Public Engagement

Introduction

Engagement in community problem-solving is fundamental to sustainability. By engaging with community members and organizations in the governmental, non-profit and for-profit sectors, institutions can help solve sustainability challenges. Community engagement can help students develop leadership skills while deepening their understandings of practical, real-world problems and the process of creating solutions.

1766 resources

Bridging the Gap: Creating Partnerships to Support Off-Campus Housing Sustainability

  • University of Arizona (AZ)

In 2013, the University of Arizona launched the Undergraduate Off-Campus Housing Sustainability Coordinator (OCHSC) position designed to bring sustainability into the homes of students living off-campus. The OCHSC consults with ...

  • Posted Nov. 18, 2016
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Building Community and University Collaboration on Food Justice in Mississippi: Lessons from the MSU Learn and Grow Garden

  • Mississippi State University (MS)

Mississippi is the most food insecure state in the nation. In 2014, 22% of families reported some level of hunger. However, Mississippi remains an agriculture-focused state with some of the ...

  • Posted Nov. 18, 2016
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Communicating Sustainability Progress in a Busy World

  • University of Maryland, College Park (MD)

The University of Maryland publishes an annual Sustainability Progress Report to keep the campus community informed of overall progress toward the university's sustainability goals. The intended audience, format, structure ...

  • Posted Nov. 18, 2016
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Launching & Sustaining an Educational Partnership for Innovation in Communities (EPIC): PALS at UMD

  • University of Maryland, College Park (MD)

Universities around the country are implementing a powerful learning framework in which students and faculty address local community sustainability issues through adapting current courses to provide real world learning and ...

  • Posted Nov. 18, 2016
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Building Sustainable Communities: an International Collaboration Between Island Communities and Academia

  • College of the Atlantic (ME)

Through community engagement and a plan for economic rejuvenation Samsø¸ Island, Denmark became one of the first carbon negative communities in the world. In 2014, an international partnership between Samsø ...

  • Posted Nov. 18, 2016
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Putting the People First: A look at UT Austin's Sustainability Master Plan

  • University of Texas at Austin (TX)

Sustainability plans often align with traditional university functions: academics, operations and administration. UT Austin took a different approach to their first ever Sustainability Master Plan, resulting in a people-centric plan ...

  • Posted Nov. 18, 2016
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Community Based Teaching - Carbon accounting with local businesses from the Prince George Chamber of Commerce

  • University of Northern British Columbia (BC)

Climate change has given rise to a new generation of opportunities for sustainable business. In order to reduce greenhouse gas emissions, British Columbia has implemented several policies, including a carbon ...

  • Posted Nov. 18, 2016
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Bridging Formal and Informal Learning Spaces to Accelerate Innovation in Higher Education.

  • SERES (Sacatepequez)

How do we transform our existing institutions and centers of learning at a scale and pace fast enough to prepare young people for the challenges that lie ahead? SERES - winner ...

  • Posted Nov. 18, 2016
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The Wicked Problems in Sustainability Initiative - Creating and Supporting a Multi-Institution Course Community

  • Engineers for a Sustainable World (DC)

Creation or replication of multidisciplinary courses with real-world context is limited by technical and economic constraints at many institutions. Efforts that connect multiple institutions to multidisciplinary resources can enable success ...

  • Posted Nov. 18, 2016
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Fuelling a Place-Based Sustainability Movement

  • University at Buffalo (NY)

Building a better future by definition is a collective effort, but often at times throughout higher education we focus inward within our own institutions. While this is a practical and ...

  • Posted Nov. 18, 2016
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More than the environment! The journey to a community-engaged, multi-dimensional sustainability course

  • Macalester College (MN)

In 2014, we began a program called Educating Sustainability Ambassadors (ESA) which aims to broaden the understanding of sustainability on campus and emphasize the interconnections between a healthy natural environment ...

  • Posted Nov. 18, 2016
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Black Hills South Dakota Food Hub

  • Black Hills State University (SD)

Black Hills State University (BHSU) conducted an assessment of cafeteria needs for local foods in the winter of 2015, and we have specific knowledge of which large-quantity food providers have ...

  • Posted Nov. 18, 2016
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Carolina Survivors Initiative: Building Cultures of Inclusivity and Healing in South Carolina

  • University of South Carolina (SC)

Launched in Fall 2015, the Carolina Survivors Initiative (CSI) serves the needs of recently resettled survivors of torture in Columbia, SC. With a goal of bringing global health to the ...

