Letter: We Need A Cleaner Venice High

Let’s Call On Students To Contribute Towards Campus Clean-Up

Maya Velasco, Guest Writer

Dear Oarsman Editors,

I want to bring attention to and call to action the rising urgency on campus: trash. 

I am the Event Coordinator for Venice High’s chapter of Heal The Bay and President of the Garden Club. Both clubs are completely student-run, with ambitions to establish environmental awareness and action in and around our campus. We firmly believe our campus represents a new generation of activists, paving the path for how our future will unfold.

While our concerns in the past have focused primarily on the ecosystems and community impacts surrounding our school, our focus has shifted to an urgent dilemma here on campus. 

This year, it has come to me and my fellow leaders and student’s attention that there is a rise in pollution across our campus: the front lawn, cafeteria, planting plots across campus, and even the garden.

Custodian, janitorial, and student volunteer efforts are overwhelmed by the growing spread of student trash.

Where Venice High’s front campus once gleamed in green, now students, teachers, and staff stare in disbelief at the image our campus presents. 

The issue at hand may seem superficial compared to the global issues of climate change and rapidly deteriorating ecosystems.

Nonetheless, this issue should be of the utmost importance to our campus and its student body. As I mentioned earlier, we represent the change of our future; therefore it should begin here. 

We call all our students to collectively take responsibility for our recent behavior and the trace we leave behind. I call all our students to shift their focus to an issue right before them. While we are emerging global activists seeking innovative solutions to the issues outside, we must prioritize our focus on the individual and collaborative changes we can make within our own school.

 As environmental leaders of our campus, Heal The Bay has made extensive efforts to clean up around campus before and after school weekly. But this isn’t enough. Each student must take their own action to use our campus responsibly and promote a cleaner, safer, and better Venice High School. 

Signed as Senior Maya Velasco