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Author: Rey Sadoff


Spring, Finally: Rey Sadoff ‘26 at Antioch College in Yellow Springs, Ohio

May 22, 2023

In your first term as an Antioch student, you will almost certainly hear warnings of winter. Professors tell you how dark, cold, and long Ohio winters can be; upperclassmen warn of the icy, miserable months to come. As a brand new college student, wide eyed and perfectly comfortable with the sun beating down on you in the early fall weather, it’s hard to believe the ominous forecast. Believe it or not though, it’s true. The frigid January winds are somehow oppressive, no matter how many layers you pile on. Week after week, month after month, you open the blinds, only to find snow again… and again. But then one day your surroundings are a little brighter; you see a flower and then another and another; you thaw slowly out of your winter shell and somehow, just like that, you’ve made it through winter. Now it is spring, and you can feel it in everything. All things, even simply walking out of Birch Hall each morning, are a little more hopeful. 

My co-op this spring is sustainability at Antioch, which has multiple aspects. The main part of my co-op is a project funded by a grant from the Ohio Environmental Protection Agency, written by Kim Landsbergen (my co-op supervisor) and Hannah Montgomery. This grant provides funding for a co-op student (me!) to create a self-guided tour of the Antioch campus that highlights the sustainable practices we have here. The tour will include ten stops, each having a sign with pictures, some basic information, and a QR code that, when scanned, will lead to a webpage with more in depth information about each location. Some tour stops include the Antioch farm, the wellness center, on-campus forest restoration areas, and pollinator gardens. Currently I am working on designing the signs and once the designs are finalized and sent out to the printing company, I will spend a couple weeks working on the online aspect of the tour. 


Students and parents considering Antioch, folks who live in the village, and tourists visiting Yellow Springs frequent our campus on a daily basis. Any of these visitors may walk onto campus without any context and wonder why the grass is so tall and unkempt or what in the world the strange building with the bright, multicolored pipes could be. Once the sustainability tour is complete, visitors will be able to recognize that instead of a landscaping mishap, our grass is intentionally left unmowed to aid pollinators, soil quality, and lower our carbon emissions. The building with all the seemingly random pipes is actually our geothermal plant, which allows us to heat and cool many of the buildings on campus with one of the most sustainable and efficient types of energy there is. Another exciting part of the project? As a student, seeing the same things on our campus each day, it’s easy to simply forget to really LOOK. I’m hopeful that Antioch students for years to come will be able to learn from the work I’m putting into this project now and who knows, maybe it will even inspire them to consider their environmental impact a little closer. 


That is my co-op so far; it’s a big part of my first Antioch spring. But not the only part. Going on co-op teaches students not only the lessons we learn from our individual co-op jobs, but it’s also meant to give us a jump start on “real world” lessons that can only be learned from experience. One aspect of my co-op that has been challenging for me is work/life balance. With a big project like this, where accomplishing my set goals is extremely important to me, it’s hard not to think about work every moment of every day. 

But I am doing my best! While working hard on my co-op, I am also taking time to nourish the creative part of me, the part of me that yearns for art and beauty and peace. I am working in the darkroom with photo genius and baker extraordinaire (one of the kindest people I’ve met), James Luckett. This mentorship has been so rewarding and I look forward to it each week. I submitted a photo collage to a tension within it, an exhibit in the Herndon Gallery curated by my talented friend Viktor Shinkle, whose artistic eye I admire very much. I also got to attend the exhibit opening with many wonderful artist friends, and it was such a hit! I’ve spent countless cold spring mornings and evening sunsets at Glen Helen, Clifton Gorge, or just walking through our little town appreciating the vibrant greens and yellows and purples of the season. And I’ve been lucky enough to laugh and talk and walk and listen to music and cook and and see movies and share food and joy and community with so many people who truly bring joy into my life. This is a full, unabridged recounting of my spring so far, and I am so thankful.