  • Posted Nov. 18, 2016
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The Process of Progress: Involving Multiple Academic Partners and Disciplines

  • Daemen College (NY)

The East Side of Buffalo represents one of the most neglected neighborhoods within the fourth poorest US city. In 2012, a grassroots coalition began brainstorming ways to improve their community ...

  • Posted Nov. 18, 2016
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Advancing Climate Equity: Urban University-Community Networks

  • University of Wisconsin-Milwaukee (WI)
  • Urban Serving Universities Coalition (DC)

Our presentation will focus on the urban serving university as a critical stakeholder in local sustainability efforts, and in addressing environmental equity as a critical cornerstone of urban sustainability efforts ...

  • Posted Nov. 18, 2016
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Sustainability Education in Northern Appalachia: Connecting Gender, Race and Class in Interdisciplinary Sustainability Studies

  • Indiana University of Pennsylvania (PA)

This case study will address our efforts to connect gender, race and class in an interdisciplinary sustainability program at a university historically tied to the fossil fuel industry. Our efforts ...

  • Posted Nov. 18, 2016
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Student Activism for Community Energy Efficiency: Harnessing ENERGY STAR Activities and Resources for the Public Good

  • American University (DC)

As part of an annual elective course in Sustainable Design, American University (AU) graduate students in the Global Environmental Politics program in the School of International Service undertake a real-world ...

  • Posted Nov. 18, 2016
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How Resource Innovation and Solutions Pioneered on the ASU Campus is Growing a Worldwide Network

  • Arizona State University (AZ)

This is the story of how Arizona State University, through a systems approach to public engagement and a unique collaboration with the city of Phoenix, created the Resource Innovation and ...

  • Posted Nov. 18, 2016
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Carbon On-Setting: Community Impact Through Home Weatherizations in Greenville, SC

  • Furman University (SC)

This case study will tell the story of the Community Conservation Corps (CCC), the program highlighted by Second Nature in Furman University's selection as a Climate Leadership Finalist in ...

  • Posted Nov. 18, 2016
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Creating Resilient Communities: Climate Change and the Power of Public/University Research Service Learning Partnerships

  • University of Virginia (VA)

New research and bold actions are essential as climate change and sea level rise threaten coastal communities. According to NASA, 53% of the US population lives near the coast. How ...

  • Posted Nov. 18, 2016
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Experiential Sustainability Certificates - Connecting the Classroom to the Real World

  • Duke University (NC)
  • University of Kansas (KS)

The 'living lab' concept is not new in the higher ed. sustainability world. However, developing robust programs that allow students, across disciplines, to study these complex issues while linking curricular ...

  • Posted Nov. 18, 2016
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Green Demonstration Buildings - A Facilities Management Perspective on the Benefits (and Challenges) of Being Innovative

  • Nova Scotia Community College (NS)

15 years ago the Nova Scotia Community College made a commitment to being an industry leader in sustainability. This commitment aligned with major infrastructure changes at all 13 campuses, including ...

  • Posted Nov. 18, 2016
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A New Way to Turn Trash Into Cash - The University of San Diego Electronics Recycling Center

  • University of San Diego (CA)

The University of San Diego Electronics Recycling Center (USD ERC) will present updates on successes and challenges in the 5+ years of operating a sustainable business enterprise. This highly transferable ...

  • Posted Nov. 18, 2016
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Green Meets Brown: University of Louisville Eco-Reps and Community Composting

  • University of Louisville (KY)

The University of Louisville Eco-Reps are a sustainability training & networking group offering certifications, hosting monthly lunches, local speakers, & field trips, and organizing volunteer projects. Our longest-running project was ...

  • Posted Nov. 18, 2016
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From Baltimore to Burundi: The Case for Crossing the Divides of Diversity by Building toward Sustainable Peace and Development

  • Colorado State University (CO)

Amahoro' is the Kirundi word for peace. After forty years of genocide and civil war during which a large percentage of its educated citizens were targeted, exiled or killed, impoverished ...

  • Posted Nov. 18, 2016
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Energize Colleges: Energy Education and Internships for the Campus and Community

  • Skyline College (CA)
  • Strategic Energy Innovations (CA)

Energize Colleges is an innovative program bringing energy education and project-based internships to 12 California community colleges and universities. Launched earlier this year, the program employs clean energy as the ...

