Overall Rating Expired
Overall Score Expired
Liaison Ciannat Howett
Submission Date July 25, 2014
Executive Letter Download

STARS v2.0

Emory University
EN-3: Student Life

Status Score Responsible Party
Complete Expired Emily Cumbie-Drake
Sustainability Programs Coordinator
Office of Sustainability Initiatives
"---" indicates that no data was submitted for this field

Does the institution have one or more co-curricular sustainability programs and initiatives that fall into the following categories?:
Yes or No
Active student groups focused on sustainability Yes
Gardens, farms, community supported agriculture (CSA) or fishery programs, or urban agriculture projects where students are able to gain experience in organic agriculture and sustainable food systems Yes
Student-run enterprises that include sustainability as part of their mission statements or stated purposes Yes
Sustainable investment funds, green revolving funds or sustainable microfinance initiatives through which students can develop socially, environmentally and fiscally responsible investment and financial skills Yes
Conferences, speaker series, symposia or similar events related to sustainability that have students as the intended audience Yes
Cultural arts events, installations or performances related to sustainability that have students as the intended audience Yes
Wilderness or outdoors programs that follow Leave No Trace principles Yes
Sustainability-related themes chosen for themed semesters, years, or first-year experiences Yes
Programs through which students can learn sustainable life skills Yes
Sustainability-focused student employment opportunities offered by the institution Yes
Graduation pledges through which students pledge to consider social and environmental responsibility in future job and other decisions Yes
Other co-curricular sustainability programs and initiatives Yes

The name and a brief description of each student group focused on sustainability:

Emory has a number of student organizations that work on issues related to sustainability.

Student Sustainability Forum
Emory's Student Sustainability Forum is a group of student leaders from sustainability-related organizations. Members of the Forum are from Emory College and the professional schools. The forum meets biweekly so student sustainability leaders can share experiences of their efforts in working towards a more sustainable Emory. Within these informal dialogues, students learn about the exciting work of fellow groups. The Forum is also a chance for organizations to find intersections in missions where they can collaborate.

Emory Environmental Alliance
Emory Environmental Alliance (EEA) is a student led undergraduate environmental organization that works with Emory and the Office of Sustainability Initiatives to affect institutional change. Club members initiate projects, organize events, and educate fellow students. Projects aim to encompass both social and environmental issues.

Slow Food Emory
Slow Food Emory is a campus chapter of an international movement to promote good, clean, and fair food. These three simple words represent multiple dimensions of food, including sustainable agriculture, preserving biodiversity, producing food without the use of harmful chemicals, ensuring a fair wage for producers and laborers, and allowing equal access to this food that we cherish. Slow Food Emory works to promote these values on campus through eating and cooking together, discussing food access and production issues, educating peers to think critically about their food and its origins, and other activities that reconnect us with the pleasure of eating and the unquantifiable value of food.

Rollins Environmental Health Action Committee (REHAC)
REHAC's mission is to encourage students to make environmentally friendly decisions in their daily lives and raise awareness about environmental justice issues in our community and around the world. REHAC provides free fair trade coffee every week to students who bring their own mug to school, hosts fundraisers for natural disaster relief efforts, encourages students to use alternative transportation, hosts socials to talk about environmental issues, and participate in art projects to decorate stairwells to encourage students, staff and faculty to take the stairs. REHAC also screens films on environmental issues and volunteers with alternative transit organizations and environmental justice organizations.

Global HEED
Global HEED (Global Health, Education, and Economic Development) is the Emory chapter of the eponymous non-profit. Global HEED seeks to foster the development of servant-leaders and social entrepreneurs in order to empower and engage communities to holistically address their issues and concerns. They act locally and internationally to promote sustainable development that is both environmentally conscious and comprehensive. During the school year, Global HEED collaborates with local non-profits to help address issues related to health, education, and economic development. They also provide students the opportunity to network with professionals pursuing similar interests. During the summer, members have the opportunity to participate in the Global HEED Healthcare Fellowship in Guatemala.

