walking distance of campus

What sustainability means to me/Fun fact: Sustainability is about working with all living entities rather than using them. One such living entity, Dan believes, is his eyebrows - he can do "the wave" with them!"


Shiye Su '20

Shiye Su

Major: (prospective) Physics

Hometown: Brisbane, Australia

Why I applied to be an EcoRep: I wholeheartedly believe that sustainability is one of our most pressing global concerns, and would love to see more action and visibility regarding environmental causes on Princeton campus.

What sustainability means to me: Intelligently using natural resources so that we can preserve the environment for all people and all ecosystems into the future.

Fun fact: I love whales!


Sisi Peng '19

SiSi Peng

Major: Geosciences

Hometown: Colorado Springs, CO

Why I applied to be an EcoRep: I wanted to get more involved in sustainability on campus and to apply what I'm learning in class to campus life. 

What sustainability means to me: Sustainability, to me, is a lifestyle that entails using one's resources wisely and at rates that do not diminish said resources too quickly, so that resource stores are maintained and/or replenished over long periods of time. 

Fun fact: My spirit animal is a cat. Meow!


Daniel Tjondro '20

See bio above!


Greening Events   

The Greening Events team aims to provide a comprehensive system for the Princeton community so that it's easier for event organizers to order sustainable food and tableware, and to compost and recycle during the event.

Leaders

Amber Lin '19

See bio above!

Erin Mooz '19

See bio above!  


Greening Labs  

The Greening Labs project is focused on investigating ways to save energy and promote other sustainability practices in natural science labs. 

Leaders

Jessica Yiyi Li '18   

Jessica Li

Major: Chemistry  

Hometown: Washington, D.C. 

Why I applied to be an EcoRep: I've been a tree-hugger for a quite some time, and before I graduate from Princeton, I wish to catalyze new ideas for sustainability in my community here.

What sustainability means to me: Sustainability is the snowball effect of small steps merging into major leaps for preserving our planet. 

Fun fact: I've always been very fond of armadillos.    


Repair Lab  

Repair Lab aspires to create a clothing repair space designed to encourage sustainable attitudes and reduce textile waste on campus through teaching campus community members how to repair, reuse and upcycle clothing. 

Leaders

Maj Halaweh '19

See bio above!


Cecilia Shang '19

See bio above!


Nico Viglucci '19

Nico Viglucci

Major: Mechanical and Aerospace Engineering with an intended certificate in Sustainable Energy

Hometown: Miami, FL

Why I applied to be an EcoRep: 

I grew up on the water, so I gained an appreciation for the natural beauty of our waterways in Miami. South of the Everglades, conversations about conservation and restoration efforts were always a big part of my education in the classroom. I realized that I was passionate about protecting our environment. 

What sustainability means to me: Sustainability is living harmoniously with the environment in a steady state. We could coexist indefinitely with no damages!

Fun fact: I bought an old 40' school bus off a government auction website!


Communications   

The Communications team works to facilitate connections between the EcoReps and rest of the university. Their goal is to grow the sustainability ethos on campus by spreading awareness about various relevant issues, while encouraging students to get involved. 

Leaders

Lillian Chen '20

See bio above


Erin Redding '19

Erin Redding

Class: 2019

Major: Woodrow Wilson School

Certificate: Environmental Studies

Hometown: Modesto, CA

Why I applied to be an EcoRep: I wanted to be the sustainability-student liaison that many individuals need to take their first steps towards a greener campus, club, team, or residential college. 

What sustainability means to me: Recognizing your personal effect on the environment, and being an active bystander!

Fun fact: I used to be on a traveling jumprope team.