APES strives to sustain local communities


Following in the footsteps of the charitable history of their predecessors at Diamond Bar High School, this year’s AP Environmental Science classes have yet again put themselves up to the task of organizing, planning and implementing numerous projects to better the community. With the new year, initiatives such as Operation ReLeaf, Eco-Move, Save Our Soil and Second Time Around have come to fruition, each with their own goals and messages for the world around them. Some projects incorporated popular trends in the application of their projects. Second Time Around, a sustainable thrift shop, was opened on campus as a part of APES teacher Jason Malveaux’s third period project. 

“Our goal is to reduce the pollution made from the process of making clothes,” junior Tanya Ding said. “We also want to spread awareness about sustainability through society.”

The project considered not just the positive environmental effects of the work , but also the efficiency with which it could reach the student body. Utilizing the rise in popularity of thrifting in teenage culture in the 2020s, the team was able to center their project around this idea to better connect with their audience.

“We came up with the idea…because it gave students an opportunity to thrift clothes for cheap while also reducing the environmental impacts caused from clothes making,” Ding said. “In return, the thrift shop made over a hundred dollars and also shined light on harmful environmental impacts such as pollution.”

Other projects like Operation ReLeaf, focused on more practical solutions to improving the environment on campus. Members of Operation ReLeaf organized a school-wide trash cleanup, implementing a more accessible method of trash separation. 

“Trash cans for recyclable plastic, compostable trash and paper will be installed and with descriptions so students know where their trash belongs,” the Public Relations team said via a press release. 

In order to raise support and funds for their initiative, students from APES teacher John Valor’s sixth period APES class hosted a school rally event during lunch in March to gain support from peers and spread their message of environmental conservation. In addition, they visited Evergreen Elementary School with games and activities to both engage and educate the youth about their goals. They coded an interactive mobile app with minigames in order to achieve this goal. This app gave the elementary schoolers an opportunity to virtually clean up trash and take quizzes about the information they had learned.

“Operation ReLeaf is aimed for students and teachers to take small steps towards being more mindful about waste disposal in order to create a more ecologically-friendly campus and community,” the Public Relations team for ReLeaf said. “We also hope to influence others outside DBHS to join our campaign and together make a more beautiful Earth.”