Lynn University today announced its official designation as a Fair Trade University. Lynn students, with oversight from the university’s new Social Impact Lab, spearheaded completion of the requirements in less than three months—the fastest of any designated institution in program history.
“Purchasing Fair Trade products and supporting fair working conditions should be the norm at universities nationwide,” said senior Gabby Monahan, who led the application process alongside peer Megan Selfridge. “This initiative will help our campus continue to move towards a better, greener and more sustainable future.”
Fair Trade is an economic system that assures the products consumers buy are grown, harvested, crafted and traded in ways that improve lives and protect the environment. As part of a national initiative, Fair Trade Campaigns officially recognizes U.S. schools that are committed to educating students about the issues of Fair Trade and sourcing Fair Trade products.
“Few things are more exciting than seeing today’s youth understand the role that they can play as consumers in making the world a fairer and just place,” said Billy Linstead Goldsmith, director of Fair Trade Campaigns. “To see them become not just conscious consumers, but advocates for Fair Trade, should challenge all of us to do the same.”
Lynn met five essential requirements, which included making Fair Trade products available on campus and passing a Fair Trade resolution.
“While most campuses have difficulty meeting each of the Fair Trade requirements, Lynn was a step ahead, given that Sodexo has been sourcing Fair Trade products,” said Selfridge about Lynn’s dining partner. “The added support of the Lynn community was paramount to our success and the swift nature in which we were able to achieve this esteemed designation.”
Deepening the school’s commitment to its new designation, Lynn will serve Fair Trade Vega Coffee on campus in fall 2018. Rigoberto Beltran ’17, founded Lynn’s relationship with the Nicaraguan company when he interned with the organization as part of the Ambassador Corps.
Lynn is the second university in Florida and the 48th in the nation to earn the Fair Trade University distinction.