Student Sustainability Clubs
Cornell has over 40+ clubs for students at all levels related to sustainability. Build a solar-powered car, become a compost leader, or help advance climate justice in our community. No matter what your passion - you can find it here.
The Cornell Sustainability Consultants (CSC) is a multi-disciplinary student group working to improve sustainability in local organizations by providing best practices through industry-specific research. CSC envisions a strong, circular-based economy characterized by closed resource loops and resilient communities. CSC, unlike other consulting clubs, addresses local sustainability challenges and is primarily concerned with project implementation.
Epsilon Eta is a new professional honors fraternity at Cornell University for young individuals who seek post-graduate positions in fields involving sustainability. Epsilon Eta Cornell is the tenth of its kind in the nation, and is the first fraternity at Cornell focused on sustainability. Epsilon Eta seeks to bridge the gap between environmentalism and professional or business fields. In this process, they strive to foster a conscious awareness of the intrinsic relationship between people and their environment through professional development, the community, and service.
Engineers for a Sustainable World (ESW) is an engineering project team committed to forge innovative, lasting solutions to local and global sustainability challenges. Since its establishment in 2002 at Cornell, ESW has expanded to a national, non-profit network with over 50 college, university and city chapters, and more than 4000 student, faculty and professional members. ESW Cornell is comprised of three subteams: Solar Powered Solutions, Renewable Energy Design and Biofuels.
The Environmental Law Society (ELS) is an independent student organization at Cornell Law School. The Environmental Law Society works to increase environmental law curriculum and scholarship. Through an executive board and four all-volunteer committees comprised of current law students, ELS provides sustainability initiatives, environmental law programming, community service, and outreach. ELS is open to graduate and professional students at Cornell.
Cornell Herpetological Society (CHS) consists of student, faculty, and local herpetologists interested in reptile and amphibian research and education. CHS provides a forum for the informal exchange of herpetological knowledge and information, and serves as a tool to cultivate these interests among the community by acting as an educational vehicle to the community at large. Meetings consist of guest speakers, outreach events, field surveys, and trips, and everyone is welcome.
Hortus Forum is Cornell’s undergraduate horticulture club. Hortus Forum grows a variety of plants in the greenhouses at Kenneth Post Labs, and hosts plant sales to fund learning opportunities and trips for members. Hortus Forum aims to cultivate a positive social community that fosters a passion for plants and teaches the value of horticulture. Members gain experience through hands-on activities in greenhouse production, marketing, outdoor plants and current trends in the plant science world.
Mayor Potencial at Cornell raises awareness about the challenges in the rural village of El Rodeito, Honduras, where 80% of the population live in extreme poverty and do not have access to clean water. Members travel to El Rodeito during Winter Break, Spring Break, and throughout the summer. Mayor Potencial is currently raising $15,000 to build a high school in this village. During trips, members work on nutritional research, serve as business consults for the family businesses, teach English in the elementary school, agricultural research, healthcare research, and more.
The Cornell Roosevelt Institute is a student-run think tank that promotes progressive thought and engages students to generate policy ideas. Members write policy proposals for publication and complete policy advocacy and educational projects. Each semester, members compile a journal of policy proposals. Policy topics include education, economy, environment, healthcare, domestic, science & tech, and foreign.
Snodgrass and Wigglesworth (SnodWiggs) exists in affiliation with the Cornell Department of Entomology to promote the study and appreciation of arthropod organisms both within the Cornell campus community and the greater Ithaca area. SnodWiggs is open to all majors, and anyone with an interest in insects is welcome to join. Typical meetings include going on field trips on and off campus, hosting invited speakers, and sharing members’ latest bug adventures!
Sustainable Business Alliance (SBA) is an organization that works to transform strong business students into leaders in the emerging fields of corporate sustainability and sustainable finance. SBA employs lectures, guest speakers, company tours, and more, to provide students with the tools necessary to be sustainable business leaders.
