Title
St. Thomas Aquinas College Becomes 53rd Fair Trade College in the Nation

Oct 24, 2018

St. Thomas Aquinas College Becomes 53rd Fair Trade College in the Nation

St. Thomas Aquinas College is proud to announce its official designation as a Fair Trade College — part of a national initiative by Fair Trade Campaigns to engage college and university students in issues of global poverty. Fair Trade is an economic system that ensures consumers the products they buy were grown, harvested, crafted and traded in ways that improve lives and protect the environment. Fair Trade Campaigns officially recognizes schools in the US committed to educating students about the issues of Fair Trade and sourcing Fair Trade products, like coffee, tea and bananas in the cafeteria, offices and at events.

With over 170 Fair Trade Colleges and Universities in the United Kingdom alone, the USA program grew out of work in Europe and the increasing demand for Fair Trade and ethically produced products to be incorporated into institutional purchasing.  Fair Trade Campaigns sees the tremendous impact institutional purchasing in the US can have on farmers and artisans worldwide. 

“There are few things more exciting than seeing today’s youth come to understand the role that they can play as consumers in making the world a more fair and just place. To see them become not just conscious consumers, but advocates for Fair Trade, should challenge all of us to do the same.” stated Billy Linstead Goldsmith, Director, Fair Trade Campaigns.

There are now over 280 active Fair Trade Campaigns in towns and schools, as well as on campuses across the country. Deirdre Engels, Associate Professor of Marketing at St. Thomas Aquinas College added, "We are thrilled to be the 53rd US College in the nation to earn the Fair Trade College Certification, that makes us the 6th College in New York State. This student-led initiative began as a small independent study which was highlighted at the Ignite Research symposium. Since Fair Trade principles of sustainability and social justice are a natural fit with our campus, the STAC New Hope Movement was born. This collaborative team of students, faculty and administrators worked to meet the campus certification requirements through further incorporating Fair Trade principles into our curriculum and serving fair trade products such as Ben & Jerry’s Ice Cream at our campus dining facilities. We are so proud of the team’s accomplishments and we are excited to introduce our third wave of independent studies where students gain experiential skills in running a Fair Trade startup business in collaboration with Haitian artisans. We are so happy to see that a small idea can build into campus-wide movement."

About Fair Trade Campaigns:  Fair Trade Campaigns is a grassroots movement mobilizing thousands of Fair Trade advocates on campuses and communities across the USA.  Fair Trade Campaigns recognize towns, colleges, universities, schools and congregations in the US for embedding Fair Trade purchasing practices and principles into policy, as well as the social foundations of their communities. Project collaborators include  Fair Trade USA, Fair for Life, and Fairtrade America third-party certifiers of Fair Trade products in the United States, the Fair Trade Federation, a North American trade association of organizations fully committed to Fair Trade.  Visit www.FairTradeCampaigns.org for more information.

Logo for Fair Trade, Colleges & Universities

St. Thomas Aquinas College is proud to announce its official designation as a Fair Trade College — part of a national initiative by Fair Trade Campaigns to engage college and university students in issues of global poverty. Fair Trade is an economic system that ensures consumers the products they buy were grown, harvested, crafted and traded in ways that improve lives and protect the environment. Fair Trade Campaigns officially recognizes schools in the US committed to educating students about the issues of Fair Trade and sourcing Fair Trade products, like coffee, tea and bananas in the cafeteria, offices and at events.

With over 170 Fair Trade Colleges and Universities in the United Kingdom alone, the USA program grew out of work in Europe and the increasing demand for Fair Trade and ethically produced products to be incorporated into institutional purchasing.  Fair Trade Campaigns sees the tremendous impact institutional purchasing in the US can have on farmers and artisans worldwide. 

“There are few things more exciting than seeing today’s youth come to understand the role that they can play as consumers in making the world a more fair and just place. To see them become not just conscious consumers, but advocates for Fair Trade, should challenge all of us to do the same.” stated Billy Linstead Goldsmith, Director, Fair Trade Campaigns.

There are now over 280 active Fair Trade Campaigns in towns and schools, as well as on campuses across the country. Deirdre Engels, Associate Professor of Marketing at St. Thomas Aquinas College added, "We are thrilled to be the 53rd US College in the nation to earn the Fair Trade College Certification, that makes us the 6th College in New York State. This student-led initiative began as a small independent study which was highlighted at the Ignite Research symposium. Since Fair Trade principles of sustainability and social justice are a natural fit with our campus, the STAC New Hope Movement was born. This collaborative team of students, faculty and administrators worked to meet the campus certification requirements through further incorporating Fair Trade principles into our curriculum and serving fair trade products such as Ben & Jerry’s Ice Cream at our campus dining facilities. We are so proud of the team’s accomplishments and we are excited to introduce our third wave of independent studies where students gain experiential skills in running a Fair Trade startup business in collaboration with Haitian artisans. We are so happy to see that a small idea can build into campus-wide movement."

About Fair Trade Campaigns:  Fair Trade Campaigns is a grassroots movement mobilizing thousands of Fair Trade advocates on campuses and communities across the USA.  Fair Trade Campaigns recognize towns, colleges, universities, schools and congregations in the US for embedding Fair Trade purchasing practices and principles into policy, as well as the social foundations of their communities. Project collaborators include  Fair Trade USA, Fair for Life, and Fairtrade America third-party certifiers of Fair Trade products in the United States, the Fair Trade Federation, a North American trade association of organizations fully committed to Fair Trade.  Visit www.FairTradeCampaigns.org for more information.


St. Thomas Aquinas College is an independent liberal arts college located in Sparkill, Rockland County, NY which provides education at the undergraduate and graduate levels.  The College’s 2,800 full and part time students can choose from more than 100 different majors, minors, specializations, and dual degree programs across three schools: Arts & Sciences, Business, and Education. The College was recognized by U.S. News & World Report in the Top-Tier for Regional Universities, by Colleges of Distinction in both its New York and Catholic editions and is included on the Military Friendly Schools® listing.  St. Thomas Aquinas College is accredited by the Middle States Association of Colleges and Schools; its School of Education is accredited by Council for Accreditation of Educator Preparation (CAEP); and its School of Business is accredited by the International Accreditation Council for Business Education (IACBE).  For more information, visit www.stac.edu.