Overall Rating Gold - expired
Overall Score 67.05
Liaison Jessica Krejcik
Submission Date May 26, 2017
Executive Letter Download

STARS v2.0

Concordia University
EN-9: Community Partnerships

Status Score Responsible Party
Complete 3.00 / 3.00 Charmaine Lyn
Senior Director
Office of Community Engagement
"---" indicates that no data was submitted for this field

Does the institution have at least one formal sustainability partnership with the local community that meets the criteria as “supportive”?:

A brief description of the institution’s supportive sustainability partnership(s) with the local community:

Does the institution have at least one formal sustainability partnership with the local community that meets the criteria as “collaborative”?:

A brief description of the institution's collaborative sustainability partnership(s):

Does the institution have at least one formal sustainability partnership with the local community that meets the criteria as “transformative”?:

A brief description of the institution's transformative sustainability partnership(s) with the local community:

RacineCarrée ("Square Roots")

RacineCarrée is an impact-oriented project-based experiential learning hub. Building off of partnerships between Concordia University and Montreal-area schools, RacineCarrée brings together university and primary school students to design and implement real-world solutions for existing needs in the local community. Our program is rooted in five of the University’s strategic directions – teach for tomorrow, get your hands dirty, mix it up, embrace the city and go beyond.Originally born out of a class project in a graduate level engineering course, the ideas behind RacineCarrée were further developed at District 3, Concordia’s start-up incubator. Then, in the spring of 2015, thanks to a partnership with Adopt a School, RacineCarrées’s impact-oriented experiential learning program came to life with an initial project at École Martin Bélanger. Now housed in Concordia’ Office of Community Engagement for a pilot year, RacineCarrée is looking to build off of it’s initial success, expand it’s impact through new partnerships and continually refine it’s programming to best respond to community needs.

The program’s core objectives are:
• Increase Graduation Rates: Through our partnership with Adopt a School, RacineCarrée seeks to address the social, economic and geographic barriers that contribute to Quebec’s low graduation rate. In a hands-on way, our program gives young students a fun introduction to business, engineering and design, just as their academic interests are beginning to form.
• Respond to Community Needs: Through our programming we seek to build our collective problem-solving capacity, to foster multi-disciplinary collaboration and to develop sustainable solutions for community-identified challenges. The issues our projects address may be found within the school itself or in the surrounding neighbourhood.
• Create Hands-on Learning Opportunities: RacineCarrée gives Concordia students the opportunity to get out of the classroom, to better understand emerging local needs and to partner with community members to develop and implement sustainable solutions. Connecting theoretical knowledge with real-world experience helps to foster values of active-citizenship and community engagement in the leaders of tomorrow.

RacineCarrée projects vary depending on schools we partner with and the community identified needs and evolve organically from their local realities.

École Martin-Bélanger (2014-2015)
RacineCarree partnered with École Martin-Bélanger, located in Lachine to develop an engaging environmental learning project given that the school was located in a neighbourhood where access to affordable healthy food alternatives was scarce. With our goal of both inspiring and empowering the young students, they were involved in every step of the planning, design, implementation and ownership of the project.

Through a number of planned workshops, the young students designed their indoor garden. RacineCarree brought together engineers, gardeners and designers to assist them in the detailed paper plans and Concordia students constructed the garden which is now used by GRAME-ECO-quartier, Lachine, to conduct harvesting workshops. In a continued shared effort to sustain this connection between traditional academic curriculum (science, math and geography) and the environment, École Martin-Bélanger students will continue to work with our university students and members of the community in designing a business model, making improvements to their existing model, working on a coldframe (small outdoor greenhouse) and, ultimately, an outdoor greenhouse.

RacineCarree has several other schools it is partnering with, although its not always going to be about building greenhouses as it will depend on the school and neighbourhood’s greatest need.

A brief description of the institution’s sustainability partnerships with distant (i.e. non-local) communities:

The website URL where information about sustainability partnerships is available:

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.