RHA Sustainability Representatives
The Residence Hall Association (RHA) works to promote the goals and purposes of the University as related to residential living, as well as to serve as the student voice. RHA works to promote Emory's sustainability initiatives and programs through several mediums. The Executive Council Sustainability Chairs develop campus-wide efforts that are both interactive and informative. Each individual residence hall has its own RHA Sustainability Chair as well, whose job it is to develop his or her own green initiative and support the Executive Chairs. This structure allows RHA to reach all Emory students in an efficient manner and spread sustainability efforts campus-wide.

Outdoor Emory Organization
The Outdoor Emory Organization (OEO), which annually retains a membership of 350 or more students, is Emory’s largest student-run organization and is one of the largest and most active university outdoors organizations in the country. OEO operates in line with Leave No Trace and includes this practice in the curriculum used to train trip leaders. The group organizes a number of weekend trips around the Southeast including whitewater rafting, hiking, rock climbing, and skydiving. The trips are subsidized by money from the Student Government Association (SGA) to increase their affordability for Emory students. Every year, OEO leads three-day Student Outdoor Adventure Retreat (SOAR) trips for incoming students, which take place before students move in and begin orientation and give incoming students the opportunity to meet other new faces and learn about Emory from upperclassman while sleeping under the stars, rafting down a river, climbing rocks, or riding horses through the countryside.​

Generation Response
Generation Response is Emory's environmental/humanitarian magazine. Generation Response gives Emory students a voice on local, national, and international humanitarian and environmental issues. Writers shed light on the people and organizations at Emory and in the greater Atlanta area that are making a positive difference in response to issues. In doing so, the students hope to connect Emory to Atlanta and act as a sort of mutualistic sustainable forum, in which we give sustainable Atlanta organizations publicity to the Emory community and in turn Emory students can seek out these organizations to get involved. The ultimate goal of Generation Response is to encourage Emory students to get involved in making a positive difference in the world. It's about reaching out, so that this generation can respond and take responsibility for our future.

Green Bean Coffee
The Green Bean is a student-run coffee business committed to nurturing the community and environment while maintaining a practical and profitable business. Student employees are involved in the evolution of business practices and provide a fuel of creativity. The Green Bean aims to be a long-lasting and community-friendly campus resource, both for great tasting coffee and tea, and for sustainability education. The Green Bean sells coffee from Cafe Campesino, a fair trade and organic coffee roaster in Americus, Georgia, as well as products from other local suppliers, including Atlanta Fresh grass-fed yogurt. The Green Bean is located inside Cox Hall Food Court. The Green Bean was started from an Incentives Grant issued by the Office of Sustainability Initiatives.

Net Impact
Net Impact is an international nonprofit organization with a mission to inspire, educate, and equip individuals to use the power of business to create a more socially and environmentally sustainable world. Net Impact members are current and emerging leaders in corporate social responsibility, social entrepreneurship, nonprofit management, international development, and environmental sustainability who are actively improving the world.

Greeks Go Green
Greeks Go Green helps promote sustainability initiatives within Fraternity and Sorority Life and around campus.

Emory Undergraduate Global Health Organization
EUGHO (Emory Undergraduate Global Health Organization) serves to provide information and opportunities for student action concerning international health issues. EUGHO tries to enlighten students on graduate opportunities in the field of global health that reach beyond the obvious public health school options. EUGHO participates in volunteer opportunities both on and off campus with EGHO, Emory's graduate school global health organization. These activities include Quilt on the Quad, World AIDS day, Medshare International, health walks, and educational trips to the CDC and the Carter Center.

Emory Global Health Organization
The Emory Global Health Organization is a student organization based at Emory's Rollins School of Public Health (RSPH). The group seeks to engage in issues of global health outside the classroom by organizing community service events, advocacy campaigns and networking opportunities. Membership is open to the entire Emory University student body, as well as faculty, staff and alumni.

Environmental Law Society
The Environmental Law Society seeks to provide information and to take an active role in the legal dimensions of environmental interests. The group participates in hikes, hosts a Sustainability Week and occasionally invites speakers.

