Overall Rating Silver
Overall Score 48.30
Liaison Laura Hamstra
Submission Date Feb. 9, 2017
Executive Letter Download

STARS v2.0

Durham College
AC-8: Campus as a Living Laboratory

Status Score Responsible Party
Complete 4.00 / 4.00 Tony Doyle
Associate Dean
Centre for Food
"---" indicates that no data was submitted for this field

Is the institution utilizing the campus as a living laboratory for multidisciplinary student learning and applied research in the following areas?:
Yes or No
Air & Climate Yes
Buildings Yes
Dining Services/Food Yes
Energy Yes
Grounds Yes
Purchasing Yes
Transportation Yes
Waste Yes
Water Yes
Coordination, Planning & Governance Yes
Diversity & Affordability Yes
Health, Wellbeing & Work Yes
Investment ---
Public Engagement Yes
Other ---

A brief description of how the institution is using the campus as a living laboratory for Air & Climate and the positive outcomes associated with the work:

The W. Galen Weston Centre for Food is Durham College's innovative response to the demands of the local culinary, hospitality, tourism, agriculture, horticultural and food science sectors. Its sustainable building, surrounding grounds and graduates serve as a beacon for innovative environmentally sustainable projects now and in the future.

The surrounding grounds were reclaimed from a large, unused clay-based field. They are now producing more than 50 different varieties of produce annually. Through the CFF, the college is raising awareness around the importance of preserving local farmlands; addressing the need for sustainable techniques and technologies to grow food in urban environments; and satisfying a desire for local food with its associated lower energy
consumption and reduced environmental impact.


A brief description of how the institution is using the campus as a living laboratory for Buildings and the positive outcomes associated with the work:

The CFF boasts numerous sustainable building features, including a glass curtain wall to maximize natural light, a Nedlaw living wall, a fully automated building controls management system and occupancy sensors. In addition, there is capacity and plans to add a green roof.


A brief description of how the institution is using the campus as a living laboratory for Dining Services/Food and the positive outcomes associated with the work:

Field to Fork vision

Field-to-fork is a concept based on the harvesting, storage, processing, packaging, sale and consumption of food – in particular the production of local food for local consumers.

Durham College has adopted this concept and applied it to a diverse range of programs that crossover traditional academic schools with the curriculum, faculty expertise and equipment required to implement field to fork built into several of the college’s programs.

The philosophy comes alive every day through a 35,000 square-foot green-certified building, 4.5 acres of reclaimed land for food production, green house, hoop house, arboretum, pollinator garden, and more. In addition, the CFF is also home to a suite of complementary post-secondary programs focused on the culinary, hospitality, tourism, agriculture and horticulture sectors.

The Green Restaurant Association has recognized the CFF’s sustainability efforts by rating it a 3 Star Certified Green Restaurant, which also applies to Bistro ’67, the full-service teaching-inspired restaurant located on the CFF’s second floor, and Pantry, a unique retail store that brings student-created goods straight from the field to the culinary classroom and on to the community.

Bistro ’67 achieved FeastON certification in 2016 for its use of more than 25 per cent of provincial food and beverages.


A brief description of how the institution is using the campus as a living laboratory for Energy and the positive outcomes associated with the work:

As part of its commitment to conserve energy and protect and improve the environment, the CFF was designed and built following the principles of Leadership in Energy and Environmental Design, an internationally accepted benchmark for the design and operation of high-performance green buildings. It also features a glass curtain wall to maximize natural light, a Nedlaw living wall, a fully automated building controls management system and occupancy sensors. Students from multiple programs tour the building to learn first-hand about its sustainable features, helping to better prepare them for employment post-graduation in a growing field – sustainable building.


A brief description of how the institution is using the campus as a living laboratory for Grounds and the positive outcomes associated with the work:

The CFF’s grounds include an apple orchard, a large urban garden, raised beds and a hoop house, where small fruits, vegetables and herbs are grown using production methods with low environmental impact, water stewardship and reduced energy consumption. In its first summer of restricted operation, the garden produced 1,260 kilograms of produce, valued conservatively at $6,000, for the college’s culinary
curriculum and Bistro ‘67. In its second year it produced 4398 kilograms and produce was used in the restaurant, Pantry, post-secondary programs and sold to the public for the first time. This fresh produce was grown and harvested by students. Other food commodities used onsite at the CFF are sourced from local producers, where feasible.

The south side of the building includes a ramped garden feature with a pollinator garden for native birds, bees and butterflies. This has proved to be a draw for elementary and secondary schools that wish to plant
pollinator gardens as part of their science curriculum. Native plants are used to provide nectar, pollen, larval food and habitat. Milkweed plants, started in the greenhouse and transplanted into the pollinator
garden, provide habitat for monarch butterflies, which are dwindling in numbers due to environmental impacts. Development of the CFF grounds will continue over the next three years. Planning for a two-acre arboretum is underway, where students will plant more than 200 species of trees, shrubs, perennials and fruit-bearing plants to provide a teaching and learning environment for students, the local agri-food industry, community organizations and the general public.