The Sustainable Enterprise Association (SEA) brings together undergraduate Cornell students interested in understanding how innovation and entrepreneurship form the core of a sustainable global enterprise. SEA inspires, enables, and supports students from all disciplines to explore the theories and applications of sustainable enterprise through discussion groups, business planning, consulting projects, lecturers, internships, and conferences. SEA also provides hands-on opportunities for students who want to be socially responsible members of their communities.
The Sustainable Global Enterprise (SGE) Club, Cornell’s Chapter of Net Impact, is a professional club that offers networking opportunities with students and alumni, career assistance, and events aimed at improving understanding of sustainability concepts in modern business. SGE Club’s education and networking support spans many areas including impact investing, renewable energy, environmental finance, sustainable hospitality, sustainable marketing, and sustainable agriculture in primarily for-profit business models.
The club is open to all Johnson students regardless of immersion or functional interest.
Cornell Beekeeping Club is a group that is dedicated to teaching the art of beekeeping and learning about bees. Beekeeping Club has about eight hives located at Dilmun Hill Student Farm, and is open to students, faculty, staff, and community members. Past events have included hive inspections, soap making, frame-building, candle-making, honey extraction, and visiting local apiaries and workshops.
Climate Justice Cornell (CJC) is a horizontally structured student-run organization that was formed in response to the United States’ rejection of the Kyoto Protocol in 2001. CJC organizes student-run campaigns to promote a sustainable, just future and advance policy on climate change at university, local, and national levels. CJC has been instrumental in establishing and maintaining Cornell’s commitment to campus carbon neutrality, and holds panels and teach-ins to educate students about local environmental justice issues.
Cornell Environmental Collaborative (ECO) was founded in December 2014 in response to a call from leaders across campus for a stronger student alliance towards campus carbon neutrality. ECO is a collaborative organization that connects and works with over 40 sustainability oriented organizations on campus to promote sustainable thinking, foster new ideas, and invoke environmental awareness in students across campus.
The Residential Sustainability Leaders (RSLs) is a student organization whose primary goal is to create a culture of sustainability within Cornell’s residential communities. We do this by identifying sustainability concerns and needs on campus and then creating solutions! Some of our existing successes include: creating the Green Room Certification program, collecting survey data and advising Cornell Dining how to best increase reusable to-go container use, and managing Terracycling in residence halls. On all of these projects, we work closely with the Campus Sustainability Office, Housing & Residential Life, and multiple other departments to identify issues, foster sustainable behaviors, and implement real solutions to advance environmentalism within Cornell.
Cornell University Sustainable Design (CUSD) is a student run, interdisciplinary project team in Systems Engineering with a bias towards impact. CUSD brings together students from across all seven colleges to work alongside renowned faculty and knowledgeable professionals to create a network of proactively sustainable communities. CUSD’s sustainability projects promote ecological, social, and economic sustainability to achieve innovative and resilient structures, both locally and abroad.
The Johnson Energy Club is comprised of highly motivated students who are passionate about making an impact in the energy industry. The interests of its members span both renewable and traditional energy, and are spread across various functional areas including but not limited to: sales & trading, managerial finance, consulting, investment banking, marketing, and entrepreneurship. Johnson Energy Club presents students with a variety of opportunities year round to engage in the energy world and its myriad possibilities.
Green Club, a Cornell startup, aims to make fighting climate change more accessible and affordable for Cornell students. To join, students pay a subscription fee that goes towards reducing 1 ton of CO2 emissions per month. Members receive benefits to help them live more sustainably, such as free TCAT rides and discounts for reusable water bottles/straws.
Anabel's Grocery is a student-led initiative to operate a grocery store on Cornell's campus that addresses food insecurity by providing students access to healthy and affordable food. Anabel's Grocery also works to increase food literacy at Cornell through their partner organization, Anabel's Programming. After two years of careful prep and planning, including a construction process executed entirely by students, Anabel's Grocery officially opened its doors in May 2017 and is proud to have served over 2,000 unique customers.
