Overall Rating Platinum
Overall Score 88.13
Liaison Tonie Miyamoto
Submission Date Nov. 7, 2022

STARS v2.2

Colorado State University
EN-3: Student Life

Status Score Responsible Party
Complete 2.00 / 2.00 Kirstie Tedrick
Sustainability Coordinator
Housing & Dining Services
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Does the institution have an active student group focused on sustainability?:

Name and a brief description of the active student groups focused on sustainability:
The SoGES Student Sustainability Center (SSC) is a University-wide, student-run organization that empowers students to advance sustainability practices and principles on and beyond CSU’s campus. The Center leads student projects, hosts topical events, distributes information, and builds relationships to promote environmental initiatives. Committed to improving sustainability at CSU and building the skill sets of students across campus, the Center empowers students to address the intersectionality of social, economic, and environmental sustainability challenges. The events, projects, and initiatives run by the Student Sustainability Center help shape the culture and practice of sustainability on campus and in our community. Students from any major on campus are invited to join the SSC Club to engage in sustainability efforts. https://sustainability.colostate.edu/centers/student-sustainability-center/ Initiatives include monthly educational workshops, implementation of the plastic bag ban, community garden development, the nitrogen footprint project, organizing sustainable fashion shows, helping install PV arrays, and free documentary showings with the City of Fort Collins. The SSC now also includes a graduate chapter. The Graduate Student Chapter of the Student Sustainability Center seeks to equip graduate students who are interested in sustainability-related careers with professional skills that are relevant in graduate school and beyond. Members will have the opportunity to attend sessions and workshops led by various sustainability professionals where they will learn skills applicable to future work as a sustainability professional. https://sustainability.colostate.edu/centers/student-sustainability-center/ Multiple additional student groups formally collaborate with SSC including the Zero Waste Team, Eco Leaders, ASCSU (student government), etc. The SSC collaborates with the Department of Design & Merchandising and CSU's Avenir Museum to run the Patchwork Initiative. This program runs clothing mending workshops and educates the CSU community on sustainable fashion habits and the global fashion industry. https://source.colostate.edu/one-thread-at-a-time-the-patchwork-initiative-aims-to-mend-the-gaps-in-clothing-sustainability/ A list of CSU's sustainability-focused or related student groups can be found here: https://green.colostate.edu/student-organizations/

Does the institution have a garden, farm, community supported agriculture (CSA) or fishery program, or an urban agriculture project where students are able to gain experience in organic agriculture and sustainable food systems?:

A brief description of the gardens, farms, community supported agriculture (CSA) or fishery programs, and/or urban agriculture projects:
The department of Horticulture and Soil & Crop Sciences maintains several on-campus (and off-campus) gardens and farms, which are used for student learning, research, and student-led gardening projects. This is all part of the certified organic research that has been occurring on campus for 17 years. The Interdisciplinary Studies Program in Organic Agriculture at Colorado State University provides a unique opportunity to study the science of organic production. These gardens are open to students throughout the entire university through course credits and volunteering. These gardens also include a space set aside for students living in the Aggie Village Apartments located on campus where they can grow and maintain produce for the Freedge, a refrigerator with no-cost produce available to those in the campus community who are experiencing food insecurity. https://agsci.colostate.edu/department/soil-and-crop-sciences/ The CSU Horticulture Center also offers a hands-on opportunity for students to participate in farm-to-table (or farm-to-glass) practicum programs through the on-campus grown foods partnership with Housing & Dining Services, the hops partnership with the Fermentation Science program, and various other collaborative and research projects. The Growing Food Security program at the CSU Agricultural Research, Development, and Education Center (ARDEC) is a student-run farm food security initiative that provides thousands of pounds of fresh produce to the campus food pantry and local food security programs. https://magazine.csusystem.edu/2021/03/15/growing-food-security/

Does the institution have a student-run enterprise that includes sustainability as part of its mission statement or stated purpose?:

