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2013 Campus Sustainability Day

First off, the Office of Sustainability would like to give a big thanks to all who attended Campus Sustainability Day on Wednesday, October 23, 2013.  The event was a huge success and it could not have been possible without the following individuals who contributed their valuable time, resources, and knowledge:  Dr. Aaron Allen, Dr. Bill Markham, Dr. Catherine Mathews with the UNCG Ecologically SANE Think Tank, UNCGreen, Sarah Dorsey, UNCG Career Services, Deep Roots Market,  Healthy UNCG, and Trey McDonald.

Tres Amigos

From left to right: Dr. Allen, Dr. Markham, Trey McDonald

In addition, congratulations are in order for the three recipients of this year’s Creative Sustainability Initiative (CSI) grants.  This year’s projects, which include a soundscaping trail in Peabody Park, providing views of greenscapes to pediatric hospital patients, and a sheet music scanner made out of recycled materialos on a $0 (thats right zero dollar) budget, should result in a few great presentations at the Earth Day celebration on campus next spring semester.

CSI Project Presentation by Will Hueholt

Peabody Park Soundscaping
CSI Project Presentation by Will Hueholt

All in all, from Dr. Markham’s green jobs presentation to Dr. Allen’s discussion about the Clover Project and from the interactive video screening by Healthy UNCG to the wine and cheese reception, the event was very informative and well received.  Once again, special thanks to all involved in making this happen and to those who took time out of their busy schedules to stop by.

Green Jobs

Green Jobs Presentation by
Dr. Markham and Career Services

Healthy UNCG Interactive Video Presentation

Healthy UNCG
Interactive Video Presentation

Sierra Club’s Cool Schools

UNCG has been ranked in Sierra magazine’s Cool Schools each of the last 3 years.  This year UNCG ranked 76th out of 164 rated schools. Though down from 39th in 2012, that was out of only 96 participating universities. UNCG has done well, there are areas for improvement.  There is a possible 1000 points to earn in 11 categories (Co-Curricular, Energy, Investments, Food, Innovation, Research, Planning, Transport, Purchasing, Water, and Waste) and our total points reached 580.07.

UNCG has already implemented many actions that help the university become more sustainable. These include  creating the student group UNCGreen, having sustainable related classes, constructing nine LEED Buildings, providing “trayless” dining, and supporting the Creative Sustainability Initiative. As successful as we have been in recycling, building and transit issues, however, we did not do as well in areas such as innovation and purchasing.

There are many ways that you can become involved and help raise the score of UNCG. One is speaking out about what you would like to see done on campus and another is learning from faculty and staff about how they can help your ideas come to life. Some ways the top Cool Schools have made the list include constructing alternative energy projects, having stormwater cisterns, hosting an on-campus farmer’s market, and purchasing more local food for their dining halls.

Here at UNCG, we have the world at our fingertips. We are here to learn and to make the world a better place for now and for our future. UNCG is giving students, faculty, and staff the opportunities to come up with ideas and ways to create a better tomorrow by doing something bigger altogether.

 

http://www.sierraclub.org/sierra/201309/coolschools/complete-rankings.aspx

Chad Carwein Bio

cgc_pic 

Hello everyone, my name is Chad Carwein.  As the new Education and Outreach Specialist for the UNCG Office of Sustainability, I wanted to take a moment to introduce myself.  I was raised in Greenfield, which is a small suburb east of Indianapolis, IN. Growing up, I spent most of my summers working on my grandparents’ farm located in Frankfort, KY.

After finishing high school, I received my Bachelor of Arts in Psychology and a Spanish Minor from the University of Kentucky in May 2009.  Just this past December, I completed a unique dual masters degree program at the nationally ranked Indiana University School of Public and Environmental Affairs (SPEA).  As a SPEON, I earned my Master of Public Affairs (MPA) with a concentration in Sustainability and Sustainable Development as well as my Master of Science in Environmental Science (MSES) with a concentration in Environmental Policy and Natural Resource Management.

During graduate school, I became especially interested in working on campus sustainability programs in order to reduce the environmental impacts of university students, staff, faculty, and operations.  Furthermore, I took great pride in leading by example and sharing my knowledge with others through education and outreach activities because I believe that is the best way to foster sustainable behavior as well as a long-range vision and culture for sustainability.  To demonstrate my skills and expertise, here is My Vision for a Campaign to Promote Water Conservation on the UNCG Campus.  For more information on my academic background or to see some examples of my professional work experiences, I invite you to click on any of the following links: Linkedin, Prezume, VisualCV.

Now that I am here, I feel very fortunate to have the opportunity to live and work in Greensboro, NC.  I am also looking forward to meeting many readers of this blog in the coming months, maybe even a few at tonight’s Green Drinks event.  There is one last thing I should mention before wrapping up my personal introduction and that is… Go Wildcats!!!  That’s right, you heard it here first.  Despite growing up in the land of Hoosiers and now relocating to the state with my team’s other two biggest rivals, I am still a blue-blodded CATS fan.  Always have been.  Always will be.  So let the spirited rivalries continue on into the upcoming basketball season.

