For this week’s Humans of SECS, we’d like you to meet one of our Beyond Coal co-chairs, Mary Jane Oviatt. MJ is a junior majoring in Natural Resources and Environmental Sciences (specializing in Human Dimensions), with a minor in Horticulture. She is also a member of Pi Beta Phi Sorority and the Student Sustainability Committee Food & Waste working group, the film director for the Green Observer, president of the Illini Greens, and a dishwasher at Bevier Café. MJ has been involved in Beyond Coal since her sophomore year and took over one of the co-chair positions this year.
“You ever see that special about "If humans disappeared today" and by year three New York City resembles a jungle? Some pretty awesome technology figuring that out. But look at the huge underlying message... look at how much man power it takes to hold back the natural forces of this planet. We are actively suffocating this place. We're obsessed with our creations without remembering what already exists. We are so obsessed with living that we have forgotten about the root of our survival--what is a more depressing irony?
It’s a lot of work to maintain this excessive lifestyle. People are speaking out and it helps… It helps my sanity, at least.”
Photographs by Maggie Golden