Overall Rating Silver
Overall Score 60.54
Liaison Alex Miller
Submission Date March 6, 2020
Executive Letter Download

STARS v2.1

Carleton College
EN-1: Student Educators Program

Status Score Responsible Party
Complete 4.00 / 4.00 Alexandra Miller
Sustainability Program Coordinator
Energy and Sustainability
"---" indicates that no data was submitted for this field

Number of students enrolled for credit (headcount):
2,005

Total number of students enrolled for credit that are served (i.e. directly targeted) by a student peer-to-peer sustainability outreach and education program (avoid double-counting to the extent feasible):
2,005

Percentage of students served by a peer-to-peer educator program:
100

Name of the student educators program:
Sustainability Assistant (STA) program

Number of students served (i.e. directly targeted) by the program (headcount):
2,005

A brief description of the program, including examples of peer-to-peer outreach activities:

The STA program involves between 10-13 students hired on a part-time basis to drive campus sustainability initiatives. This number has increased from 6-8 in previous years. Although the STAs work as a team, each person focuses on a particular area such as energy, waste, data management, outreach, event planning, etc. The STA program works with various departments across campus (custodial, residential life, athletics, etc.) on a series of outreach events. The STA program has also been involved in waste to increase educational signage on proper waste sorting. STAs focus on food production and procurement through involvement in the campus farm and Real Food Challenge tabulation efforts. Others focus on energy, managing data and implementing energy conservation measures such as lighting timers and occupancy sensors. STAs focused on events coordinate Climate Action Week, Earth Week, Bike to Work Week, among others. The outreach STA keeps up our website, social media platforms, and newsletter.

In September 2016, a Sustainability Program Coordinator was hired to oversee the STA program and assist with continuity of the program.

There are also three different liaison position that overlaps with the sustainability office. These include students involved in waste, food, and energy who are also responsible for student outreach and a position through the Center for Community and Civic Engagement.


A brief description of how the student educators are selected:

An application available to all students is posted each spring. Current STAs and Carleton's Manager of Campus Energy and Sustainability and Sustainability Program Coordinator review the applications and choose the strongest candidates to be interviewed. Final selections are made from that group.


A brief description of the formal training that the student educators receive to prepare them to conduct peer outreach:

STAs engage in a two-day orientation workshop during the week before fall term begins that focuses specifically on sustainability. This workshop begins with a keynote speech from a former STA or alum. Training sessions include the basics of departmental operation and organization, an overview of the Carleton energy and waste systems, a sustainability database orientation, a sustainability website training session, and and overview of the Climate Action Plan. The training sessions also include guest speakers who present on specialized skills relevant to STA responsibilities. Past topics have included effective data visualization techniques, effective grassroots organizing and activism, event planning, and communications. STA training continues throughout the year through participation in webinars and hands-on field experience working closely with Facilities, Res Life, and Dining Services. The STAs also participate in large-group training as part of a larger Peer Leader program that addresses things like diversity, positionality, and communication.


A brief description of the financial and/or administrative support the institution provides to the program (e.g. annual budget and/or faculty/staff coordination):

Alex Miller, the Sustainability Program Coordinator, is the primary coordinator and supervisor of the STA program, with the support of the Manager of Campus Energy, Martha Larson. The Carleton Custodial Manager supervises STAs focused on waste activities. Additional support, advising, and project funding is provided by the Carleton Environmental Advisory Committee (EAC), a committee that includes faculty, staff, and students. For FY19, there were 12 student staff members, each working 5-10 hours a week.


Name of the student educators program (2nd program):
Interest Houses (3)

Number of students served (i.e. directly targeted) by the program (2nd program):
30

A brief description of the program, including examples of peer-to-peer outreach activities (2nd program):

There are also three interest houses that have themes pertaining to sustainability: Carleton Association of Nature and Outdoor Enthusiasts (CANOE), Farm House, and the Wellstone House of Organizing and Activism. Residential Life works with them to manage programming for their residents on a regular basis.


A brief description of how the student educators are selected (2nd program):

Students apply to live in these houses and are selected through the housing approval process through Residential Life. Students have to show a commitment and interest in the topic of the house in order to live there. Current students living in these houses pick the incoming ones for the next year.


