ETHOS is a student food-activism group. Its name is an acronym for “ethical, transparent, homegrown, organic, and sustainable,” which is how they would like the food they consume here on campus to be produced. This semester the roughly 15-person group worked to pass a “Good Food” resolution at Spring Plenary, are continuing partnerships with the Dining Center and the Haverford College Farm, and are advancing food justice education at Haverford.
What: “ETHOS is a group of students working for ethical food by promoting equal trade, homegrown, organic and sustainable food in the Dining Center and in Haverford’s many kitchens,” says group member Laura Eckstein ’16. “We know that growing a food-activism movement requires learning in and out of the classroom. As a group, we seek to develop skills to help us grow as leaders, farmers, cooks, organizers, scholars and active members of the community. We also seek partnership with friends and allies on and off campus fighting for a just and sustainable future.”
Who: No one person runs ETHOS. Instead, the group has a horizontal structure in which members decide for themselves which tasks they want to lead, something they call “bottom-lining.” “Every quarter we switch who facilitates our weekly meetings and we try to encourage everyone to try many roles and responsibilities throughout their ETHOS experience,” says Eckstein.
When: The club started in Spring 2013, after a group of EarthQuaker members decided Haverford needed a club solely focusing on food justice on campus. ETHOS now meets every Thursday night at 8 p.m. on the second floor of the Campus Center outside the Women’s Center. “We have a subgroup dedicated to ‘group fun’ that organizes events just for the purpose of bonding as a club,” says Eckstein. “These events have included eating dinner together and making s’mores in the Skate House.”
Did you know? ETHOS’ events include Food Day, during which they bring people from food and agriculture companies, farms, and nonprofits to campus to distribute samples and information; a Valentine’s Day event that shows appreciation to the Dining Services staff via posters and individual Valentine’s for every DC staffmember; topical film screenings; panels, such as the one they held last fall featuring farmworkers from the Kaolin Mushroom Workers Union; and a Hurford Humanities Center-sponsored book group on “The Color of Food.”
Get involved: Email firstname.lastname@example.org.
-Jenny Ahn ’17
Photo by Elena Harriss-Bauer ’19