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

STARS v2.2

Colorado State University
EN-6: Assessing Sustainability Culture

Status Score Responsible Party
Complete 1.00 / 1.00 Kirstie Tedrick
Sustainability Coordinator
Housing & Dining Services
"---" indicates that no data was submitted for this field

Does the institution conduct an assessment of sustainability culture?:
Yes

Which of the following best describes the cultural assessment? The assessment is administered to::
The entire campus community (students and employees) directly or by representative sample

Which of the following best describes the structure of the cultural assessment? The assessment is administered::
Longitudinally to measure change over time

A brief description of how and when the cultural assessment(s) were developed and/or adopted:

The 2021 Student Sustainability Culture Assessment was a longitudinal survey distributed by ASCSU (CSU student government) Director of Environmental Affairs to a representative student population on campus. The survey is developed from previous years, with some modifications to questions based on changing sustainability information and feedback from survey respondents.

The 2021 Faculty & Staff Sustainability Cultural Assessment was a longitudinal survey developed by the President's Sustainability Commission Engagement Sub-committee using the best practices provided by STARS. It was distributed to a representative sample of Faculty & Staff across CSU, with slight modifications to some questions based on evolving sustainability information and feedback from previous surveys.

The Sustainability Cultural Assessments go out every other year with guidance from Institutional Research to a representative sample of students, faculty, and staff. The distribution of the survey takes place during the fall semester and ASCSU and the President's Sustainability Commission review results to help set priorities and goals for campus sustainability.


A copy or sample of the questions related to sustainability culture:
A sample of the questions related to sustainability culture or the website URL where the assessment tool is available:

Below are some of the questions that are asked to both students and employees:

Please respond to the statements below:
• Sustainability is important to CSU.
• Sustainability at CSU is important to me.
• I believe I have the ability to advocate for sustainable projects at CSU.
• If I have an idea or suggestion for a sustainability project at CSU, I know who to approach to see it is feasible or can help work toward implementation.
• I participate in the following sustainable practices at CSU:
a) Turning off lights in unoccupied rooms
b) Recycling
c) Composting
d) Using a reusable water bottle
e) Printing less
f) Turning up the ac and turning down the heater to minimize energy use
g) Utilizing alternative transportation
h) Participate in department or campus committee, organization, or campus event related to sustainability
i) Other: (fill in the blank)

• I would like to see CSU devote more financial resources to sustainability projects and initiatives on campus.
• What are the most important sustainability initiatives, in your opinion, that CSU should continue to invest in?
a) Require/Standardize events at CSU to be Zero-Waste Events
b) Education and research related to sustainability
c) Alternative transportation options & accessibility
d) Energy efficiency – efficient lighting/heating & cooling improvements
e) Additional education on campus composting
f) Solar and wind (renewable) electricity production
g) Accelerate efforts to reduce GHG emissions
h) Education on / improving the process of single-stream recycling and waste diversion
i) Creating a Revolving Green Fund to support sustainability infrastructure and project
j) Other ideas: __________________________

Please answer the following questions:
• Are you aware of operational / environmental sustainability initiatives on campus like Climate Action Plan, LEED buildings, and renewable electricity projects, etc.?
• Do you attend sustainability events on campus including lectures, Earth Week activities, or student presentations?
• Are you aware of available alternative transportation options to/from campus including Transfort, MAX, biking, etc.?
• Sustainability strives for a balance between the environment, the economy, and social equity. Do you feel that CSU places equal value on each aspect?
• Is it made clear that CSU operates on traditional and ancestral homelands of the Arapaho, Cheyenne and Ute Nations and Peoples?


A brief description of how representative samples were reached (if applicable) and how the cultural assessment is administered:

For the student survey, ASCSU reached out to Institutional Research, Planning and Effectiveness to receive a representative population of 1,500 students (including graduate students and undergraduate students). This list was representative of the student community here at CSU. This survey was then administered through Qualtrics to all 1,500 students during the 2021 fall semester.

For the Faculty & Staff survey, the Assistant Director of Intuitional Research provided a list of 1,400 faculty and staff at CSU, including all faculty classes, tenure track, non-tenure track, special, and part-time as well as Administrative Professional, State Classified, part-time and temporary staff. This provided us with a representative sample of this unique population on campus. The survey was then administered through Qualtrics to all 1,400 faculty and staff members during the 2021 fall semester.


A brief summary of results from the cultural assessment:

Both students and faculty continue to believe sustainability is important to CSU, 93% and 92% respectively. Notably, 98.5% of CSU students and 95% of CSU faculty say sustainability is important to them. This demonstrates a continuing trend of the CSU community recognizing the importance of sustainability to the university and for themselves. Further, in 2021 no student respondents disagreed with the statement that sustainability is important to them compared to four respondents in 2019. Fewer answered neither agree nor disagree in 2021 than in 2019 as well.

From the 2019 Assessment, there was a significant improvement regarding CSU’s Land Acknowledgment. 75.6% of students said it is clear CSU is operating on the traditional and ancestral homelands of the Arapaho, Cheyenne, and Ute Nations and Peoples, compared to 50.6% in 2019. A similar improvement occurred for faculty, with 45.5% saying it is clear, compared to 31.1% in 2019.

CSU students and employees continue to practice a variety of sustainability habits, responses were similar from 2019 to 2021. Student participation in campus sustainability organizations did increase in 2021. Employees practicing sustainable habits increased in most categories from 2019 to 2021.

From the results of this survey, there are areas in which CSU can improve. When asked their awareness of social, economic, and environmental/operational sustainability initiatives on campus, a minority of respondents for both employees and students said yes. This suggests CSU can improve communication regarding sustainability, to enable campus members more access to sustainability initiatives and greater awareness.


Website URL where information about the assessment of sustainability culture is available:
Additional documentation to support 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.