Volunteer Emory
Volunteer Emory's (VE) mission is to collaborate with agents of change for service projects and social justice work that promote learning about self and society. VE runs several weekly sustainability-related service trips in Atlanta, including to Trees Atlanta, local community gardens, and re:Loom, a local non-profit organization that employs recently homeless community members and trains them how to weave upcycled materials into beautiful rugs, scarves, and other products. VE also has large-scale service days in the fall semester (Emory Cares Day) and on Martin Luther King Day. Past trips have included tree plantings with Trees Atlanta and streambank restoration in Lullwater Preserve on Emory's campus, among others. Additionally, VE runs Alternative Fall & Spring Breaks which expose students to issues such as food production/consumption/security, community building/home security, homelessness, hunger, and poverty through service learning.

Graduate Sustainability Group
The Graduate Sustainability Group (GSG) group is a student-led response to the important social and environmental challenges facing the world as a whole and those specific to our local community, namely that of Emory University and greater Atlanta area. GSG recognizes that engaging graduate students in sustainability on both the academic and practical levels opens up important opportunities for scholarship and for incubating the next generation of leaders in social and environmental sustainability. In an effort to foster engagement with sustainability, with all of its challenges and opportunities in a spirit of commitment, rigor, and community, GSG provides opportunities for Emory University students, faculty, and staff to meet and discuss sustainability issues and topics and their relation to issues of both theory and practice on and off the Emory campus. The organization seeks to create an intellectual and, at times, physical space for support, reflection, critique and practical action with regards to our common social and environmental concerns.

Campus Kitchens Emory
Campus Kitchens Emory (CKE) is a new student-run organization at Emory that is developing plans to repurpose and donate unused food to local kitchens and food pantries. In Spring 2014, CKE piloted their donation program and collected and donated several hundred pounds of food. A full launch will begin in Fall 2014. This group is a branch of the national Campus Kitchens organization which operates on multiple campuses across the nation. CKE's mission is to fight hunger in Atlanta through sustainable food waste management while simultaneously fostering an awareness of our consumption and our role in sustainable practices. Campus Kitchens Emory engages students from various groups and organizations in volunteer work that benefits the campus as a whole, fostering community development both at Emory and in Atlanta.

Oxford Sustainability Club
Oxford College’s Sustainability Club is the Oxford campus’ primary source of environmentally friendly programming. The club combines service and education in a social setting to make sustainable concepts more accessible. Members and non-members alike apply the lessons from these events to their day-to-day lives. This helps promote a lasting culture of environmental responsibility at Oxford.

Candler School of Theology Creation Keepers
The Candler Creation Keepers offers community for students who want to explore their devotion to God as expressed through Creation care. They are responsible for maintaining Candler's Educational Garden and meet regularly to tend it. They also plan and lead several events as part of Emory's Earth Month celebrations, including outdoor worship services, a preaching pageant, and an alternative transportation breakfast that aims to provide sustainably grown and justly traded coffee and food for students who get to Emory via bike, bus, car-pool, or any means alternative to single-passenger car. They enjoy fellowship over meals made from locally produced foods, and work to promote greater ecological awareness at Candler and in our local congregations.


The website URL where information about student groups is available:
A brief description of gardens, farms, community supported agriculture (CSA) or fishery programs, and urban agriculture projects where students are able to gain experience in organic agriculture and sustainable food systems:

The Emory Sustainability Vision set a goal to "include community gardens in the university landscape plan for aesthetic and educational purposes." Currently, Emory has five active small educational food gardens on campus that highlight sustainability and food, including one garden on the Oxford campus. These food gardens are maintained by a team of staff, students, neighbors, and faculty, and harvests are shared within each team. All of the gardens are managed using organic gardening techniques.
Emory’s educational gardens are part of a growing sense of what it means to live sustainably, including:
-Increasing awareness of local food and education about what food crops look like and how they grow.
-Reminding passersby that eating locally reduces fossil fuel use and addresses global warming.
-Offering locales of respite and stillness, spaces to withdraw from the ordinary round of academic life.
-Fostering an awareness of seasons and the bioregion of which we are a part.
-Offering meaningful work that increases attachment to place.
-Educating about ethnic traditions and crops from around the world.
The Educational Gardens are governed by teams of faculty, staff, and students.

