Washington U St. Louis to Raise Minimum Wage to $15
The university's chancellor recently announced that the minimum hourly wage for regular employees and basic service contractors will be raised to $15 by July 1, 2021. The decision affects about 1,200 workers.
Elizabeth City State U Earns Approval for Sustainability Studies Program
The University of North Carolina System Board of Governors recently approved a Bachelor of Science in Sustainability Studies at Elizabeth City State University, which is planned for a fall 2020 launch, pending review and approval of the university accrediting agency (SACSCOC) and the U.S. Department of Education. The program will provide broad interdisciplinary knowledge and skills that are required to address the inherent collaboration between environmental, human and technological systems that affect sustainability-related problems in the world today.
AASHE 2019 Workshop: CURC Campus Recycling Workshop
This full-day pre-conference workshop from College & University Recycling Coalition (CURC) will include a mix of keynote presentations from recycling experts, case studies of collegiate waste reduction programs, and panel discussions on a range of campus-related recycling, zero waste and sustainable materials management topics. Participants will have opportunities to network and learn from recycling and sustainability managers from schools across the country during extended round table discussions.
Second Nature Receives $303K to Support Cross-Sector Climate Action
Second Nature recently received $303,000 from a private donor to further the organization’s work advancing collaboration and partnerships across sectors for scalable climate solutions. Second Nature’s cross-sector climate programs are part of its newly released core strategy to exponentially accelerate climate action through higher education over the next decade.
AASHE Member Discount: Subsidized Sustainability Consulting
The Chrisner Group LLC is offering qualified AASHE member institutions the opportunity to obtain subsidized support for the institution’s ongoing sustainability performance measurement through its Subsidized On-Call Sustainability Strategy Program.
U British Columbia Purchases Only Ocean Wise Seafood
As of July 1, the university will purchase and offer only 100 percent Ocean Wise recommended seafood. The change will include every food service location on both the UBC Vancouver and UBC Okanagan campuses, excluding franchises.
Rutgers U Announces Endowment to Help Neediest Students
Beginning in academic year 2020-21, the university will begin efforts to raise a $3 million endowment to support the Scarlet Promise Grants, formerly called Rutgers Assistance Grants, in perpetuity. The renewed focus on this grant program grew out of two task forces commissioned by Rutgers’ Board of Trustees – the Task Force on Student Aid and the Task Force on Philanthropy. The student aid task force found that a growing number of students are unable to complete their degrees because of limited resources, while others can graduate but leave college saddled with significant debt.
Augusta U Appoints Chief Diversity Officer
Dr. Tiffany G. Townsend has been named chief diversity officer effective Sept. 1. Townsend previously served as the senior director of the Office of Ethnic Minority Affairs at the American Psychological Association. Prior to that, she served as chair of community liaison/outreach in the Center for Trauma and the Community and adjunct associate professor of psychiatry at Georgetown University School of Medicine.
U Texas Dallas Building Earns LEED Gold
The new Engineering and Computer Science West building is 200,000 square feet and hosts research and teaching labs, faculty offices, student workspaces and a 300-seat auditorium. The building, which opened in August 2018, combines passive design strategies, high-performance assemblies and calibrated shading elements to reduce overall solar heat gain while maximizing daylight. R&D Magazine honored the building with a 2019 Lab of the Year Award-Special Mention for Engineering Labs.
U Southern Denmark to Focus SDG Integration Across University
(Denmark) In mid-June, the Executive Board of the university decided that the 17 U.N. Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs) are to become the focal point for its work as a university. The basis of the transformation will be research and education, and will include 17 new, one-year master programs as well as integration of the SDGs in courses.
2020 Roy Family Award for Environmental Partnership
Harvard's Belfer Center for Science and International Affairs at the Kennedy School of Government is accepting nominations for the Roy Award. Presented every two years, the award recognizes cross-sector partnerships that enhance environmental quality through novel and creative approaches.
Rice U Forms University Task Force on Racial Injustice
University president David W. Leebron and provost Marie Lynn Miranda recently announced the creation of a Task Force on Slavery, Segregation, and Racial Injustice that will begin in the fall semester. The group is charged with discovering, documenting, acknowledging and disseminating Rice’s past with respect to slavery, segregation, and racial injustice; developing campus-wide programming to support discussion on this topic; and identifying suggestions for the furthering a diverse and inclusive university.
