Overall Rating Gold - expired
Overall Score 67.61
Liaison Jennifer Palilonis
Submission Date Sept. 28, 2012
Executive Letter Download

STARS v1.2

Ball State University
ER-12: Sustainability Immersive Experience

Status Score Responsible Party
Complete 2.00 / 2.00 Delaina Boyd
Associate Vice President for Community Engagement
Office of Community Engagement
"---" indicates that no data was submitted for this field

Does the institution offer a program that meets the criteria for this credit?:
Yes

A brief description of the sustainability-focused immersive experience(s) offered by the institution:

Our Building Better Communities (BBC) Program, our Ecosa Institute Semester, our Sustainability for the Americas Program and our outreach through the Student Voluntary Services (SVS) Program all meet the criteria for this credit.

Sample products of student involvement through BBC include:

_____Project Title:
Charter Schools: Patterns of Innovation; A New Architecture for a New Education

Dates: 2009-2012

Key Players:
Ball State Office of Charter Schools; Pamela Harwood, Department of Architecture; Andrea Swartz, Department of Architecture

Description:
During 2009 -2012, the student teams worked with selected charter schools in Indiana developing overview reports on these schools. This was followed by research on best practices and high performance school design for the design of new or renovated charter school facilities. Students conducted case study research, nationally and in the state of Indiana, on exemplary charter schools and high performance “green” school design to develop ways to incorporate issues of curriculum, funding, facility planning, and sustainable strategies into the overall design of the building. This information was used to develop concepts or “patterns” for incorporating environmentally sustainable strategies into the planning and design of charter school buildings. Team members travelled to eight charter schools in Indiana, interviewed students and faculty, discussed the schools’ pedagogical philosophies with administration and board members, and developed school profiles examining curriculum, funding and facility planning. At the end of each semester, the students will complete the profiles and extract/articulate design principles for incorporating in an illustrated guidebook, which is updated every semester as the project progresses. This book as well as the development of a comprehensive website will serve to distribute the information to a wider audience.
Web Link:
http://cms.bsu.edu/About/AdministrativeOffices/BBC/Fellows/RecentProjects/CharterSchools.aspx

_____Project Title:
Greening Indiana Communities

Dates:
2007-2008 (Business Fellows)

Key Players:
Westfield Washington Schools; Muncie Unitarian Universalist Church; James Eflin, Department of Natural Resources and Environmental Management

Description:
Students worked with two community groups that were interested in improving the environmental performance of facilities and incorporating “green stewardship” ideals into operations. They conducted research into best practices and conducted background studies of demographic and other factors of the communities to inform recommendations about procedures or practices they could adopt to enable green stewardship. A slide presentation and report were produced to help the Green Committee at the church identify improvements to its facilities and within its congregation to address environmental goals necessary to follow church principles for stewardship. A report including an environmental assessment and recommendations for operations and management of the present and future school facilities was given to the facilities manager of the schools.

_____Project Title:
JFNew NativeSpec Database Development

Dates:
Fall 2009 Semester

Key Players:
JFNew; Martha Hunt, Department of Landscape Architecture; Robert Koester, CERES and Department of Architecture, Emerging Technologies Department

Description:
Students from a variety of disciplines collaborated with JFNew and the Ball State Emerging Technologies unit to design and develop a searchable database tool to be used for specifying native plant species for ecological restoration projects. The database accepts user inputs regarding site conditions such as soil type, hydrology, solar exposure, and bioregion and then searches a database of several hundred native plant species to provide recommendations for the optimal project specification. Throughout the project, the students interacted with restoration ecologists, native landscape designers, botanists, and native plant nursery professionals to define the need and scientific constraints to make this database system a highly useful productivity tool. The final product was a decision support tool that will help ensure the success of sustainable landscaping and ecological restoration projects. The project won a national communications award in September 2010 from the American Society of Landscape Architects

_____Project Title:
Muncie Sanitary District Watershed Project

Dates:
2007-2008 (Business Fellows)

Key Players:
White River Watershed Project (Delaware County Soil and Water Conservation District); Jennifer Bott, Department of Marketing and Management

Description:
Ball State University students developed a community outreach program for the Jake’s Creek residential area of the Muncie Sanitary District (MSD) to address stormwater reduction. The team looked at the continuing problem of sewer overflow after significant rainfalls, its consequences, and how residents could reduce the amount of stormwater runoff on their property. The team created a Water Conservation Fair Day for the residents to educate them on the benefits of rain barrels, rain gardens, and other flood reduction options. Students designed mini-rain gardens and created lists of the plants so the residents could re-create the design at home. They also held a rain barrel workshop to teach residents how to install and use a rain barrel.

_____Project Title:
Sustainability and Local Food Systems including Highlander Fieldtrip

Dates:
May-June 2009

Key Players:
Shelly Glowacki-Dudka, Ed Studies

Description:
BBC provided administrative support for this project. Program was designed to heighten participants’ understanding about sustainability and local food systems as it relates to educating and engaging communities in projects such as community gardens, farmer’s markets, slow food movements, and co-ops. The program included a field trip to the Highlander Research and Education Center in New Market, Tennessee where the participants learned about Highlander’s role in community education over the last 75 years.

_____Project Title:
Sustainability Report for Ball State University—Global Reporting Initiative

Dates:
Fall 2010 Semester

Key Players:
Gwen White, Department of Accounting

Description:
Students learned about the Global Reporting Initiative Sustainability Guidelines and applied their knowledge in preparing a sustainability report for Minnetrista Cultural Center in Muncie, IN. Minnetrista's sustainability report communicates the organization's environmental, economic, and social impacts. The report communicates these impacts to stakeholders and allows the organization to monitor its progress in becoming more sustainable. Students acquired experience that puts their work among the largest 250 companies in the world.
Additional opportunities for Immersive Sustainability Experiences include:

_____Ecosa Institute Semester
Through special arrangements between Ball State University and the Ecosa Institute located in Prescott, Arizona, a unique spring semester opportunity is available for students in the Architecture, Landscape Architecture and Urban Planning programs to participate in a remote studio working with students from around the country. The Ecosa Institute Semester offers field trips, lectures, guest speakers and projects which engage sustainable design in its wholeness -- from architecture, to perma-culture, to product design, to urban design, to environmental design, to community planning.

Client-based, real-world design projects serve to teach holistic thinking “in action” to bring the threads of sustainability together into practical solutions. At the end of the semester students will have gained a strong foundation in what David Orr calls “ecological literacy” an understanding that is crucial for our future leaders in all fields.

As sustainable design is an integrative and multi-disciplinary process, this program is open to students and professionals from a wide range of backgrounds and disciplines. The Ball State connection builds on a long-term commitment to develop mutually supporting programs between Ball State University and The Ecosa Institute.

_____Sustainability for the Americas
This program enables exchange students to work with Ball State students on a number of Green Technology research, education and demonstration projects.

_____Additional Project opportunities have included:

• LDI LandLab as a Resource-balancing design
• EPA-P3 Straw Bale Building and Resource-balancing Built-site Systems monitoring

The straw-bale built-site is designed as a resource-balancing integrated water-wastewater-energy-building-landscape system that harvests resources, transports these resources, processes them, distributes these resources for use and uses, regenerates resource quality, and returns these high quality resources back to the site.
http://ecocenter.iweb.bsu.edu/


The website URL where information about the immersive experience is available:

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 and complete the Data Inquiry Form.