As soon as new, incoming students arrive on campus for Orientation, they are asked to brainstorm ideas on how they might have a positive impact on the environment. What can they do about global warming? What can they do to reduce their carbon footprint? This is the task set for BVU's entering class during Orientation.
The centerpiece of the first-year program is University Seminar, a four credit-hour class designed for incoming students. Students work with their University Seminar "team" to work on the Global Footprint Project.
Six hours are allotted during Orientation for each team to propose how the university might reduce its carbon footprint. Teams are asked to prepare a detailed action plan to implement their project, which would be funded by the university. Projects are then judged by the university's vice president, and the winners are judged by BVU president Fred Moore in the final competition.
One of the winners was the "Bottles for Beavers" project, which organized the distribution of 750 refillable stainless steel water bottles free to students, faculty, and staff as a way to discourage the use of throwaway plastic water bottles.