SUNY New Paltz Earns Tree Campus USA Designation
The university has joined other U.S. colleges and universities that have met campus environment standards established by the Arbor Day Foundation, a nonprofit membership organization dedicated to planting trees. A small group of students, faculty, staff and community members came together this year to work toward earning Tree Campus USA designation, an honor reserved for schools that meet five requirements focused on strategic and long-term plans to care for and manage trees on campus.
SUNY New Paltz Launches Sustainability Track for Business Management
SUNY New Paltz has launched a new line of business courses designed for students interested in applying sustainable practices to their future careers. The new sustainability track for management majors will provide opportunities for students to work with local companies on sustainability assessments to achieve cost savings and reduce environmental footprints.
U Idaho Research Building Receives LEED Gold
The university's new interdisciplinary research facility features include dedicated bicycle parking and electric vehicle charging spaces; metal paneling and automatic window shades that let in natural light while reducing glare and heat; and a 3,500-cubic-feet rainwater catchment system used to water trees, native grasses and plants.
National Recycling Coalition 2017 Awards Call for Nominations
The National Recycling Coalition is accepting nominations through 5 p.m. Eastern on June 30 for outstanding higher education programs. The Outstanding Higher Education Program award will go to a college or university with an exceptional program in recycling or connecting higher education and the industry in the areas such as degrees and career services.
U Illinois Urbana-Champaign Expands Energy Saving Campaign
With the support of a grant from the Student Sustainability Committee, a one-time, energy-saving initiative now happens monthly. Student volunteers walk through campus buildings to turn off lights that were left on at the end of the day. During seven scheduled walk-throughs during the 2016-17 school year, teams turned off more than 11,000 light fixtures, avoiding approximately $3,400 in energy costs.
U Wyoming Lighting Upgrade Creates Efficiency & Saves Money
Thanks to a proposal by a student pursuing a sustainability minor, the university is now taking advantage of cost avoidance by using energy-efficient LEDs in place of metal halide lighting. The lighting retrofit has an estimated payback of eight years.
Guide to Assessing Basic Needs Insecurity in Higher Education
Drawing from research on basic needs security at colleges around the nation, Wisconsin HOPE Lab produced this guide to support college and university efforts to assess food and housing security among students. This guide describes how to perform two types of studies: surveys to assess basic needs security, and opportunistic small scale experiments to evaluate the effectiveness of programs meant to address basic needs security.
San Diego State U Building Achieves LEED Silver
The university's newest residence hall features a lighting control system with occupancy sensors, photo-sensors for daylight harvesting and 100 percent LED lighting. The two towers also have an automated heating and cooling system and water-saving shower heads in the resident rooms.
U California Merced Launches Food Exchange & Engagement Program
To help address issues ranging from food waste to food insecurity and resource scarcity, the university recently launched CropMobster Merced County, an online food and agricultural exchange and community engagement program. CropMobster, an online platform introduced in the San Francisco Bay Area in 2013, aims to bring together farmers, producers, hunger relief organizations and community members. Part of the program's funding comes from the UC Office of the President as part of its ongoing Global Food Initiative.
AASHE Member Discount: $100 Off ACCO Climate Change Professional (CC-P) Credential
AASHE members are eligible to receive a $100 discount on the Climate Change Professional (CC-P) credential offered by the Association of Climate Change Officers (ACCO). ACCO is a nonprofit membership organization whose mission is to define, develop and support the functions, resources and communities necessary for effective organizational leadership in addressing climate-related risks and opportunities. The discount expires June 30.
U Illinois Urbana-Champaign Residence Hall Earns LEED Gold
The residence hall opened in fall 2016 and features locally manufactured construction materials, products with recycled content, wood products certified in accordance with the Forest Stewardship Council, roof mounted solar panels to provide renewable energy that offsets one percent of the energy costs, and landscaping that includes native and drought-tolerant plants to reduce dependency on potable water.
Wege Center for Sustainable Design Announces Winners of Wege Prize 2017
Wege Center for Sustainable Design, housed at the Kendall College of Art and Design at Ferris State University, announced the winners of Wege Prize 2017, the fourth iteration of the annual design competition challenging transdisciplinary teams of college and university students to rethink and redesign the way economies work. Three multi-institutional teams were selected as winners out of the five finalist teams.
U Oregon Releases Videos From Summit on Ethical Investing
A recent symposium about ethical investing was organized by students, faculty, staff and the University of Oregon Foundation in early April 2017, largely in response to the student divestment campaign. The gathering tackled the question of how climate change is affecting businesses and investors. The sessions were recorded and can be viewed for free.
Harvard U to Retrofit Home as Model of Ultra-Efficiency & Affordability
The Harvard Center for Green Buildings and Cities announced plans to retrofit its headquarters, a pre-1940s house, into an ultra-efficient, healthy, positive-energy structure. Called HouseZero Project, the prototype will be designed to require almost zero energy, rely on natural daylighting, and produce no carbon emissions. The center aims to show how any existing building can become a model of efficiency and cut emissions without requiring a huge investment.
Three Schools Win Green Cleaning Award
The 2017 Green Cleaning Awards, hosted by American School & University, recognized Western Michigan University as the grand prize winner, University of Michigan for the silver award, and Folsom Lake College as honorable mention. The juried competition highlights education institutions whose green cleaning programs go above and beyond using green products to protect health without harming the environment.
