Overall Rating Gold
Overall Score 65.23
Liaison Roxane Beigel-Coryell
Submission Date March 6, 2020

STARS v2.2

California State University, Channel Islands
AC-8: Campus as a Living Laboratory

Status Score Responsible Party
Complete 4.00 / 4.00 Roxane Beigel-Coryell
Sustainability & Energy Manager
Facilities Services
"---" indicates that no data was submitted for this field

Is the institution utilizing its infrastructure and operations as a living laboratory for applied student learning for sustainability in relation to Campus Engagement?:
Yes

A brief description of the projects and how they contribute to understanding or advancing sustainability in relation to Campus Engagement:

Each year students in the Energy and Society (CHEM 344) class are required to plan and coordinate an Earth Day event. As part of this class project, the students invite other groups to table, plan for their own tables about sustainability topics, and help advertise the event to the campus and community. The CHEM 344 students spend nearly the entire semester preparing for Earth Day. The students work in groups to create educational games, activities, posters and other educational materials to engage the campus community. They budget for and purchase sustainable prizes to hand out to student participants. In 2018, the Earth Day event attracted more than 400 participants.


Is the institution utilizing its infrastructure and operations as a living laboratory for applied student learning for sustainability in relation to Public Engagement?:
Yes

A brief description of the projects and how they contribute to understanding or advancing sustainability in relation to Public Engagement:

CSU Channel Islands (CSUCI) often welcomes K-12 classes in the region to visit the LEED certified and LEED compliant buildings on campus to learn about sustainable building practices and green building features.

Several CSUCI courses include service learning components that engage the public and provide students opportunities for applied learning related to sustainability. One example is a Land Use Planning and Open Space Management course (ESRM 464). This is an interdisciplinary course where students explore theory, policy and practical application relating to a number of locally-relevant environmental issues, impacts, strategies, and processes of contemporary land and sea management. The students work in teams with various community partners to: generate a better understanding of these environmental issues in practice; learn to work with and tailor one's efforts to the needs of a specific organization; and draw on concepts of planning and management to aid local organizations. The teams of students work to address a current question, issue, or need faced by the local partners. Students then research, analyze, and ultimately generate deep insight about potential solutions for the partner organization.

Another course in the Chicana/o Studies Program (CHS 445) created a community garden with the residents of Villa Cesar Chavez, a farm worker housing development that is part of the advocacy housing and economic organization, Cabrillo Economic Development Organization, headquartered in Ventura County. CSUCI students facilitated the process of growing a community-based garden. As part of this project the students taught children, through a literacy-based program, the importance of a plant-based diet. The students also lead a community/collaborative endeavor to plant a community garden with the participation of the children and families living at Villa Cesar Chavez.


Is the institution utilizing its infrastructure and operations as a living laboratory for applied student learning for sustainability in relation to Air & Climate?:
Yes

A brief description of the projects and how they contribute to understanding or advancing sustainability in relation to Air & Climate:

Many Environmental Science and Resource Management students utilize the campus to conduct research and learning relating to air and climate issues. For example, one student completed their senior capstone project on "Microplastic Fallout Abundant in Air and Rainwater". During his capstone research, the student examined the fallout of airborne microplastic in and around CSU Channel Islands' main campus and the Santa Rosa Island Research Station. The student collected air and rainwater samples on campus to study the levels of microplastics present and the impacts on air and water quality.

As part of a physics class, students positioned air sensors in various locations throughout campus to measure air quality. Students analyze the data collected by the sensors every two weeks to assess changes in air quality and identify potential causes, such as wind events, harvest events at neighboring farms, agricultural spray events, etc. This activity enables students to measure the fluctuations in air quality and begin to connect certain activities with their air quality impacts.


Is the institution utilizing its infrastructure and operations as a living laboratory for applied student learning for sustainability in relation to Buildings?:
Yes

A brief description of the projects and how they contribute to understanding or advancing sustainability in relation to Buildings:

CSU Channel Islands regularly takes classes of students for tours of the LEED certified building on campus. Students are asked to identify the sustainable building features and have a discussion about the costs and benefits of green building practices.