A brief description of the student-run enterprises:
The Aspen Grille is a student-run restaurant located in the Lory Student Center in partnership with the Hospitality Management Program. The Aspen Grille is open to the public for lunch Tuesday through Friday during the academic year. The Grille is a member of the Green Restaurant Association and focuses on local/sustainable food sources. The Aspen Grille proudly offers local products such as Hazel Dell Mushrooms, Jumping Good Goat Cheese, Bay State Milling Flour, Bee Squared Honey, Haugen’s Mountain Grown Lamb, Continental Bacon, and “socially conscious” coffee roasted by Cafe Richesse, a Colorado State University Alumnus-owned company. The Aspen Grille participates in the CSU composting program to divert all food waste. Students in the Hospitality Management Program earn course-credit while managing all aspects of the Grille. https://lsc.colostate.edu/dining/aspen-grille/

Does the institution have a sustainable investment fund, green revolving fund, or sustainable microfinance initiative through which students can develop socially, environmentally and fiscally responsible investment and financial skills?:

A brief description of the sustainable investment funds, green revolving funds or sustainable microfinance initiatives:
The Summit Fund's goal is to enrich students' educational experience by bridging academic coursework with professional experience in managing an actual investment fund. By collaborating with peers, students learn cooperative strategies for investment while also gaining critical communication skills. The students who run the fund each semester are charged with achieving the highest return possible while investing in sustainable and socially-conscious investments. The Summit Fund student managers meet with the CSU Foundation Board each year to share their success and make recommendations on socially-conscious investing. https://ramsfinance.weebly.com/summit-fund.html

Has the institution hosted a conference, speaker series, symposium, or similar event focused on sustainability during the previous three years that had students as the intended audience?:

A brief description of the conferences, speaker series, symposia, or similar events focused on sustainability:
CSU hosts a large number of events and speakers related to sustainability throughout the year. The largest is the annual Earth Month celebration which includes campus-wide participation and events such as the Earth Day Festival, keynote speakers, compost giveaway, electronic-waste collection, student research showcases, etc. Earth Month events are typically free and open to the community. In 2022, each week of the month-long celebration had a theme including energy, mobility, sustainability at CSU, water, and food justice. There are also lectures on sustainability issues and symposiums that highlight both undergrad and graduate student research related to sustainability. https://green.colostate.edu/earth-month/ CSU hosts the annual Symposium for Inclusive Excellence, formerly known as the Diversity Symposium, a multi-day speaker and workshop series for the whole campus community. Topics ranging from healthcare inequities to environmental justice to navigating queer identities on campus to racism within academia are explored with keynote speakers, campus groups, and CSU faculty or staff presentations. The 2021 Keynote speakers were Yavilah McCoy, discussing the intersections of race, religion, and identity particularly for Jewish people of color; and Mahzarin Banaji discussing implicit biases. CSU faculty presented on the importance of diverse voices in the climate crisis, gender in higher education, and more. Winners of the 2021 Multicultural Undergraduate Research, Art, and Leadership Symposium (MURALS) presented their work on the final day of the Symposium. https://inclusiveexcellence.colostate.edu/symposium https://source.colostate.edu/murals-symposium-winners-showcase-scholarly-creative-work/ CSU's Office of International Program hosts a Global Engagement Distinguished Speaker lecture series throughout the year that is free and open to the public. Virtual formatting increases accessibility for students and the campus community to attend. Notable activists, leaders, and speakers from around the world deliver lectures about various topics of justice, equality, and development. In March of 2021, Reverend Nontombi Naomi Tutu, the daughter of Archbishop Desmond Tutu, spoke about race and gender justice. In March of 2022, President Ellen Johnson Sirleaf, Liberia's first female president and Nobel Peace Prize winner, spoke about women empowerment, justice and peace in international communities. CSU's Graduate Degree Program in Ecology, the Department of Ecosystem Science & Sustainability, and the Department of Forest & Rangeland Stewardship host seminar series intended for students and faculty throughout the academic year. Speakers may be CSU faculty or visiting from other universities, discussing their work in the field of ecosystem science and sustainability. In March of 2022, Dr. Fayola Jacobs from the University of Minnesota visited to share their work with a seminar titled "Black Feminisms and Black Geographies: The Possibilities for Climate Justice Research." Other speaker topics this semester ranged from net zero, plant death in the Anthropocene, biocultural resilience through embracing history and sacredness, and cultivating climate resilience through citizen science. https://warnercnr.colostate.edu/ess/ess-events/ess-seminar-archive/ Throughout the year, the School of Global Environmental Sustainability offers symposia, lectures, panels, and workshops for students at no cost. One such panel is the Managing the Planet Series. Panels consist of CSU professors in a variety of disciplines to discuss issues surrounding sustainability. All events are free and open to the public, intended to engage the community with sustainability and connect students with CSU professionals in their interest areas.