Emerging Energy Learning Community at UNCG

New for the Fall semester, UNCG is offering a Learning Community focused on emerging energy issues.  Topics will include renewable energy such as solar, financial and social aspects of energy alternatives, and building design for renewable energy options.  The ultimate goal of this LC is to compete in the 2015 Solar Decathlon!  If you are interested, please visit http://learningcommunities.uncg.edu/lc/energy.php.  More information is also available in this slideshow: Emerging Energy Learning Community

Earth Day Academic Fair

Alumni House

Alumni House

We are pleased to share this invitation from Dr. Aaron Allen, our Academic Sustainability Coordinator:

Dear Colleagues,

I write to invite you to share any sustainability related research or teaching in a casual setting on Earth Day. The Sustainability Scholarship Fair will be held 11am-2pm on Monday, 22 April 2013, in the Virginia Dare Room, Alumni House. It will provide an opportunity for faculty currently engaged in teaching and research in sustainability to meet, learn about, and network with others who also are involved in related activities. Sustainability is a core value defined in UNCG’s Strategic Plan 2009-2014 as “the enduring interconnectedness of social equity, the environment, the economy, and aesthetics.”

There is no need to develop anything particular for this event. Rather, we hope you would 1) come with an existing presentation, poster, syllabus, assignment(s), book, article, object, artwork, etc.; 2) situate yourself (at a table or otherwise) in the room for any period of time between 11am and 2pm on April 22; and 3) interact with the other faculty and the students, staff, and community members who stop by.  We will provide food and drink from Zaytoon.

If you have advanced undergraduate or graduate students actively involved in your or their own sustainability work, they are welcome to represent you and/or share their work as well.  Furthermore, if you have research or teaching colleagues at UNCG or in the Greensboro area who might like to participate but who are not included on this message, please feel free to forward this email to them.  The Sustainability Scholarship Fair is free and open to the public, and we are coordinating with other student-organized and UNCG-sponsored Earth Day events (which will be located in the same place and immediately outside).

Please let me know before Thursday, April 11, if you would like to participate in the Sustainability Scholarship Fair, what sort of set up you might need, and the times you would like to be present.  Thank you for considering participation, and don’t hesitate to be in touch with any questions.

Best,
Aaron

REMINDER:  If you’d like to learn more about the UNCG Climate Action Plan, the Sustainability Office will be holding a public workshop from 3:30 – 7:00 p.m. on Thursday, March 28, in the Maple Room of the EUC. This will be an open forum for discussion, punctuated with two presentations on the Plan at 4:00 and 6:00. Here you may get more information about the Plan and discuss ideas with members of the Climate Action Plan teams.

Hope to see you tomorrow!

UNCG’s First LEED Residence Hall

Jefferson Suites is UNCG’s first LEED certified residence hall.  Read more about the technologies that went into the construction of this building in University News: http://ure.uncg.edu/prod/news/campus-news/jefferson-suites-residence-hall-certified-leed-silver/

Jefferson Suites (photo by Mark Wagoner)

Jefferson Suites (photo by Mark Wagoner)

The UNCG Climate Action Plan – FINALLY!

title page

Click on the image to read the plan.

After months of work, the UNCG Climate Action Plan teams have finally completed the first draft of the Plan.  Now, we’re asking for your input.  Please review the Plan and give us your constructive criticisms, comments and suggestions here on the blog or email us at rkmcdona@uncg.edu.  This is a plan for the entire UNCG community, and we want to make sure your ideas and voices are heard.

The Plan will be up for comments through the end of March.  After that, we’ll take all the comments under advisement and incorporate them into the final draft that will be presented to the Chancellor, Executive Staff, and Board of Trustees for final approval.

If you would rather offer comments in person, we will be holding a public workshop in the coming weeks where you may learn more about the Plan and discuss ideas with us.  Stay tuned for the announcement of when and where we’ll hold the workshop.

Thank you for your interest; please offer any comments you have here on the blog.

Congratulations UNCG!

PrintThe Office of Sustainability is pleased to announce that UNCG has received an AASHE STARS Silver rating for the second year in a row! For more information, please go to:

https://stars.aashe.org/institutions/rated/

Welcome Dr. Aaron Allen!

HS-6107 Aaron AllenDr. Aaron Allen is the recently appointed Academic Sustainability Coordinator for UNCG!
Dr. Allen is an award-winning member of the Music faculty. We are excited to have him on board to help spread sustainability throughout the campus. He will be able to use his passion for both music and the environment to help students and faculty learn more about sustainability.

To read more please visit: http://ure.uncg.edu/prod/cweekly/2013/02/26/aaronallen/

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