By Avery Owens |
Baylor grad, Smith Getterman, now works for his alma-mater as Baylor’s Director of Sustainability and Special Projects. He is an advocate for God’s creation and his passion lies in being a good steward of Earth’s resources.
We sat down with Getterman to learn more about what initiatives Baylor is taking to save the planet. With one scroll through the news, one can see that sustainability is a hot topic. Sustainability is a core issue of our time, as it should be. Genesis 2:15 states, “The Lord God took the man and put him in the garden of Eden to work it and keep it.” God commanded the first man to care for the Earth and to look after His creation. Christianity is at the core of Baylor’s beliefs, therefore it is important for our campus to set an example for other universities to follow.
In our interview with him, Getterman explained what his office does. His experience and knowledge makes him the ideal candidate for The Bundle’s second article in our sustainability series.
- What is your official title and job description? How many years have you had this role?
I am the Director of Sustainability and Special Projects at Baylor University. I help guide the mission of being a good steward of God’s creation. I am in my eleventh year.
2. What are the goals of the Department of Sustainability?
We want to help Baylor University be good stewards of our resources while also producing students, faculty, staff, and alumni that have a better understanding of how caring for God’s creation intercepts with the Gospel mission.
3. What has the department accomplished?
I don’t think any of our initiatives are noteworthy because they are what we should be doing. What is noteworthy is what we have accomplished through our students and larger community of Baylor Bears. We now have students who come to our school and hear for the first time in their lives that they should care about God’s creation.
They are taking what they learn and planting that seed where they put down roots. The fact that we are able to send people away from campus with a new framework and a new view of faith means more to me and this university than any projects or initiative. That ultimately affects how we will make an impact and how we will make the world a better place.
4. What are ways students can get involved?
We’ve got a student advisory board that they can apply to be on, but beyond that just doing small things while they’re on campus: recycling, riding a bike/walking to class, etc.
5. Is there one particular moment of your life that made you passionate about the field?
Whenever I made a connection of loving our neighbor is inherently connected to how we consume and what we consume, and how we steward the resources God has given us. We can’t do one without the other.
6. Are there any resources you recommend to students who want to learn more?
You would be shocked at the number of students who don’t pay attention to the news. If we can just get students to pay attention to that, that would change the way they view the world.
If you are hesitant about climate change, I encourage you to watch something like “Planet Earth” and try to not be inspired and try not to have your breath taken away by God’s artistry– just the thought that went into the diversity of His creation and how the system works together. If you can watch something like that and still don’t care about these things, you are beyond my help.
7. What is one piece of advice you could give readers who want to make a difference?
I think it would be, go back and read Genesis 1 and then try to tell me you don’t care.