  • Posted Nov. 18, 2016
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Sustaining the Memory of Enslaved Laborers at the University of Virginia: a Participatory and Collaborative Public Art Project

  • University of Virginia (VA)

The University of Virginia's Rotunda and Lawn are majestic institutional symbols of the only US campus recognized as a UNESCO world heritage site. Yet Jefferson's architectural masterpiece harbor ...

  • Posted Nov. 18, 2016
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The Prize of Collaboration is Resilience. Universities Lead on Inter-Organizational Reuse of Surplus Assets and Equipment.

  • GetWarpIt

This presentation explores a UK case study where Universities are leading on the sharing of surplus assets and collaborating with other Universities, Municipal Councils, Hospitals, schools and not-for-profits. This is ...

  • Posted Nov. 18, 2016
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Finding the Hidden Gems While Building Community: Place-based Pre-orientation Programs at Earlham College

  • Earlham College (IN)

Earlham College's PLACE (Perspectives on Living and Community Engagement) Program, first offered in 2015, aims to connect incoming students with the local community, student and faculty leaders, and one ...

  • Posted Nov. 18, 2016
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The Climate Narrative Project: Training a New Generation of Climate Storytellers

  • University of Iowa (IA)

What accounts for the gap between science and action on climate change, and what can we do more effectively to communicate informed stories and galvanize action? The Climate Narrative Project ...

  • Posted Nov. 18, 2016
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Global Collaboration, Local Action: Insights and Ideas from two International Networks

  • Yale University (CT)
  • International Sustainable Campus Network (ISCN) (MA)

Comprised of 11 members, the International Alliance of Research Universities (IARU) established a campus sustainability initiative in 2009.This group's outputs to-date include a student exchange program, conferences, and ...

  • Posted Nov. 18, 2016
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Assessing Effectiveness of Sending Students to AASHE Conference

  • The Ohio State University (OH)

Having brought several students to AASHE over the years, Ohio State's Office of Student Life was challenged to determine if spending 'all that money' has been 'worth it.' How ...

  • Posted Nov. 18, 2016
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Energy Feedback Sculpture: Using Public Art to Motivate Sustainable Behavior

  • Iconic Energy Consulting

Public art, particularly interactive art, is uniquely positioned to communicate and engage. How might universities, institutions, and cities take advantage of public art to motivate sustainable behaviors among their constituencies ...

  • Posted Nov. 18, 2016
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The University of Baltimore Know Your Bay Learning Community

  • University of Baltimore (MD)

The University of Baltimore Know Your Bay Learning Community involved 3 courses: Urban Solutions, First Year Seminar, and Great Issues in History. Students in the learning community explored the historical ...

  • Posted Nov. 18, 2016
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The University of Texas at Austin Green Tours Program

  • University of Texas at Austin (TX)

UT Green Tours began in 2014 as an effort to connect all of the sustainability efforts on campus with the University and wider community. Initially all of the information regarding ...

  • Posted Nov. 18, 2016
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Ecological Restoration on a Liberal Arts Campus: On-site and Community Development

  • Drew University (NJ)

Situated on a small suburban campus in Madison, New Jersey, in a densely populated region of the US, Drew University attracts students to come live in the 'forest,' while accessing ...

  • Posted Nov. 18, 2016
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Zero Waste Restroom Hand Towel Pilot: Kimberly Clark and Purdue University Partner in Mackey Arena

  • Purdue University (IN)
  • Kimberly-Clark Professional (GA)

Kimberly-Clark Professional and Purdue University partnered to develop and implement a zero waste restroom paper hand towel compost pilot in Purdue's Mackey Arena (seats 14,846) for the 2015-16 ...

  • Posted Nov. 18, 2016
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Arbor Day Event Trains Environmental Stewards

  • Southern Oregon University (OR)

Since 2014, SOU's Landscape Services Dept has hosted an annual Arbor Day Celebration inviting local K-12 schools, members of the surrounding community, our own student body, faculty, staff, and ...

  • Posted Nov. 18, 2016
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Higher Education Food Task Force: Institutional Cooperation Addressing Food Security and Sustainability Issues

  • University of Utah (UT)

We created a Higher Education Food Task Force with the seven major institutions along what is known as the Wasatch Front in Utah, which is the major population center for ...

