Due to a resolution recently passed by the Student Government Association, St. Mary’s College of Maryland will soon implement a “Meatless Mondays” pilot program. The program will begin Feb. 4 and will run for eight weeks. When the eight-week trial period is over, the SGA will assess the effectiveness of the program as well as student responses before deciding whether to continue the program.
The resolution to implement Meatless Mondays was unanimously passed by the St. Mary’s College SGA in early December after months of inter-campus debate. According to the resolution, the concept of Meatless Mondays upholds the college’s mission to be environmentally sustainable by decreasing its dependence on factory farming. The eight-week long trial program will cease the serving of meat, with the exception of deli meats, in the Great Room (the college’s main dining hall) on Mondays. Meat options will continue to be available at other campus eateries, including the Grab-n-Go and the Upper Deck.
The concept of Meatless Mondays has been gaining nationwide appeal since the launch of the Meatless Mondays campaign in 2003, led by health advocate Sid Lerner and the Johns Hopkins Bloomberg School of Public Health Center for a Livable Future. Colleges, universities, and public school systems have adopted the program.
“By cutting our meat purchases and consumption, students are demonstrating the willingness to make a small but meaningful change to green our food supply,” said SGA president and senior, Andrew Reighart. “The world is increasingly facing the realization that patterns of consumption must change in order to deliver a livable future to successive generations. St. Mary’s College of Maryland’s students, in supporting this reform, are taking a clear stance in support of that goal.”
St. Mary’s College president, Joseph R. Urgo, has been supportive of student self-governance. In regards to Meatless Mondays at St. Mary’s, Urgo stated: “It’s smart to be smart about what we put into our bodies. I am pleased to know that we are encouraged to be thoughtful and to include what happens at meal time as within the realm of our mission as an honors college.”