North Campus added some flavor to their club line up this fall.
The Vegan Club, which held its first meeting on Nov. 17, is open to students seeking to learn about the trending, natural lifestyle. Jeffrey Atkins, the club’s adviser, believes the organization is the first of its kind at Miami Dade College.
“The organization’s goal is to spread vegan awareness and support organization members and the community in the long journey toward a more sustainable and compassionate, plant-based future,” Atkins said.
Focus of the club, which currently has nine members, will be on vegan diets and planning community service projects in partnership with Voice for the Voiceless, an organization that concentrates on bringing awareness to animal rights. Service projects will be geared toward assisting rescued farm animals and volunteering at events and wildlife sanctuaries.
Club meetings will consist of fundraising opportunities, speaking about the vegan lifestyle and sharing different affordable vegan recipes. A hummus recipe was passed around to members during the first meeting.
Atkins said the organization’s aim is to rebuke stereotypes that people usually associate with the lifestyle, including its lack of protein and high cost.
“What I hope to accomplish is that, through educating those who are curious about the club or the lifestyle, we can bust the myths people have and show that anyone, even college students, can be vegan without thinking they aren’t getting the right nutrients or that it will cost them too much money,” he said.
Members see the organization as an opportunity to educate people on the vegan lifestyle and its health benefits and the impact it has on the environment.
“We plan on spreading our message in the most inexpensive, positive and sustainable way we can,” said Priya Pershadsingh, the Vegan Club’s president.
Pershadsingh was instantly drawn to the organization.
“I had heard talks about there being a Vegan Club and if anyone was interested in joining it and I immediately became attached to it because I really liked the message the club had and the purpose behind it,” Pershadsingh said.
This isn’t her first attempt at exploring a sustainable lifestyle. During the spring semester, Pershadsingh campaigned around North Campus with the Institute for Civic Engagement and Democracy and the Earth Ethics Institute, collecting signatures in hopes of replacing the cafeteria’s styrofoam containers with renewable, environmentally friendly containers.
Pershadsingh, a mass communications and journalism major, helped collect 300 signatures. She is awaiting approval of the project.
“I have been a vegetarian for about a year now because of animal rights reasons and I’m beginning to get into the vegan lifestyle,” she said. “This is something that is very dear to me and I knew that being part of the club can help make a difference to a lot of people.”
The club’s next meeting is scheduled for Dec. 6 at 12 p.m. in Room 4206. For more information, contact Jeffrey Atkins at firstname.lastname@example.org or at (305) 237-1684.