Hello! My name is Emmy, and I am a first year student at Orchard Commons. I am from San Diego, California. I have a dog at home, and I love marvelling at all the squirrels and birds at UBC, because I have a deep love for animals!

Most of you know I’m vegan since I proudly wear my vegan sweatshirt with words like “nonviolence” and “compassion” on it. I wear it because I want to spread awareness about how eating a vegan diet can truly make a meaningful impact in our world.

I became vegan because my values of kindness and respect for all life do not align with eating dead animals. Additionally, there are many other health and environmental reasons to follow a plant-based lifestyle. Becoming vegan is the most empowering decision I have ever made.

I wrote a sheet full of fun facts and reasons to go vegan, so if you ever see me, I’d be more than happy to talk about it. Here are two big ones:

  • 30% of all our global land is deforested and 70% of our fresh water is used for the meat industry (it takes about 2,500 gallons of water to produce a pound of beef)!
  • More greenhouses gases (such as methane) come from the meat industry than the whole transportation sector combined!

Eating a vegan diet can positively change our world, and we are so lucky to be here at UBC because there are a tremendous number of vegan options. Every single day I am excited to try something new! There are such good vegan soups, beans, Thai tofu bowls, lentil burgers and I can go on and on, but my hope is you will check it out yourself – just look around – it’s so easy to find a nutritional and tasty vegan dish!

In fact, if you buy nine vegetarian dishes in residence dining rooms, your tenth one is free – what an incentive! Just ask the cashiers for a stamp card. Also, if you have a sweet tooth, there are vegan desserts at the residences like cookies, and I especially love the carrot cake at Orchard Commons.

Around campus, there are so many vegan options: Delicious curries at Seedlings Cafe, burritos at The Loop Café, and if you head to the JJ Bean in Central there is a whole variety of vegan muffins like pumpkin apple! In Wesbrook Village, Virtuous Pie will be opening very soon, which will serve vegan pizza and ice cream – yum!

My point is, if you’re ready to try plant-based eating, UBC is the place to be, because there are options everywhere. Most of all, have fun with all this food you’re about to try! The environment will thank you, your health will thank you, animals will thank you, and of course, your taste buds will thank you!

And now, I must thank UBC, for being so open and supportive to the vegan lifestyle and for caring so much about sustainability! Whenever you’re feeling discouraged, look around and feel a burst of gratitude as you realize that you’re here at UBC – a world full of possibility!

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