Sustainability, Diversity, Equity & Inclusion Workshop: 4 Days Left to Register
June 2 is the registration deadline for this workshop for faculty, administrators and staff of all disciplines who wish to interconnect and integrate sustainability, diversity, equity and inclusion into their campus, curriculum and departments. The format will include opportunities for participants to bring forward topics from their own experiences to inform the discussion and gain insight from the perspectives of the presenters as well as fellow participants. The workshop is happening June 28–30 at University of Minnesota Institute on the Environment.
U Colorado Boulder Creates 'Social Justice Living Environment' in Dorm
In fall 2018, the Social Justice Living Environment will house communities for students who identify as black, LGBTQ and those passionate about diversity. The new program stemmed from student concerns following a campus climate survey revealing only a quarter of African-American undergraduates and less than half of undergraduates, in general, felt welcome on campus.
Webster U Publishes Interactive Eco-Map
In early May, the university published a campus map that highlights the spectrum of green infrastructure and resources on campus. The map allows viewers to navigate different layers, such as solar panels, bike racks or water bottle refill stations.
California State U Sacramento Becomes First Keep America Beautiful Collegiate Affiliate
Keep America Beautiful announced that Sacramento State is now its first collegiate affiliate and that it hopes the partnership will result in a model that can be adopted at colleges and universities across the nation. Through the partnership, students will have access to volunteer and internship opportunities. The university will be able to share data from student and faculty research, as well as tap additional resources such as grants, research and programmatic resources available through Keep America Beautiful.
Salisbury U to Build 544KW Solar Carport Project
The 543.9-kilowatt photovoltaic project will feature three solar canopies and five electric vehicle charging stations. The canopies will cover a parking lot and electricity from the system will be sent to the adjacent educational buildings. Standard Solar, the university's partner, will own, operate and maintain the system for 20 years, after which ownership will revert to the university.
U Birmingham Pilots Coffee Grounds Reuse Program
(U.K.) The 12-month pilot program aims to collect spent coffee grounds from catering outlets across campus that will be sent to a recycling company for processing into biofuels, such as fuel starter logs and pellets for industrial use.
Supporting Sustainability on Campus With a Library Action Plan for Engagement
This online course, offered June 5-30, will use a reflective process, readings, exercises and participation in a discussion forum to support the role of the academic librarian in the sustainability movement. The instructors will offer individual feedback to participants as they craft an action plan that matches the needs of their library and institution.
Indiana U Pennsylvania Receives $44K Grant for Watershed Management
Several university faculty will use the new funding from the Pennsylvania Department of Environmental Protection to work with area agencies and schools to develop a water quality and stormwater monitoring plan. In addition to providing watershed educational experiences, the project will generate baseline water quality data for 12–15 key watershed locations that will be utilized to make governmental and environmental policy decisions.
U Pennsylvania Wins 2017 Sustainable Purchasing Leadership Award
The University of Pennsylvania won the Sustainable Purchasing Leadership Council's (SPLC) 2017 Supplier Engagement Award for its collaboration with a local enterprise, Wash Cycle Laundry, to create local jobs, foster the growth of an innovative local business, and reduce the environmental impact of the university’s laundry services. In total, the SPLC recognized ten organizations and one individual for their leadership in the sustainable purchasing movement.
Pennsylvania State U Earns Tree Campus Designation
The university's new designation as a Tree Campus, a program of Arbor Day Foundation, recognizes its commitment to effective urban forest management and for engaging staff and students in conservation goals. The university currently has more than 17,000 trees in its canopy.
Tufts U Grad Students to Unionize
Graduate students in the university's School of Arts and Sciences voted 129-84 to form a union affiliated with Service Employees International Union.
Baylor U Building Receives LEED Gold
The new building, completed in 2015 and housing the Paul L. Foster Campus for Business and Innovation, features a solar-reflective roof, dimmable LED lighting, daylighting controls that allow individuals to adjust the level of lighting based on brightness throughout the day, natural lighting for all interior offices using glass walls and doors, use of low-emitting materials to reduce concentrations of chemical contaminants, and sustainable landscaping and irrigation systems that increase water efficiency and reduce the burden on municipal water supply and wastewater systems.
Queen's U Belfast Announces Responsible Investment Policy
Following recent discussions with the Students’ Union, the university has updated its investment policy and will, with some caveats, seek to disinvest from companies involved in the extraction and production of fossil fuels by 2025. Additionally, the university is implementing a comprehensive Carbon Management Strategy that aims to significantly reduce carbon emissions.
Teaching Business and Human Rights Survey
This survey aims to map the current state of university instruction on the subject of business and human rights issues and related corporate responsibility topics with an explicit human rights dimension. It will do so by identifying where (country, institution, discipline) and in what fashion business and human rights has been integrated into university curricula and academic activities. This online survey is a joint effort of the Principles for Responsible Management Education Working Group on Business and Human Rights, and the Teaching Business and Human Rights Forum. The deadline to contribute is June 15.
AASHE Member Discount: $25 Off Association of Climate Change Officers (ACCO) Membership
The Association of Climate Change Officers (ACCO) is a non-profit membership organization for executives and officials in industry, government, academia and the non-profit community. ACCO’s mission is to define, develop and support the functions, resources and communities necessary for effective organizational leadership in addressing climate-related risks and opportunities. AASHE members can now receive $25 off an individual ACCO membership. Discount expires June 30, 2017.