Has the institution hosted a cultural arts event, installation, or performance focused on sustainability with the previous three years that had students as the intended audience?:

A brief description of the cultural arts events, installations, or performances focused on sustainability:
The Student Sustainability Center, as well as the School of Global Environmental Sustainability, host a variety of cultural events throughout the year for students. The annual ACT Human Rights Film festival hosts a number of films from around the world showcasing different aspects of human rights and sustainability. A few of the 2022 films topics include: famine in Yemen, navigating queer identity in childhood, Aboriginal culture and social justice movements, and more. Tickets for this year had a pay what you can option for individual film tickets to allow more community members and students to participate. As part of the 2022 Earth Month celebration, CSU's Gregory Allicar Museum of Art hosted an artist talk with Mary Mattingly to unveil a new piece titled "Post-Fossil Fuel Food Map (2021)" in the "Reclamation: Recovering Our Relationship with Place" exhibit. This talk was a collaboration between the Allicar Museum and the CSU Powerhouse Energy Campus. This piece depicts some of the challenge faced in urban environments to live sustainably, particularly with a globalized food system. Mattingly focuses on the role of food systems in climate change as well regenerative agriculture practices and local food systems. The event was free and promoted across campus during Earth Month to start dialogues with students about food systems, and sustainable lifestyles. https://artmuseum.colostate.edu/events/mary-mattingly-artist-talk/

Does the institution have a wilderness or outdoors program that follow Leave No Trace principles?:

A brief description of the wilderness or outdoors programs that follow Leave No Trace principles:
The Outdoor Program through Campus Recreation offers a variety of outdoor activities which emphasize safe and low impact practices. The literature on Leave No Trace and other environmental principles is available in seminars and via pamphlets at the Recreational Center Office. https://csurec.colostate.edu/outdoor-program/ The CSU Mountain Campus is a truly unique experience where students experience nature in a remote mountain setting. The Mountain Campus offers a challenge course, world-class hiking adjacent to Rocky Mountain National Park, excellent fishing, wildlife viewing, classrooms, dormitories, and a dining hall. All incoming first year students are invited to take part in the Mountain Campus Experience to visit as part of the Orientation program. Students can also take courses at the Mountain Campus to study tree identification, fire ecology, map and compass use, geology, life zones, and ecosystem interaction. Students learn through instruction and activity; exploring climate change through hikes, watershed research, etc. Leave No Trace is a founding principle of the mountain campus experience. https://mountaincampus.colostate.edu/

Has the institution had a sustainability-focused theme chosen for a themed semester, year, or first-year experience during the previous three years?:

