Earth Day Assembly Features Student Leaders

"The greatest threat to our earth is the belief that someone else will save it." When Robert Swan, the first person to make unassisted forays to both poles, made this remark, he had already established himself as one of the great advocates of environmental health and awareness.

Embodying Swan's sentiment, the Lower Campus student body president, Bryson O'Malley Scholz '29, hatched a plan two months ago for the Earth Day Assembly (April 22, 2022), taking inspiring steps to inform our community about environmentalism.

Bryson reached out to Mr. Horwitz, Dean of Students, requesting to compose a Powerpoint (PPT) with the option of presenting it to Lower School students on Earth Day. Bryson created the PPT, dedicating long hours to the necessary research, review, editing, and fine-tuning necessary for a meaningful production. And, understanding the importance and power of inclusivity, he brought together a team to make edits and help stage and exhibit. 

Bryson and his team, consisting of Chidi Odebunmi '29, Maria Moses '28, Arhaan Kapoor '28, and Leo Wiener '28, focused their presentation on informing students about climate change and its challenging effects on our planet. Instilling the students with a sense of hope and action, they then amplified numerous ways in which people are helping the environment and all the possibilities in which Sierra Canyon and our young students can make a positive impact each day. 

Bryson and his team then gave the floor to the Green Team, led by Mr. Johnson and Mrs. Lucid, who had already shared an informational slideshow with all homerooms during the week on how to conduct a no-waste lunch. To better prepare students for the no-waste lunch later that day, The Green Team brought a series of items before the Lower Campus audience at the assembly, asking them to help determine what could be considered healthy for the environment, like reusable flatware or food containers, and compostable materials.

Among the no-waste materials were phade straws, an ingenious product that looks and feels like a plastic straw but is created from organic materials. SC parent and board member Mr. Cyrus Nikou (Zayn' 34) made a generous donation of these straws to enhance the assembly's message while providing fun prizes for those students who participated in the presentation and zero-waste interactive presentation. A time-lapse video of one of the phade straws disappearing in a marine environment drove home the idea that there are great and powerful alternatives to non-compostable single-use waste materials. These straws demonstrated that entrepreneurship and ingenuity can lead to better choices mutually beneficial to all. Students intend to take action and petition local businesses to try out and adopt these straws as viable options for the plastic variety. 

The assembly was equal parts information and inspiration as a profound sense of optimism pervaded the amphitheater with the notion that students are empowered to be change agents and act on behalf of our planet and all who inhabit it. And akin to Robert Swan's call-to-action, Bryson, his crew, the Green Team, Mr. Nikou, and our Sierra Canyon community demonstrated that it is up to each one of us to be great stewards of our environment.
Lower School: 11052 Independence Avenue
Middle and Upper School: 20801 Rinaldi Street
Chatsworth, CA 91311  | 818.882.8121
Sierra Canyon School is a private, independent, non-sectarian, co-educational, college preparatory school for students in grades Pre-Kindergarten through 12 located in Chatsworth, California. The highly cosmopolitan campus community is reflective of the Greater Los Angeles area and the world at large. Students are empowered to realize their greatest creative, ethical, intellectual and physical promise through small class sizes, a diverse student-teacher culture and a family-like environment.