Learn more: Anabel's Grocery
Cornell hydroponics club uses modern farming techniques to grow sustainable, nutritious food with fewer resources. We prioritize student growth and learning in this up-and-coming field by organizing several projects relating to food production, research, and hands-on hydroponic practices.
The Cornell Vegan Society (CVS) strives to bring the connection between diet and ethics, health, and the environment into public consciousness. CVS welcomes all members regardless of diet or lifestyle, and holds social, advocacy, and educational events throughout the year. Through community outreach and volunteer work, CVS strives to implement positive and sustainable change at Cornell and beyond.
Dilmun Hill Student Farm is a student-run farm that has been practicing sustainable agriculture on the Cornell campus for more than a decade, fostering community and empowering students through engagement in eco-friendly agriculture. Dilmun Hill hosts work parties where volunteers can work and experience sustainable agriculture practices, and offers organic fruits and vegetables to the campus at their farm stand. Dilmun Hill provides seasonal produce to the campus dining facilities as well as offering a Summer and Fall CSA Program.
The Farmers’ Market at Cornell (FM@C) is a student group whose mission is to organize and plan a weekly Farmers' market on Cornell's campus that allows for students, faculty, staff and the local community to come together to purchase and enjoy local goods and products. FM@C is working to bridge the Ithaca community and Cornell, while building a greater appreciation for food that is fresh and locally sourced.
Cornell’s chapter of the Food Recovery Network (FRN) reduces dining food waste and at the same time tackles the community's hunger by donating surplus meals from Cornell's dining halls to local food pantries. Rather than ending up in the compost, Cornell's extra food now finds itself where it's most at home-- in the hands of the hungry. Surplus meals from the dining hall are donated to the Friendship Donation Network, where they are redistributed to pantries all over the county.
AguaClara is an engineering project team at Cornell that develops sustainable water and wastewater treatment technologies. AguaClara Cornell pioneers research in community-scale water treatment technologies and has partnered with AguaClara Reach and other local organizations to build fourteen AguaClara plants that provide safe water on tap to over 65,000 people.
Cornell Ecotourism Club (CEC) was founded to increase the relevance and impact of Ecotourism and to create a community to lead the development of the industry world wide. CEC provides a platform for travelers and members of the Cornell community to learn about the principles of the industry, expand their network, and connect with potential employers and industry professionals. CEC’s 2018 summer internship program sent students to lodges in Peru, Nicaragua, and Costa Rica.
The Cornell Nature Society seeks to conserve and enrich the natural environment through community-based projects. These projects range from working with animals, construction and building of natural enclosures, education, community service, and other activities that encourage members to explore the environment around Cornell. Cornell Nature Society promotes environmental awareness, strives to take action on issues that concern our global society, and continuously shares the importance of sustaining our environment for future generations through their projects.
Friends of the Gorge is a student organization that works to promote recreation, environmental stewardship and safety around Cornell's gorge areas. Students in the organization actively work to develop and implement recommendations and solutions to address a wide range of interrelated issues around the gorges which include: trail safety, maintenance, and repairs, litter and illegal trash dumping, risk of swimming in the gorges, and access to and appropriate use of these important recreational resources for the Cornell and Ithaca communities.
Nature Rx @ Cornell is an initiative that aims to get students out in nature to reduce stress and improve health at Cornell. Multiple studies have concluded that spending even a few hours each week in nature can improve mood, cognitive ability, alertness, ability to concentrate, social connection, and overall sense of well-being. Nature Rx aims to connect students with the beautiful and diverse area that Cornell is surrounded by such as Beebe Lake, Cascadilla Gorge, F.R. Newman Arboretum, and Cornell Botanic Gardens.
Outdoor Odyssey is a pre-orientation program hosted by Cornell Outdoor Education that empowers individuals through outdoors experience, appreciation, and education. Outdoor Odyssey aims to provide incoming Cornell students with pre-orientation trips that serve as a fun and meaningful transition to life at Cornell. Trips range from backpacking to rock climbing to canoeing, and no experience is necessary to participate.
