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Clarkson featured in article on greening of commencement


POTSDAM - Christina Lesyk, director of university events at Clarkson University, has been featured in an American School & University magazine article on “The Greening of Commencement.” The article was a follow-up to Lesyk’s presentation on sustainable commencements at the annual conference of the North American Association of Commencement Officers in Washington, D.C., in February.

“We started off like a lot of other institutions by greening the regalia after we came across information about biodegradable graduation gowns a few years ago,” according to Lesyk in the article. “It kind of snowballed from there as we thought, ‘Okay, what else can we do?’”

Eco-friendly graduation ceremonies are not only environmentally intelligent, but can be cost-efficient. “Our primary concern is to continue to produce a quality product. Through sustainable practices, we can take what most colleges and universities consider to be their most important annual event and add value to it without sacrificing quality. Sustainable practices don’t necessarily make the ceremonies any more expensive,” continues Lesyk.

The greening of graduation is still a relatively new trend, but a growing number of institutions of higher learning are making a greater effort to integrate environmentally intelligent practices and products into their graduation events.

The full article is at

Since 1928, American School & University ( has been the information source for education facilities and business professionals, serving the nation’s K-12 and higher-education administrators responsible for the planning, design, construction, retrofit, operations, maintenance and management of education facilities. AS&U’s mission is to serve as the voice of the industry, helping to shape the rapidly growing and evolving education facilities and business market.

Lesyk has worked at Clarkson since 2005 and has been director of university events since 2009. She received designation as a Certified Special Events Professional (CSEP) by the International Special Events Society in January. This spring, she was nominated as a New York State Senate Woman of Distinction for the 47th Senate District, which encompasses Oneida, Lewis and St. Lawrence counties.

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