CSUCI also welcomes K-12 classes in the region to visit the LEED certified and LEED compliant buildings on campus to learn about sustainable building practices and green building features.


Is the institution utilizing its infrastructure and operations as a living laboratory for applied student learning for sustainability in relation to Energy?:
Yes

A brief description of the projects and how they contribute to understanding or advancing sustainability in relation to Energy:

In 2019, Computer Science students used the electricity and water meters at CSUCI's research station on Santa Rosa Island to build a sustainability platform to display the resource consumption on the island. The students used their computer science knowledge to develop the platform that provides accurate consumption rate data that is collected by utility meters, including electricity and propane, and uploaded to the cloud. The data is then analyzed and presented graphically on an interactive web app that can help decision makers evaluate resource consumption.

http://geraldineharms.cikeys.com/santa-rosa-island-research-station-sustainability-platform/


Is the institution utilizing its infrastructure and operations as a living laboratory for applied student learning for sustainability in relation to Food & Dining?:
Yes

A brief description of the projects and how they contribute to understanding or advancing sustainability in relation to Food & Dining:

Students work with Assistant Professor of Biology, Ruben Alarcon, to manage a small garden on the campus grounds where they grow food for the university's food pantry. The students experiment with different varieties of fruits and vegetables, learn about proper planting times, the value of pollinators, and the importance of growing organic food for the campus community.


Is the institution utilizing its infrastructure and operations as a living laboratory for applied student learning for sustainability in relation to Grounds?:
Yes

A brief description of the projects and how they contribute to understanding or advancing sustainability in relation to Grounds:

In September 2019, 126 volunteers gathered to take the first step in reviving Round Mountain, a small mountain on the west side of the CI campus. The mountain boasts a historic identity as “Sat’wiwa” (the bluffs), a sacred site where the native Chumash inhabitants gathered for the winter solstice and set up shrines to celebrate harmony, healing, forgiveness, and compassion. The centuries-old tradition died out nearly 200 years ago. CSUCI students, staff, faculty, and alumni joined with Chumash descendants and members of the Santa Monica Mountains Trails Council for the inaugural Round Mountain Day of Service. Armed with picks, rakes, and hand tools, the volunteers began clearing a path to the top of the mountain. Throughout the day, volunteers learned about Chumash history and the significance of the site. After spending the morning clearing overgrown brush from the four-foot-wide trail, volunteers returned by bus to campus to enjoy lunch and share reflections and observations. They hope to restore Sat’wiwa as a sacred Chumash shrine and, later, open the trail and mountaintop to the public as a cultural and recreational site.

CSU Channel Islands regularly offers service learning opportunities for students to work with the landscaping team to learn about integrated pest management and how to design and maintain pollinator habitats. The campus has intentionally planted a wide variety of native plants on campus grounds that are used by professors to teach students about the flora that is native to this region without having to leave campus.

Students are also participating in restoration efforts at the Santa Rosa Island Research Station in collaboration with the National Park Service.


Is the institution utilizing its infrastructure and operations as a living laboratory for applied student learning for sustainability in relation to Purchasing?:
No

A brief description of the projects and how they contribute to understanding or advancing sustainability in relation to Purchasing:
---

IIs the institution utilizing its infrastructure and operations as a living laboratory for applied student learning for sustainability in relation to Transportation?:
No

A brief description of the projects and how they contribute to understanding or advancing sustainability in relation to Transportation:
---

Is the institution utilizing its infrastructure and operations as a living laboratory for applied student learning for sustainability in relation to Waste?:
Yes

A brief description of the projects and how they contribute to understanding or advancing sustainability in relation to Waste:

In 2019, an Environmental Science and Resource Management student completed their senior capstone project on "Microplastic Fallout Abundant in Air and Rainwater". During his capstone research, the student examined the fallout of airborne microplastic in and around CSUCI's main campus and the Santa Rosa Island Research Station. The student collected air and rainwater samples on campus to study the levels of microplastics present.