Mount Holyoke College Dining Achieves Green Restaurant Certification
Certified by the Green Restaurant Association, the college's dining facilities have been certified as Level 1 Certified Green Restaurants. The Green Restaurant Association awards points in seven categories: water efficiency, waste reduction and recycling, energy, disposables, sustainable food, sustainable furnishings and building materials, and chemical and pollution reduction.
Georgia State U & U Massachusetts Dartmouth Win EPA WasteWise Awards
The two universities won the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency WasteWise awards in the college/university category for reducing select industrial wastes that would otherwise be disposed in landfills or incinerated. The program recognizes organizations that have the best overall improvement in waste prevention and recycling activities when compared to the previous year.
Indiana U-Purdue U Indianapolis Launches Seed Library
The IUPUI University Library debuted its new seed library in mid-June allowing patrons to take small envelopes of non-GMO seeds of culinary herbs. The project was made possible by a Greening IUPUI grant from the Office of Sustainability. The first year of the grant will concentrate on the easy-to-grow herbs, with vegetables, flowers and other native plant species expected to be added in 2020.
U Colorado Boulder Building Obtains LEED Platinum
The university's Village Center Dining and Community Commons is a 113,225-square-foot student hub featuring an aeroponic garden, a rooftop photovoltaic array, electrochromic glass windows, a biodigester, a bicycle-powered smoothie station, and LED lighting throughout. An efficient irrigation system for the native and adaptive landscaping plants coupled with water-efficient fixtures in the building is expected to result in more than 450,000 gallons of reduced water use each year.
U Pittsburgh Displays Art Using Nonconventional Materials
A collaborative, new art project between architecture and engineering students seeks to better understand how nonconventional materials – bamboo, cardboard, plywood and recycled plastic bottles – perform in the elements. A plywood bench supported by the cardboard tubes marks the center of the piece and invites passersby to sit and take a look.
Sterling College Adopts Vision Focused on Ecological Crisis
The college's new Strategic Vision 2020-2030 names the forces causing the climate emergency and offers five overarching commitments to advance ecological thinking and action through learning. In order to hold themselves accountable, the Board of Trustees structure will change into five councils. Progress in fulfilling each of the five commitments
included in the strategic initiative will be assessed by these five newly established councils with membership that is composed of trustees, faculty, staff and students.
Recycling Rates & Organizational Behavior Survey
A research team at the University of Virginia is studying how organizational behavior effects recycling rates. Anyone doing work related to recycling at a higher education institution is invited to participate in this research. Upon completion of the survey, participants have the opportunity to opt in to future communication regarding our results. The first 300 participants will have the option to receive a $10 payment or donate their payment to one of the following non-profits: Natural Resources Defense Council or the Ocean Cleanup.
U North Carolina Asheville Begins Using ESG Investing Lens
Following a multi-year effort initiated by UNC Asheville student leaders, the university's Board of Trustees recently approved using environmental, social and governance (ESG) criteria for approximately 10 percent (roughly $5 million) of its endowment that will be divested from fossil fuel investments.
Free UN Sustainable Development Courses
Seventeen universities have developed an initiative to educate learners about the SDGs. Coursera is the primary platform where online courses are offered for the general public to learn about one or more of the goals. Some of the courses provide a hands-on experience with an NGO or international organization who is working to achieve the SDGs through their work.
Chatham U Launches Community Food Bank Farm
Students at Chatham University’s Falk School of Sustainability and Environment are now growing a variety of crops for local communities in need through a partnership with the Greater Pittsburgh Community Food Bank’s Green Grocer mobile farmers market program.
Falmouth U Declares Climate and Ecological Emergency
(U.K.) In recognition of the threat that climate change poses to the environment and communities, both locally and globally, the university hopes to galvanize its resources, research and knowledge for the protection and benefit of the planet.
U Pittsburgh–Johnstown Attains Audubon Cooperative Sanctuary Designation
To be certified, the university's 655-acre grounds and 15 miles of trails met environmental management standards in five key areas: environmental planning, wildlife and habitat management, water quality and conservation, resource management, and outreach and education. Recertification is required every three years to maintain the designation.