Sustainable Spartans

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Here at ing Magazine, we are interested in looking at sustainability in everyday life. We wanted to know: “What does it really mean to live sustainably?”

Living sustainably can mean being as extreme as participating in a waste free lifestyle or simply changing your methods of transportation, consumption or diet. 

Sustainable Spartans

Michigan State University’s campus has been working toward a more a sustainable infrastructure with the university-wide engagement campaign: Be Spartan Green. Additionally, students are taking their own strides toward a more mindful use of the Earth’s resources. 

Marissa Saldivia, junior Spanish and communications major, has been a vegan for almost two years. “Being vegan has added such a greater purpose to my life as well as making me healthier and happier,” she said.

On top of going vegan, she’s recently decided to stop using plastic bags at the grocery store. “I’ve been bringing my own bags, which is decreasing my [carbon] footprint on this earth,” said Saldivia. 

Another Spartan, sophomore interior design major and beauty enthusiast Emily Marquette, has been leaning toward vegan and cruelty free makeup products rather than her usual favorites. “Many countries that produce these products are required by law to test on animals before people, and that really disappoints me,” she said. 

On top of using vegan and cruelty free products, Marquette has also been working toward not wasting products and has been actively trying to “hit the pan,” a phrase used by conscious beauty enthusiasts that simply means using all of a product before purchasing different or newer versions. 

Small steps toward sustainability

Taking steps toward a greener, more sustainable lifestyle doesn’t require a complete overhaul. There are plenty of easy day-to-day changes you can make such as: 

  • Eating less animal by-products (meat, dairy)
  • Walking or taking public transportation to work/class 
  • Swapping out beauty and home products for cruelty free/vegan products
  • Recycling whenever possible 

All of these things can decrease our carbon footprint and can have a lasting effect on our world. While MSU and the Be Spartan Green campaign are taking strides to be more sustainable, it’s also on us, as individuals, to work to keep our planet as green as possible. As Marquette pointed out, “these things sound really small, but starting with yourself is the key to making a lasting impact on our one and only Earth.” 

To learn more about sustainability at MSU, follow @bespartangreen on Twitter/Instagram and check out their website


Hannah Bullion is a junior professional writing major with an interest in all things new media. She hopes to flee the Midwest and pursue a career in fashion in New York City. She is also the social media director for MSU’s fashion and lifestyle publication, VIM Magazine, and an intern for the College of Arts & Letters. Keep up with her on Twitter (@hannahmbullion) and Instagram (@hannahbullion).