April 10, 2024

Susquehanna University has successfully renewed its certification as an affiliate of the Bee Campus USA program, designed to marshal the strengths of educational campuses for the benefit of pollinators.

The recertification was a collaborative effort between the university’s Sustainability Office, the Freshwater Research Institute, the Facilities Management Office and the Beekeeping Club.

“Our recertification recognizes our collective efforts to support pollinators, minimize pesticide and herbicide use and increase native plants,” said Greg Severyn, sustainability coordinator and associate professor of Spanish studies at Susquehanna University.

In 2018, Susquehanna became the first university in Pennsylvania to be certified as an affiliate of Bee Campus USA. Since then, seven other colleges and universities throughout Pennsylvania have followed Susquehanna’s lead.

Bee Campus USA is an initiative of the Xerces Society for Invertebrate Conservation, a nonprofit organization based in Portland, Ore. Its mission is to galvanize communities and campuses to sustain pollinators by providing them with healthy habitat, rich in a variety of native plants and free of pesticides.

Pollinators like bumble bees, sweat bees, mason bees, honey bees, butterflies, moths, beetles, flies, hummingbirds and many others are responsible for the reproduction of 90% of the world’s wild plant species and 30% of the world’s food crops.

In support of pollinators, Susquehanna University:

  • Maintains bee hives at the Center for Environmental Education & Research.
  • Supports the student-run Beekeepers Club, which maintains the bee hives at the CEER.
  • Planted large plots of wildflowers to promote pollination.
  • Drafted an integrated pest management plan to govern the use of pesticides, herbicides and insecticides, which is already limited on campus and not used at all at the CEER.