Tag Archives: sustainability

Island School’s New Eco-Friendly Uniform: A Human Ecology Project

Ryan Schendel and Jake Varsano (F'12) put the Recover Brand t-shirts to the test by wearing them during morning exercise.
Ryan Schendel and Jake Varsano (F’12) put Recover Brand t-shirts to the test by wearing them during morning exercise.

When we unveiled our updated Island School logo last fall, we also got to work on updating the Island School uniform to match. In fact, it was two Island School alumni who really got the ball rolling. During their Fall 2012 semester, Ryan Schendel and Jake Varsano decided to take on this daunting task as their Human Ecology final project. Determined to not only live, but also wear, The Island School’s mission to live well in a place, they began to contact vendors and test products. By the end of the Fall 2012 semester, they finally found their match in Recover Brands, a small eco-clothing start-up based out of Asheville, North Carolina that shares our same devotion to conserving the environment. We are excited to announce our partnership with Recover Brands, and introduce their products, made from 100% recycled apparel. We also continue to be proud of our students’ efforts to be leaders effecting change, especially once they leave The Island School.

“Jake and I saw an opportunity to apply the sustainability factor of The Island School campus to the clothing we wear – this was a chance to take responsibility of the origins of our uniforms and campus clothes and recognize the impact our clothes had on the environment. I think the project was and will continue to be successful because now Island School students can be proud of the clothes they wear every day because they know the story, know their environmental footprint, and see a continuation of the campus sustainability from the moment they put their shirt on.

As for me, I know after I got my Recover IS shirt, it reminded me of our sustainable campus. Every time I put it on at home, I remember how it’s different from my other shirts, and it reminds me of Island School’s sustainability. I think it’s important in the future for IS students to learn about Recover and their clothing, just like when we got a campus tour of our sustainable systems. This way, their IS clothing can have an impact, just like it does for me.” –Ryan Schendel F’12

“I am proud to say this new clothing brings The Island School another step closer to its mission of sustainability. I hope our project inspires future students to aim their projects towards something they feel passionate about and are confident will help improve our campus, allowing it to be the best model of sustainability possible. I would also like to note the efforts that were put in on campus by all who helped once Ryan and I went home. To quote Maxey, ‘It is not about the guy with the idea, it is about the guy who recognizes the idea and helps run with it.’ Well, something like that. It is time that we started wearing our mission!” –Jake Varsano F’12

If your wardrobe needs updating, or your old Island School t-shirt needs replacing, visit the new online store: http://www.recoverbrands.com/store/category/the-island-school.

Camden Hills, Day 3

Hello Y’all,
The Island School is an incredible place. We are all enjoying every moment we experience together and we’re really becoming a family.  It was our third full day in the Bahamas and the sunburns are kicking in, as well as the chafing. The bugs have attacked most of us… but that’s the lesson of this whole trip: to face the challenges that are thrown at us and embrace the lessons we learn from them. Continue reading

It is official, Gobies clean brood stock cobia!

What an exciting Monday morning for aquaculture! We now have 3 goby breeding pairs that have all laid eggs this week. Our most recent pair needed to be separated from the two other resident gobies, so we decided to experiment. It has been relayed by word of mouth that gobies will clean parasites off the cobia. Nothing is ever that easy at CEI, so we needed to see it to believe it.

Nine thirty this morning, Marie and I decided to take the leap of faith and place the 2 gobies into the brood stock cobia tank. No one knew what to expect. Would the gobies like their new home? Would the cobia know to stay still so the gobies could clean them? How long would it take until we would observe the gobies actually cleaning the cobia?

Continue reading

Congratulations…it’s a cobia!

Augie and Lea checking out the gobies

by: Team Acult Research- Augie Cummings and Lea Luniewicz

Gian Paul happily transfers baby cobia


Although we were down 3 scientist, Lea and Augie continued the research on the almighty sharknose goby. Earlier in the week we were on track to dive the cage, but despite Tyler’s heroic effort to save the day, we were without a boat. We recently received a small batch of 400,000  cobia eggs and spent all of Friday’s class separating out 8,500 cobia into a different tank.

The gobies are living it up in the pairing tank while some of those sly sharknoses have found their mates, and have moved on to better, more private real estate. They all seem to be getting to know each other better and some on more levels than others. All the color of the gobies have seemingly returned so physically they are looking pretty too. We believe that the guys indoors have been doing better because of the much more pleasurable environment. Until next time, stay classy South Eleuthera!

Exciting new additions to the farm

The much anticipated birth of 9 bouncing baby piglets happened this past Monday.  The event created quite a stir, as folks around campus organized a pool that included date of birth and number of piglets.  (The parameters were controversial, as it took considerable negotiating to work through the issue of live births vs. surviving piglets).  But in the end, Spencer and Annie split for the correct date, and Tiffany, Alex, and Noel all predicted the correct number of live births.  As master of all things farm and livestock on campus, Joseph was disappointed with his miscalculations.  But he vowed, with a sunny optimism only Joseph can muster, not to be outdone next time!

Building a Living Roof

Students band together with faculty and facilities crew to get soil onto living roof of the new bike shed

Yesterday afternoon, students assisted faculty and our facilities crew in getting the living roof on the Ryan E. Devos Bike Center. Though it was their exploration time, several students stopped by the building to help us get the soil up onto the roof.  Students shoveled soil, Continue reading