A brief description of the sustainability-focused themes chosen for themed semesters, years, or first-year experiences:
For the 2022 - 2023 academic year the chosen theme is Health, focusing specifically on animal health, human physical and mental health and public health, with an emphasis on health disparities. The campus community will have the opportunity to engage with this topic in a variety of ways. Rams Read will be a feature of this year's programming, with the selected book being "What the Eyes Don't See: a Story of Crisis, Resistance, and Hope in an American City" by Mona Hanna-Attisha. A pediatrician in Michigan, Dr. Mona Hanna-Attisha recounts her role in exposing the Flint water crisis and the roles of parents and activists. Dr. Hanna-Attisha will visit CSU in the fall to discuss with the campus community. All incoming students will be able to receive a free copy during Orientation or Ram Welcome. https://source.colostate.edu/inaugural-thematic-year-at-csu-to-focus-on-health-in-2022-23-with-what-the-eyes-dont-see-as-rams-read-book/ In 2020, CSU began Rams Read, a university-wide program with a book chosen each academic year. Students and the whole campus community are invited to engage with the book and peer discussions. The first selection for Rams Read was "Citizen: An American Lyric" by Claudia Rankine, a collection of poetry exploring racial dynamics in the U.S. In 2021, the chosen book was "The Color of Food: Stories of Race, Resilience and Farming" by Natasha Bowen, an essay collection of 75 farmers of color in the U.S. discussing the intersections of race, food justice, and agriculture. All first year students were provided with the book upon their arrival to campus. Natasha Bowens Blair delivered a keynote address on food justice to CSU students, staff, and faculty in October, 2021. https://ramsread.colostate.edu/about-rams-read/

Does the institution have a program through which students can learn sustainable life skills?:

A brief description of the programs through which students can learn sustainable life skills:
Eco Actions is a six-week student engagement campaign designed to educate students living on campus about sustainable life choices. Students participate by pledging to sustainable life choices through a website and can choose between planting trees or receiving sustainable prizes as an incentive for their commitments. 915 students or 15% of the on-campus student population participated in 2021 by committing to some form of sustainable life choices. A follow-up survey found 95% of students who participated continued their pledged behaviors long term. CSU runs sustainable living workshops through Housing & Dining Services each year. They also provide four model residence hall rooms, each in a different hall, which are open to students and visitors year-round. Model rooms are almost completely furnished with reused items from a previous student move-out event, and tours emphasize green living on campus including alternative transportation options, energy and water efficiency, and ways to reduce waste. Additionally, there is an interactive model green room which students can tour online. https://housing.colostate.edu/about/sustainability/living-green-guide/ There is also the Natural Resources and Sustainability Leadership Residential Learning Community in Summit Hall open for any student to engage in the research and outreach of the Warner College of Natural Resources. Students who apply for the community collectively register for a first year seminar class on sustainability and agree to participate in an Alternative Spring Break in the local National Parks. Additional events are also organized throughout the semester. Students are encouraged to engage in a wide range of sustainability activities and opportunities on campus.

Does the institution offer sustainability-focused student employment opportunities?:

A brief description of the sustainability-focused student employment opportunities offered by the institution:
The School of Global Environmental Sustainability keeps an active listing of student and professional sustainability positions on its website. The weekly Student Sustainability Center (SSC) bulletin also includes a sustainability job listing. This listing includes paid jobs, internships, and volunteer opportunities both on and off-campus. RAMweb, the CSU student portal, also provides a full listing of all student positions open on campus, including sustainability positions. Sustainability-focused student employment opportunities are provided across campus. Just a few examples include the Eco Leaders program, Ram Ambassadors, The Spoke Mechanics, and sustainability internships in Parking & Transportation Services, Facilities Management, Housing & Dining Services, President's Sustainability Commission, Composting Living Lab, and the Horticulture program internships.

Does the institution have a graduation pledge through which students pledge to consider social and environmental responsibility in future job and other decisions?:

A brief description of the graduation pledge(s):

A brief description of other co-curricular sustainability programs and initiatives that do not fall into one of the above categories:
The campus SLiCE (Student Leadership, Involvement, and Community Engagement) office provides a number of co-curricular sustainability related programs and initiatives including alternative breaks, service learning, and coordinated community volunteering. Sustainability options exist in each of these categories. The Eco Leaders program also has a strong co-curricular sustainability model as do the three sustainability-related Residential Learning Communities in the residence halls.

Additional documentation to support the submission:

Data source(s) and notes about the submission:

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.