Student inspired to improve environmental programs

By Maegan Murray, WSU Tri-Cities

Bartoshevich-80RICHLAND, Wash. – Improved campus recycling and composting programs, as well as an organic garden for students and employees, are a few of the ideas Randy Bartoshevich hopes to help implement as a new officer in the Environmental Club at Washington State University Tri-Cities.

He is inspired in these efforts after he was selected as one of 20 students nationwide to participate in a summer leadership workshop through the University Corporation for Atmospheric Research (UCAR).

“I made so many connections and learned so much about how I, myself, could use my skills and energy to make an impact in my community,” Bartoshevich said. “This year will be filled with opportunities for me to step up and use my voice to be the change I wish to see.”

WSU Tri-Cities student Randy Bartoshevich in the vineyard where he is doing research on efficient water use.

Two years ago as a student at Columbia Basin Community College, he was unsure of what studies he wanted to pursue. An instructor asked if he would be interested in applying for an internship through the National Science Foundation’s Research Experience for Undergraduates (REU) at WSU’s Laboratory for Atmospheric Research.

Bartoshevich spent that summer working on air quality, and his success led to another program this summer – conducting research on water use efficiency at a vineyard in Benton City, Wash. That resulted in his nomination by WSU for the UCAR Undergraduate Leadership Workshop.

“The workshop included seminars on diversity in leadership, leadership development and how to communicate the sciences to the general public – something most scientists struggle with,” Bartoshevich said. “It was an incredible experience. I was on a high for weeks after I got back.”

Feeling empowered and ready to take on new responsibilities at WSU Tri-Cities, he took on an officer role in the Environmental Club and formed a Holistic Health Club. It includes yoga, nutrition advice and cultural opportunities for students to bond with one another.

Bartoshevich said he hopes to continue his vineyard research as well as help lead the Environmental Club, whose primary goal is to bring a sustainable and healthy attitude to the student body.