A brief description of the formal training that the student educators receive to prepare them to conduct peer outreach (2nd program):

The house managers are a part of Residential Life Assistant training and create their own programming for their housemates. Many events they offer are also open to the public, ie. dinner discussions.


A brief description of the financial and/or administrative support the institution provides to the program (e.g. annual budget and/or faculty/staff coordination) (2nd program):

The students who live in these houses are given a house budget and work with the paid house manager position as well as Res Life staff for support.


Name of the student educators program (3rd program):
Center for Community and Civic Engagement Fellows

Number of students served (i.e. directly targeted) by the program (3rd program):
2,005

A brief description of the program, including examples of peer-to-peer outreach activities (3rd program):

The CCCE fellows work in three issue areas: Energy and Environment and Food. The Energy and Environment Fellows work with campus organizations promoting sustainability-themed volunteer programs on and off campus. These include Clothing Connection, Arbor (working with campus arboretum), Greater Northfield Sustainability Collaborative, Bike Northfield, Zero Waste Committee, Lighten Up Garage Sale, and various transit initiatives. These programs include policy, advocacy, waste diversion, waste education, and conservation efforts. Our best example of a peer to peer program in this area is the Clothing Connection; each term the program runs a campus clothing drive and the clothes collected are offered to the campus transgender clothing swap, any clothes remaining are donated locally.

The Food Fellows work with campus organizations, local farmers, the student farm, Swipe Out Hunger, the Real Food Challenge, and the Food Recovery Network. These programs engage in education efforts across campus to educate students on the ethics of food and local food systems. Food Recovery Network (FRN) diverts edible food from our dining halls 10 times a week and delivers it to area non-profits in our community. The FRN also participates in local retail food rescue on behalf of the local food shelf. Swipe Out Hunger offers students the option to donate one of their meal swipes to another student.


A brief description of how the student educators are selected (3rd program):

Applicants to become CCCE Fellow apply in February for the upcoming academic year, a committee narrows and interviews the applicants based on their written applications and face to face interviews.


A brief description of the formal training that the student educators receive to prepare them to conduct peer outreach (3rd program):

CCCE Fellows arrive early to campus for seven days of training. Program Directors (students who coordinate individual programs) attend evening trainings and meet with CCCE Fellows regularly.

CCCE Program Directors and Fellows go through training through the general Peer Leader 10-day training before the beginning of school. This was part of the RAs and other peer leaders across campus. Positionality was a big theme throughout training, as well as working with the community of Northfield and Faribault, basics on how to reserve a room or make phone calls.


A brief description of the financial and/or administrative support the institution provides to the program (e.g. annual budget and/or faculty/staff coordination) (3rd program):

CCCE Fellows are paid student workers. This comes from the college's student work budget. There is a Program Coordinator who is a full time time staff member that supervises the Fellows and the programming in this area.
6 paid student fellows
3 paid farm interns
20 volunteer program directors


A brief description of all other student peer-to-peer sustainability outreach and education programs, including the number of students served and how student educators are selected, trained, and supported by the institution:

Carleton Food Alliance was formed in the fall of 2012 in an effort to connect food and agriculture groups on and off campus. It strives to promote health and wellbeing, food literacy, and to support the local food shed.

Empty Bowls is an international project to fight hunger, personalized by artists and art organizations on a community level. Carleton's event is held spring term in conjunction with an art department ceramics class.

Carleton Farm: Students operate a 1.5 acre farm that uses organic techniques. It boasts drip irrigation and a hoop house, among other innovations. The produce is sold to our dining halls and the profits pay summer farm interns.

The Lighten Up Garage Sale collected 46,000 pounds of materials from students as they were leaving campus for the year and sold those items in a large community garage sale. Proceeds from the sale ($36,000) benefit three local community partners.


Total number of hours student educators are engaged in peer-to-peer sustainability outreach and education activities annually (all programs):
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The website URL where information about the programs or initiatives is available:
Additional documentation to support the submission:
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All students are exposed to these programs through their required welcome orientation before their first term begins.

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.