Is the institution utilizing its infrastructure and operations as a living laboratory for applied student learning for sustainability in relation to Water?:
Yes

A brief description of the projects and how they contribute to understanding or advancing sustainability in relation to Water:

Many Environmental Science and Resource Management students utilize the campus to conduct research and learning relating to water issues. For example, one student completed their senior capstone project on "Microplastic Fallout Abundant in Air and Rainwater". During his capstone research, the student examined the fallout of airborne microplastic in and around CSU Channel Islands' main campus and the Santa Rosa Island Research Station. The student collected air and rainwater samples on campus to study the levels of microplastics present and the impacts on air and water quality.

In 2019, Computer Science students used the electricity and water meters at CSUCI's research station on Santa Rosa Island to build a sustainability platform to display the resource consumption on the island. The students used their computer science knowledge to develop the platform that provides accurate consumption rate data that is collected by utility meters, including electricity and propane, and uploaded to the cloud. The data is then analyzed and presented graphically on an interactive web app that can help decision makers evaluate resource consumption.
http://geraldineharms.cikeys.com/santa-rosa-island-research-station-sustainability-platform/


Is the institution utilizing its infrastructure and operations as a living laboratory for applied student learning for sustainability in relation to Coordination & Planning?:
Yes

A brief description of the projects and how they contribute to understanding or advancing sustainability in relation to Coordination & Planning:

Each year students in the Energy and Society (CHEM 344) class are required to plan and coordinate an Earth Day event. As part of this class project, the students invite other groups to table, plan for their own tables about sustainability topics, and help advertise the event to the campus and community. The CHEM 344 students spend nearly the entire semester preparing for Earth Day. The students work in groups to create educational games, activities, posters and other educational materials. They budget for and purchase sustainable prizes to hand out to student participants. In 2018, the Earth Day event attracted more than 400 participants.


Is the institution utilizing its infrastructure and operations as a living laboratory for applied student learning for sustainability in relation to Diversity & Affordability?:
Yes

A brief description of the projects and how they contribute to understanding or advancing sustainability in relation to Diversity & Affordability:

On a sunny Saturday in September 2019, 126 volunteers gathered to take the first step in reviving Round Mountain, a small mountain on the west side of the CI campus. The mountain boasts a historic identity as “Sat’wiwa” (the bluffs), a sacred site where the native Chumash inhabitants gathered for the winter solstice and set up shrines to celebrate harmony, healing, forgiveness, and compassion. The centuries-old tradition died out nearly 200 years ago. CSUCI students, staff, faculty, and alumni joined with Chumash descendants and members of the Santa Monica Mountains Trails Council for the inaugural Round Mountain Day of Service. Armed with picks, rakes, and hand tools, the volunteers began clearing a path to the top of the mountain. Throughout the day, volunteers learned about Chumash history and the significance of the site. After spending the morning clearing overgrown brush from the four-foot-wide trail, volunteers returned by bus to campus to enjoy lunch and share reflections and observations. They hope to restore Sat’wiwa as a sacred Chumash shrine and, later, open the trail and mountaintop to the public as a cultural and recreational site.


Is the institution utilizing its infrastructure and operations as a living laboratory for applied student learning for sustainability in relation to Investment & Finance?:
No

A brief description of the projects and how they contribute to understanding or advancing sustainability in relation to Investment & Finance:
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Is the institution utilizing its infrastructure and operations as a living laboratory for applied student learning for sustainability in relation to Wellbeing & Work?:
No

A brief description of the projects and how they contribute to understanding or advancing sustainability in relation to Wellbeing & Work:
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Website URL where information about the institution’s living laboratory program is available:
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Additional documentation to support the submission:
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