"To explore and take into account the social and environmental consequences of any job I consider and will try to improve these aspects of any organizations for which I work."

Since 1987, the Graduation Pledge of Social and Environmental Responsibility has been offered at colleges and universities throughout the world. The goal is to build a global community of responsible graduates improving society and the environment through the workplace. Whitman College seniors have been taking the pledge since 2006.

An article from May of 2006 explains the Green Pledge as a symbol of social responsibility. Whitman psychology major Carlene Deits ’06 of Seattle, Washington, coordinated the pledge signing at Whitman during her senior year. One of the first to sign, she explained her support:

“After having the privilege to attend a school as academically and socially enriching as Whitman, this pledge signifies my commitment to give back the fruits of my education. The pledge reflects the important of social responsibility and a dedication to approach the work world with heightened awareness of our personal impact on the world around us. And beyond just awareness, the pledge calls for action. Rather than leaving jobs because of issues such as excessive waste or reliance on slave labor, we might consider staying and working for change. It seems to me that the greatest opportunity to change destructive and unsustainable tendencies of our potential employers is to work from an internal position grounded in collaboration.”

Past pledgers: