Overall Rating Silver - expired
Overall Score 51.68
Liaison Franklin Lebo
Submission Date Jan. 11, 2019
Executive Letter Download

STARS v2.1

Baldwin Wallace University
AC-8: Campus as a Living Laboratory

Status Score Responsible Party
Complete 4.00 / 4.00 Franklin Lebo
Assistant Professor of Sustainability
Sustainability
"---" indicates that no data was submitted for this field

Is the institution utilizing its campus as a living laboratory for multidisciplinary student learning and applied research in relation to Air & Climate?:
No

A brief description of the student/faculty projects and how they contribute to understanding campus sustainability challenges or advancing sustainability on campus in relation to Air & Climate:
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Is the institution utilizing its campus as a living laboratory for multidisciplinary student learning and applied research in relation to Buildings?:
Yes

A brief description of the student/faculty projects and how they contribute to understanding campus sustainability challenges or advancing sustainability on campus in relation to Buildings:
The SP2017 SUS400X: Capstone students worked with the VP of University Relations, Dan Karp, to assess the sustainability signage on campus and develop a plan for placement of additional signage on campus buildings and completed a sustainability campus walking tour map. Also, as a result of these efforts, a new interactive platform to allow the BW community and visitors to better engage with campus facilities has been developed and is currently in the final beta testing phase by University Relations.

Is the institution utilizing its campus as a living laboratory for multidisciplinary student learning and applied research in relation to Energy?:
Yes

A brief description of the student/faculty projects and how they contribute to understanding campus sustainability challenges or advancing sustainability on campus in relation to Energy:
Through the FYE100 (First Year Experience 100) course titled "Can I Create a Sustainable Life?" instructed by the Co-Director of Sustainability, Dr. David Krueger, students complete a campus sustainability challenge every fall semester. The FA18 sustainability challenge was for students to assess the energy and water efficiency of the washing machines and dryers in the student dormitories. The students then had to present their results to before the Campus Sustainability Committee to determine the next steps for campus wide implementation of their recommendations. Please see the included PowerPoint in the additional files added to this section for the details of their findings and recommendations.

Is the institution utilizing its campus as a living laboratory for multidisciplinary student learning and applied research in relation to Food & Dining?:
Yes

A brief description of the student/faculty projects and how they contribute to understanding campus sustainability challenges or advancing sustainability on campus in relation to Food & Dining:
BW is engaged with a multi-faceted student/faculty effort to deal with sustainability issues as they relate to food and dining on campus. Some of the examples of these projects include:

(1) The Campus Kitchens Project. At Campus Kitchens across the country, students combat food waste and hunger by transforming surplus food from dining halls, community gardens, restaurants, and grocery stores into healthy meals. Baldwin Wallace is the 51st Campus Kitchen to join a growing national network and the third in the state of Ohio. BW's team turned 2,500 pounds of donated food waste into 800 community meals through the Campus Kitchen Project in 2016 and has continued to perform this function in subsequent years.

(2) Sustainable Foodstops Initiative - BW volunteers representing multiple student organizations from Veterans Affairs to the student Multi-Cultural Center are engaged in food recovery from campus events. Dr. Christy Walkuski of BW's Office of Community Outreach (OCO) coordinates these efforts. One example of student/faculty collaboration in this regard is that Dr. Brian Krupp of the computer science department is assisting students to create a Sustainable Food app as a means of quickly dispersing messaging across campus when food becomes available to indicate how much there is and when it ought to be collected. Additional related faculty/student collaboration includes the involvement of the Sustainability Capstone students in assessing the sustainability of campus dining services in order to consider what might be adjusted in terms of food options and how waste streams might be better managed. For one article describing some of these ongoing activities please see:
https://www.bw.edu/news/2016/nonprofit-pioneer-egger-helps-students-launch-campus-kitchen-at-bw.

Is the institution utilizing its campus as a living laboratory for multidisciplinary student learning and applied research in relation to Grounds?:
Yes

A brief description of the student/faculty projects and how they contribute to understanding campus sustainability challenges or advancing sustainability on campus in relation to Grounds:
The Campus Landscape Committee, chaired by Dr. Kathryn Flinn, is comprised of both faculty and students. This committee continues to retain a careful inventory of the species of trees and other vegetation across campus. They successfully sought under the guidance of Dr. Kathryn Flinn Tree Campus USA certification with the Arbor Day Foundation in April of 2017. For more information please visit: https://www.bw.edu/news/2017/04-tree-campus-usa-arboretum

Is the institution utilizing its campus as a living laboratory for multidisciplinary student learning and applied research in relation to Purchasing?:
Yes

A brief description of the student/faculty projects and how they contribute to understanding campus sustainability challenges or advancing sustainability on campus in relation to Purchasing:
(1) Through the FYE100 (First Year Experience 100) course titled "Can I Create a Sustainable Life?" instructed by the Co-Director of Sustainability, Dr. David Krueger, students complete a campus sustainability challenge every fall semester. The FA18 sustainability challenge was for students to assess the energy and water efficiency of the washing machines and dryers in the student dormitories. The students then had to present their results to before the Campus Sustainability Committee. Students then contacted the supplier of the washers and dryers on campus with the assistance of the Director of Residence Life, Robin Gagnow, who serves on the Campus Sustainability Committee to better understand the university's contractual duties and purchasing options going forward. Please see the included PowerPoint in the additional files added to this section for the details of their findings and recommendations.

Is the institution utilizing its campus as a living laboratory for multidisciplinary student learning and applied research in relation to Transportation?:
No

A brief description of the student/faculty projects and how they contribute to understanding campus sustainability challenges or advancing sustainability on campus in relation to Transportation:
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Is the institution utilizing its campus as a living laboratory for multidisciplinary student learning and applied research in relation to Waste?:
Yes

A brief description of the student/faculty projects and how they contribute to understanding campus sustainability challenges or advancing sustainability on campus in relation to Waste:
(1) The Director of Res Life, Mr. Robin Gagnow with the assistance of Sustainability Graduate Student Intern James Workman, successfully secured a Recycling Container Grant from the Cuyahoga County Solid Waste Management District to fund student Eco-Reps on campus This resulted in new reclycing bins in select dormitories last semester titled "Landfill waste", "Food Waste", and "Recyclables." Mr. Gagnow's office worked in close relationship with the undergraduate student interns to provide eduation to the students in the dormitory on a floor-by-floor basis.

(2) At the instigation of the former Student Body President and Sustainability Major, Kevin Warman, and with the support of the Sustainability program, Elkay EZH2 water fountains and refillable water bottle stations with digital counters showing how many plastic water bottles have been saved by each respected fountain have been installed in multiple buildings across campus (e.g., 3 EZH2 stations in the Ritter Library, 1 in Bonds, 2 in Kamm, 1 in the Honors Dormitory, 1 in the Student Union). Students are encouraged through sinage to bring reusable water bottles to class and take advantage of the refilling stations as a water conservation effort. Each EZH2 station states, "Helped eliminate waste from XXXXXXXX disposable plastic bottles." The count of plastic water bottles diverted from the waste stream from the aforementioned stations is 375,147 plastic bottles as of 12.18.2018.

Is the institution utilizing its campus as a living laboratory for multidisciplinary student learning and applied research in relation to Water?:
Yes

A brief description of the student/faculty projects and how they contribute to understanding campus sustainability challenges or advancing sustainability on campus in relation to Water:
In 2017, BW and the Richfield Joint Recreation District (RJRD) established a BW field station at the 336-acre Richfield Heritage Preserve, site of the former Crowell-Hilaka Girl Scout Camp, where students and faculty conduct class activities and research.

The site offers experiential opportunities for students in a range of disciplines. Several research projects underway or completed by students from the BW Department of Biology and Geology include:

(1) Tracking lake water quality by monitoring oxygen levels and water temperature,
(2) Mapping soils and water features to identify environmental issues such as erosion and chemical contamination, and
document the diversity of reptiles, amphibians and insects such as 17-year cicadas and bumble bees.
(3) Using trail cameras to monitor mammal activity, especially the movement of coyotes
(4) Documenting the diversity of reptiles, amphibians and insects such as 17-year cicadas and bumble bees.

For more information, visit: https://www.bw.edu/news/2017/fall/10-field-station-richfield-heritage-preserve

Is the institution utilizing its campus as a living laboratory for multidisciplinary student learning and applied research in relation to Coordination & Planning?:
Yes

A brief description of the student/faculty projects and how they contribute to understanding campus sustainability challenges or advancing sustainability on campus in relation to Coordination & Planning:
(1) Two committees presently exist for students to engage in student/faculty projects to aid in their understanding of campus sustainability challenges and advancing sustainability initiatives on campus including the Campus Sustainability Committee and the Campus Landscape Committee.

(2) Students have also participated in the preparation of this STARS report in pursuit of either a major or minor in Sustainability. The Capstone class of sustainability students will continue to participate in the gathering of data for this STARS report in preparation for the BW's next submission.

Is the institution utilizing its campus as a living laboratory for multidisciplinary student learning and applied research in relation to Diversity & Affordability?:
Yes

A brief description of the student/faculty projects and how they contribute to understanding campus sustainability challenges or advancing sustainability on campus in relation to Diversity & Affordability:
(1) JACKET PHILANTHROPY PROGRAM
The Jacket Philanthropy Program is a student-led philanthropy program implemented through academic service-learning. Students in participating courses provide direct service to nonprofit organizations. In addition to their service hours, students have the opportunity to award grant funds to selected organizations.

The program focuses on three areas of need: children and youth programs; neighborhood development and revitalization; and hunger, homelessness and health issues. Students are responsible for developing an RFP (Request for Funding Proposal), preparing the grant proposal, and engaging in a group decision-making process to award the funds. Each class receives funding to distribute.

In the past five years, 266 BW students provided close to 4,000 hours of service and awarded $61,500 in grant funds.

(2) URBAN SEMESTER PROGRAM
Urban Semester is a "study-away" program where students live, work and study in Cleveland. Students live in a community at the Archwood House (a BW-owned facility in Cleveland's Brooklyn Centre neighborhood), take urban studies-related courses, gain real world experience through a for-credit internship and engage in community and cultural activities.

Students benefit from their involvement in the program by connecting with other students, local professionals and community leaders; completing the urban studies minor and EXP graduation requirement in one semester; connecting professional and personal passions; developing professional skills through a nonprofit internship; serving with fellow participants through service-learning courses and other group service opportunities; and exploring Cleveland's vibrant arts and cultural communities, food scene and diverse neighborhoods.

(3) PROJECT AFFINITY
Project Affinity is an urban summer service program coordinated by the Center for Community Engagement. Students live together at the Archwood House, a BW-owned facility in Cleveland's Brooklyn Centre neighborhood. Through service and community events, students are able to explore social justice issues, develop a direct relationship with individuals in Brooklyn Centre and the greater Cleveland community, and gain an understanding of nonprofit work.

Is the institution utilizing its campus as a living laboratory for multidisciplinary student learning and applied research in relation to Investment & Finance?:
No

A brief description of the student/faculty projects and how they contribute to understanding campus sustainability challenges or advancing sustainability on campus in relation to Investment & Finance:
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Is the institution utilizing its campus as a living laboratory for multidisciplinary student learning and applied research in relation to Public Engagement?:
Yes

A brief description of the student/faculty projects and how they contribute to understanding campus sustainability challenges or advancing sustainability on campus in relation to Public Engagement:
The BW Community Research Institute (CRI) provides consulting and research services to government agencies, nonprofits, foundations, community-based organizations, businesses and the media. As such, it engages in multiple ongoing collaborative projects with the community and students on campus. One specifically sustainability related project overseen by Dr. Tom Sutton and Dr. Pierre David in 2016 was the Assessment of the Impact of the Northeast Ohio Regional Sewer District Communication and Community Relations Efforts. This resulted in a significant student that students helped to prepare and was the third of its kind.
https://www.bw.edu/centers/community-research-institute/

Is the institution utilizing its campus as a living laboratory for multidisciplinary student learning and applied research in relation to Wellbeing & Work?:
Yes

A brief description of the student/faculty projects and how they contribute to understanding campus sustainability challenges or advancing sustainability on campus in relation to Wellbeing & Work:
The Minds Matter Resource Fair was held on March 14, 2018 in the Union and is part of a larger effort by the university to address the community’s growing need for mental health support. According to Jackie Rodriguez, health promotion director, there has been a rise in interest from faculty members for these services.

The resources offered at the fair are based off of the Six Dimensions of Wellness, a model created by the National Wellness Institute as a basis for their philosophy as an organization. Both the organization and the model were created to in 1977, and it has set the standard for promoting wellness since. In the model, there are six specific elements of life that all contribute to one’s wellness equally.”

To provide both students and staff with a wide range of resources, and in an effort to cover all six dimensions, BW partnered with several external organizations including Southwest General Hospital, Oak View Behavior Health, and Cleveland Rape Crisis Center. In addition to these organizations, there was also a number of resources native to BW present, including the school of nursing which provided free health screenings, and the counseling center which focused on stress relief.

Stress relief is one of the most effective methods to promote one’s wellbeing, according to Tim Hall, assistant director of prevention and outreach at Counseling Services. To help students deal with this, the counseling center set up an activity to create what they called stress-less kits.

Some other resources provided at the fair were “massage chairs, aromatherapy, a happy light which is for full light spectrum light therapy, and an air cleaner which helps change some of the ions in the air to boost mood,” said Rodriguez.

Another goal of the resource fair is to raise awareness of mental health directed at students who may not be aware of the support systems in place.
This Exponent article is available at: https://bwexponent.com/news/2018/05/03/mind-matters-resource-fair-promotes-mental-health-awareness/. For the BW Wellness office's homepage, please visit: https://www.bw.edu/student-life/wellness/.

Is the institution utilizing its campus as a living laboratory for multidisciplinary student learning and applied research in relation to other areas (e.g. arts & culture or technology)?:
Yes

A brief description of the student/faculty projects and how they contribute to understanding campus sustainability challenges or advancing sustainability on campus in relation to other areas:
3.23.2018 - What would Northeast Ohio's forests look like if we could take a time machine back to the turn of the 19th century before settlers arrived? How have the forces of urbanization changed the landscape from 1800 to now? What should restoration goals for the county's carefully preserved "Emerald Necklace" park system look like in the future? A BW biology professor, Dr. Kathryn Flinn, and junior BW biology major Tylor Mahany '19, dug into those questions through "witness tree" research that relies on observations recorded in handwritten field books from the area's very first land surveys. Meticulous maps and analyses of such records at the Western Reserve Historical Society were compared to a more recent survey of forestland completed by Dr. Constance Hausman, a plant and restoration ecologist with the Cleveland Metroparks.The findings, just published in the international Journal of Vegetation Science, show tremendous changes in the region's plant communities over the past 200 years. Back then, the area was 94 percent forested with most woodlands dominated by beech or oak trees. Most of the remaining areas were covered by wetlands.

By 2014, development had swallowed up half of the wetlands and reduced forested areas in the county to less than 20 percent. Maple, elm and cherry trees, which bounce back easier and faster after disturbances, have replaced many of the once-dominant native trees, and the region's vegetation has become more homogeneous, losing much of its original variety.

One takeaway from the data is that "[c]onservationists might explore future land acquisitions with beech and oak forests," Flinn notes. "Those types of additions would make protected parklands more representative of the pre-settlement era when half the forests were dominated by beech trees and a third were oak."

Flinn presented the research at two public forums including the Western Cuyahoga Audubon Society September 4 at Rocky River Nature Center, and the Kirtlandia Society September 8 at the Cleveland Museum of Natural History.

The website URL where information about the programs or initiatives is available:
Additional documentation to support the submission:
Data source(s) and notes about the submission:
Dr. Christy Walkuski, Director of Community Engagement and Service Learning along with Associate Director Julie Robinson are greatly appreciated.

Dr. Christy Walkuski, Director of Community Engagement and Service Learning along with Associate Director Julie Robinson are greatly appreciated.

The information presented here is self-reported. While AASHE staff review portions of all STARS reports and institutions are welcome to seek additional forms of review, the data in STARS reports are not verified by AASHE. If you believe any of this information is erroneous or inconsistent with credit criteria, please review the process for inquiring about the information reported by an institution or simply email your inquiry to stars@aashe.org.