One man’s trash may be another man’s treasure, but when said object is littering the ground, it tends to fall into the former category. Pepperdine students can make a difference on campus by discarding any trash that they see. Students should be intentional about keeping campus clean, as well as appreciating those who do so for a living.
Being a good steward on campus is a simple way that Pepperdine students can improve and save lives. By simply picking up one piece of trash a day, students can have an enormous impact on Pepperdine’s environment. With thousands of undergraduate and graduate students frequenting campus nearly every day, the numbers can add up quickly.
Along with being unsightly, trash can cause a lot of damage. With Pepperdine’s proximity to the ocean, it is even more critical that trash is properly handled.
Plastic has a hazardous tendency to end up in the ocean, ultimately killing wildlife, according to Donna Lawrence’s article “10 Reasons to Pick Up 10 Pieces of Trash,” published by the Plastic Pollution Coalition on Aug. 19, 2016. Neglecting cleanliness can have fatal consequences.
Cleaning up after oneself and others is a way that students can show respect for their surroundings. In fact, being a good steward of one’s institution is correlated to a greater sense of pride and appreciation, according to Owen Phillips’ article “Without Janitors, Students Are In Charge Of Keeping School Shipshape,” published April 4, 2015 by NPR.
Cleanliness is a mark of character. When students are neglectful and trash the space that they’re in, it is actually symptomatic of a subtle sense of entitlement, according to David William’s article “How to Overcome the ‘Entitlement Trap’ in Business,” published Aug. 13, 2017 by Forbes.
A way that Pepperdine students can take this spirit of stewardship to the next level is by showing gratitude toward those who are employed to maintain campus. Maintenance workers commonly “go above and beyond the call of duty in unseen ways,” according to Chuck Fieldman’s article “Custodians Other Role: ‘Unsung Heroes’ In Schools,” published Nov. 5, 2015 by the Chicago Tribune.
It is no stretch to say that Pepperdine’s maintenance staff embodies the university’s commitment to living lives of service. Students should voice their gratitude. After all, these are the people who make campus habitable. In the words of G.B. Stern, “Silent gratitude isn’t much use to anyone.”
A clean campus is something to take pride in. Students should make an effort to ensure that their stunning environment is not defiled by trash, whether it belongs to them or not. Additionally, students should be generous with the gratitude that they show maintenance staff. These measures will make Pepperdine an even more welcoming place.
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