A brief description of how the institution is using the campus as a living laboratory for Purchasing and the positive outcomes associated with the work:

Bistro ’67, its full-service restaurant, which is based on the field-to-fork concept and located at its Centre for Food (CFF), has received a Feast On™ designation. Sponsored by the Ontario Culinary Tourism Alliance, Feast On is a criteria-based program that promotes restaurants and other businesses that showcase Ontario’s unique, locally produced food and beverages.
To receive a Feast On designation, restaurants must demonstrate that at least 25 per cent of their annual food and beverage receipts reflect products grown and made in Ontario, and commit to promoting locally sourced products whenever possible. The program supports the hard work of Ontario farmers and food providers by encouraging restaurants to purchase supplies from local farms, which in turn benefits local economies. Feast On member restaurants purchased more than $14 million worth of Ontario food and beverages in 2015 while helping to build the province’s reputation as a destination of choice for food lovers and educating consumers about the importance of sustainability in the food and beverage sector.


A brief description of how the institution is using the campus as a living laboratory for Transportation and the positive outcomes associated with the work:

Bicycle racks are located at the Whitby campus as well as an EV charging station, which is accessible to all Whitby campus students, including those studying at CFF.
in 2016, the college became a Smart Commute Silver Workplace in recognition of DC’s ongoing efforts to support and promote sustainable travel options for getting to and from campus. The designation was awarded by Smart Commute, a program of Metrolinx and the municipalities in the Greater Toronto and Hamilton Area. It is granted to organizations that provide and promote enhanced commuter options for its people. Using a scorecard, participating organizations are graded on their travel initiatives in categories such as programming, promotions, investments, incentives and infrastructure.


A brief description of how the institution is using the campus as a living laboratory for Waste and the positive outcomes associated with the work:

The CFF has implemented a comprehensive recycling
program to reduce its carbon footprint, including the composting of kitchen waste and
use of safer hand soaps.


A brief description of how the institution is using the campus as a living laboratory for Water and the positive outcomes associated with the work:

The Centre for Food includes an energy star dishwasher, pre-rinse sprayer, low flush toilets and touchless sensor faucets as well as a waterless urinal.


A brief description of how the institution is using the campus as a living laboratory for Coordination, Planning & Governance and the positive outcomes associated with the work:

The CFF was founded on the Field to Fork philosophy. Durham College is committed to sustainability and has implemented various mandates to ensure that sustainability is prioritized in the decision making process. The Sustainability Committee is developing a plan for the campus and is committed to community partnerships that help enhance the Living Green vision. Sustainability is considered in many of the campus processes, including facilities management, purchasing, IT, finance, research, etc.


A brief description of how the institution is using the campus as a living laboratory for Diversity & Affordability and the positive outcomes associated with the work:

The Office of Student Diversity, Inclusion and Transitions is dedicated to ensuring that Durham College students feel welcomed and supported on our vibrant campus by providing a variety diverse and comprehensive programs designed to foster both academic and social growth.

The Office of Student Diversity, Inclusion and Transitions at Durham College promotes respect, and maintains and advocates for an inclusive campus for all students regardless of race, gender, religion, gender identity or expressions, ethnic background, socio-economic class, ability or sexual orientation.

The CFF includes all gender washrooms and sexual violence awareness signage that can be found across campus.

Support is available to all students

http://www.durhamcollege.ca/services/services-for-students/office-of-student-diversity-inclusion-and-transitions


A brief description of how the institution is using the campus as a living laboratory for Health, Wellbeing & Work and the positive outcomes associated with the work:

Durham College is committed to providing opportunities to enhance the health and well being of its employees. The wellness program includes health seminars, screening clinics, newsletters, enhanced fitness programs and increased awareness of general health issues.

The wellness program was developed to meet the interests and concerns expressed by employees through the Health Risk and Productivity Assessment. The program is committed to offering Durham College employees opportunities to increase their level of awareness and activity through a variety of workshops, challenges and much more.

Wellness Program Offerings

Durham College is committed to our employees’ health and well-being. To support this, Human Resources offers programming throughout the year that focuses on nutrition, self-care, fitness and weight management.


A brief description of how the institution is using the campus as a living laboratory for Investment and the positive outcomes associated with the work:
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A brief description of how the institution is using the campus as a living laboratory for Public Engagement and the positive outcomes associated with the work:

Durham College encourages sustainable practices among students and employees by creating a unique learning environment. In particular,
in 2015, Durham Farm Connections presented the college with the Spirit of Agriculture award in recognition of its contribution to regional agriculture
and agricultural education. The award is a strong indication of the positive impact the CFF and its graduates will have on their community and
the environment for years to come. The CFF’s sustainability story will continue to unfold as it educates, nourishes and connects rural and urban
communities in Durham Region and beyond.


A brief description of how the institution is using the campus as a living laboratory in Other areas and the positive outcomes associated with the work:

The CFF is supported by ambassador and celebrity chef Jamie Kennedy,
who is one of Canada’s most critically-acclaimed chefs. Kennedy has
dedicated his incredible career to sustainable agriculture and advocacy
of the local food movement. This is a key element of the CFF, which is
designed to bring students and community members together to watch
the foods of Durham Region grow, from the planting of seeds to the
serving of food for consumption.


The website URL where information about the institution’s campus as a living laboratory program or projects is available:

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.