The Society for Natural Resources Conservation (SNRC) is a student-run organization that is dedicated to encouraging community environmental and resource conservation through the implementation of educational events and programs. SNRC initiated and is expanding TerraCycle collection bin locations across campus, hosts Fall Creek Gorge Stewardship events, promotes the use of reusable mugs through a social-media photo campaign, organizes an annual zero-waste Earth Day 5K to demonstrate sustainable living practices, raises awareness for environmental issues, and supports local conservation groups, and instituted a fee for plastic bags at the Cornell Store. SNRC collaborates with a diverse group of organizations to make the broadest and strongest impact possible.
The American Society of Landscape Architects (ASLA) is the professional association for landscape architects in the United States. The ASLA’s mission is to advance landscape architecture through advocacy, communication, education, and fellowship. Sustainability has been part of ASLA’s mission since its founding and is an overarching value that informs all of the Society’s programs and operations. ASLA has been a leader in demonstrating the benefits of green infrastructure and resilient development practices through the creation of its own green roof, co-development of the SITES® Rating System, and the creation of publicly-accessible sustainable design resources.
The Cornell Computer Reuse Association (CCRA) is a student organization at Cornell University dedicated to donating computers and other computer related technology to humanitarian organizations in the developing world and in the local Ithaca community. CCRA members collect and refurbish used computers and donate them to community centers, orphanages, schools and other organizations in the United States and developing countries. CCRA has donated over 3,000 computers to places as far away as Nicaragua, Zambia, Jamaica, South Africa, Mali, Togo, Kenya, the Bahamas, Liberia, and as near as Brooklyn and Ithaca.
Cornell Thrift is a student organization with a mission to reduce campus-wide waste through redistribution of reusable personal items such as clothing, homeware, electronics, and small furniture. Cornell Thrift has opened Ezra’s Exchange, an on-campus closet space where students can donate clothes and find new ones for free, so that students can have a way to “thrift” on campus all year round. Cornell Thrift also hosts mending workshops, pop-up events, and has resources online for students to reduce their own waste on campus.
WasteNot is a completely student-initiated and driven project to redesign Cornell University's campus waste system. WasteNot aims to reduce post-consumer waste contamination, prevent diversion to landfill, and ultimately reduce the amount of products entering the waste stream in the first place. WasteNot is redesigning bin signage and product labeling for campus-wide consistency, clarity, and uniformity. WasteNot’s ultimate purpose is to design creative community-focused solutions to incentivize consumers to reuse.
"How can I compost at my event?"
"How can I compost at my apartment?"
"WHAT IS COMPOST?"
Cornell Compost is here to help you with any and all composting questions. They are a student run organization working to make composting more accessible at Cornell University. They can educate your group about composting at Cornell, can provide resources for composting at your event, and can organize large-scale event composting. Cornell Compost also works closely with the Cornell Campus Sustainability Office, assisting with the Residential Compost Managers Program.
Birding Club at Cornell is a group for students who enjoy birding and ornithology. Birding Club provides opportunities such as birding field trips, faculty lectures, and social events and is open to anyone interested in birds.
Cornell Outing Club (COC) aims to offer an environment where members can learn and develop outdoor skills and gain leadership experience while enjoying outdoor activities with friends.
COC offers students the chance to develop outdoors skills, leadership experience, and form lifetime bonds, all in an environment of mutual help and assistance. Membership is only $7 per semester for undergraduate students ($10 per semester for others), and members gain access to COC’s field trips and large collection of gear. COC is open to anyone looking to learn a new activity, develop their skills, or meet others who share a passion for outdoor adventure.
Cornell Hammock Enthusiasts’ Club is a recreational club to bring together students who enjoy spending time in hammocks or want to try it. The club provide an opportunity for students to balance their studies with leisure time and enjoy the outdoors during the warmer months in Ithaca. All members will have the opportunity to learn how to assemble, care for, and disassemble hammocks. The club hosts “hammock hangouts” with hammocks available on campus for students to use and will raise funds and awareness for the prevention of deforestation.