Students take the CATA buses to and from classes pretty much every day, and that’s why the group Sustainable Spartans want to make getting from place to place a little safer.
With the help from a $25,000 grant from Ford Motor Company, they want to put in solar lights at 10 to 12 bus stops across campus in addition to the one already in East Neighborhood.
“If we can bring together safety and sustainability at the same time, then we knew it was something that MSU would definitely want to be a part of,” said Sustainable Spartans’ president Alexa Marsh.
The Ford Motor Company Fund grant is geared toward helping educational nonprofits work toward sustainable energy goals that they want to accomplish.
Marsh said Sustainable Spartans were a little late in applying for the grant itself last spring, but it was worth it.
“The president at the time showed us this grant and she was like ‘we only have like 24 hours to turn it in, but I really think we should try it out’,” said Marsh. “It happened super quick and unexpectedly, but I’m so happy it did.”
CATA‘s CEO Bradley Funkhouser thinks this is a great way to connect to the MSU community, especially with students leading this project.
“They will be the leaders of tomorrow and so to be able to come up with solutions that make sense for them, I’m always open to,” said Funkhouser. “I’m very, very excited about what the future holds especially on campus with this project.”
The next steps for the group include ordering and installing the lights. The first test light will be installed at the Wells Hall stop.
“It’s just a few lights around campus but what we are hoping is that it brings awareness to sustainable energy and that it’s possible even on these small scales and it does matter on these small scales.” said Marsh.