  • Posted Nov. 18, 2016
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Sustainable campuses: best practices and sustainable innovations in French-speaking Higher Education by 2030

  • Graines de Changement

How green are French-speaking campuses ? What is at stake regarding teaching, IT/digital, student life, housing or building ? What is really going on in French-speaking European countries for HEE ? 'Campus ...

  • Posted Nov. 18, 2016
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Make a Ripple. Join a Wave: Developing experiential communication campaigns to accelerate positive perceptions in sustainability

  • University of British Columbia (BC)

Encouraging positive perception & behavior change requires an integrated approach to communication, education & awareness. UBC's annual Ripple Effect is a multi-channel, student-focused campaign that explores & exemplifies all ...

  • Posted Nov. 18, 2016
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Greening Laboratories: US Freezer Challenge

  • Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (GA)

In 2012, the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention conducted its first Freezer Challenge, a two-month agency-wide competition addressing cold storage practices in laboratories. CDC reduced energy use by 320 ...

  • Posted Nov. 18, 2016
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New England Farm & Sea to Campus Network

  • Farm to Institution New England (VT)

Join us for this networking session. The New England Farm & Sea to Campus Network formed in 2015 in order to help connect campus-based stakeholders and other food system stakeholders ...

  • Posted Nov. 18, 2016
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Phoenix Project: scheme of assistance to victims of fire

  • Universidad de Monterrey (NL)

In the need to provide quality care to victims of fire in the Metropolitan Area of Monterrey, Mexico, Project Phoenix was created. Project Phoenix seeks to help out improving basic ...

  • Posted Nov. 18, 2016
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Building Student Leadership Through Networks: Connecting Higher Education Institutions Through Behavior Change Projects

  • Augsburg University (MN)
  • University of Minnesota, Twin Cities (MN)

This poster focuses on the value of connecting students, faculty and staff across boundaries. In this case, we connected across institutions, learning from each other and developing a network for ...

  • Posted Nov. 18, 2016
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From "me" to "we" in the Academic World Towards Sustainability: Path and Purpose

  • Stevens Institute of Technology (NJ)

My passion to create a shift in society will hopefully show you how to switch from "me" to "we" and build a Sustainable World. Two years ago, I discovered my ...

  • Posted Nov. 18, 2016
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Powering a New South: Sustainabilty through Student Engagement in the University Press and Beyond

  • Coastal Carolina University (SC)

Through an examination of the processes, experiences, and outcomes of a yearlong, multi-disciplinary, experiential university press project, instructors and press advisors will examine energy through the lens of our local ...

  • Posted Nov. 18, 2016
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How Higher Education can Foster Innovations for Sustainability

  • Oklahoma State University (OK)

Using a historical methodology to review places of innovation and intentional communities, three commonalities were identified as fundamental to the process of creating sustainable and innovative environments. For those interested ...

  • Posted Nov. 18, 2016
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Knowledge Flows Downstream: Partnering to Build Watershed Awareness on Campus and at Local Elementary/Middle Schools..

  • Pennsylvania State University (PA)

A collaboration between Pennsylvania Sea Grant and Penn State Erie, The Behrend College provided undergraduate students with science-based information about watershed health, water quality and the impacts of excess storm ...

  • Posted Nov. 18, 2016
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Creating effective service-learning projects for the sustainability curriculum

  • University of Saskatchewan (SK)

Service-learning (SL) cultivates academic development, personal growth and civic engagement among students; enables them to contribute to community and recognize their ability to act as agents of social change. I ...

  • Posted Nov. 18, 2016
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This tab provides access to data collected through AASHE’s Sustainability Tracking, Assessment & Rating System™ (STARS). STARS is a transparent, self-reporting framework for colleges and universities to measure their sustainability performance. STARS enables meaningful comparisons over time and across institutions using a common set of measurements developed with broad participation from the campus sustainability community. Additional content and advanced benchmarking tools will be added to this tab over time.

Programs and Initiatives

The following links connect to specific Content Displays on the STARS website (AASHE membership and log-in required).

Scores

The following link connects to the Score Display on the STARS website (AASHE membership and log-in required).

Public Engagement Partners

Environmental Association for Universities & Colleges

Cheltenham, Gloucestershire
Business Affiliate

Fostering Sustainability

Toronto, ON
Business Affiliate

Global Footprint Network

Oakland, CA
Business Affiliate

Rivanna Natural Designs

Richmond, VA
Business Affiliate
Planet-friendly awards and plaques. FSC-Certified wood, recycled glass