Additionally, Oxford College has recently hired a farm manager to run an organic farm across the street from Oxford's campus. Slated to be in full operation by fall 2014, the farm will be used to grow food for the dining hall and community, model the use of sustainable farming techniques to support the local community and to provide education and training opportunities for our students on the issues of sustainability. The farm will produce a diversity of vegetables, as well as orchard fruit, cut flowers and shitake mushrooms grown on hardwood logs. Lessons from the farm will be incorporated into the classroom curriculum. Faculty from across Oxford will be invited to use the farm as a resource in their teaching. The Oxford farm is not student-governed.


The website URL where information about the organic agriculture and/or sustainable food systems projects and initiatives is available:
A brief description of student-run enterprises that include sustainability as part of their mission statements or stated purposes:

The Green Bean is a student-run coffee business committed to nurturing the community and environment while maintaining a practical and profitable business. Student employees are involved in the evolution of business practices and provide a fuel of creativity. The Green Bean aims to be a long-lasting and community-friendly campus resource, both for great tasting coffee and tea, and for sustainability education. The Green Bean sells coffee from Cafe Campesino, a fair trade and organic coffee roaster in Americus, Georgia, as well as products from other local suppliers, including Atlanta Fresh grass-fed yogurt. The Green Bean is located inside Cox Hall Food Court. The Green Bean was started from an Incentives Grant issued by the Office of Sustainability Initiatives.


The website URL where information about the student-run enterprise(s) is available:
A brief description of the sustainable investment or finance initiatives:

Student Environmental Fund
The Student Environmental Fund was created out of a campaign during the fall of 2008 to establish a green fee at Emory University. This campaign was started by Emory's Student Government Association with help from the Emory Environmental Alliance. Emory's Student Government Association (SGA) created a survey during this time that was distributed to the whole student body to gauge support for a green fee. Nearly 2,000 Emory students from across the University participated in taking the survey. Through it, the majority of Emory students indicated that they would be personally willing to give extra money with tuition to increase sustainability at Emory; however, the majority also opposed a new mandatory fee outright for every student. Thus, SGA leaders and campus administration responded by creating the Emory Student Environmental Fund. Money raised by the Student Environmental Fund is appropriated by a committee of students advised by the Director of Sustainability Initiatives. Student Environmental Fund money may be appropriated at the committee's discretion to any project from one of the following three categories:
(1) The purchase of or investment in clean renewable energy in the Southeastern United States;
(2) Student driven projects or services that produce measurable benefits to the environment;
(3) Student Government Association Revolving Green Fund* projects.
Student Environmental Fund projects must demonstrate that they are above and beyond those things Emory is already doing to preserve the environment, and thus, donations will not be offset by reduced spending on environmental preservation by other parts of the university.


The website URL where information about the sustainable investment or finance initiatives is available:
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A brief description of conferences, speaker series, symposia or similar events related to sustainability that have students as the intended audience:

Emory annually participates in Campus Sustainability Day (October), Arbor Day Celebration and Tree Planting (February and/or April) and Earth Day (April), all of which typically feature many events on campus.

Each fall, students in a 1-credit anthropology course put on a Sustainable Food Fair, in collaboration with the Office of Sustainability Initiatives and Emory Dining. This lively midday event features music and roughly 40 stands of locally grown fresh food for sale, chefs offering delectable samples, stores featuring sustainably grown foods and other products, and nonprofits in the Emory area that are part of the sustainable food movement. 2013 was

Green Networking Night, hosted annually by the Career Center and Office of Sustainability, brings over 50 representatives of environmental organizations in Atlanta to network with Emory students.

Emory’s Sustainable Food Initiative and the Emory Farmer’s Market regularly host events to educate Emory students and community members about sustainable food. Events in 2013 included the “Berry Bash" highlighting local blueberries, "Tomato Centric" with a tomato tasting, "Favorite Flavors of Summer", "Ice Cream Social" with a local ice cream producer, and "Pumpkin Fest” with local pumpkins.

In addition, as opportunities arise, the Office of Sustainability hosts lectures and seminars for students and the general public. For example, in 2013, the Office of Sustainability brought Amory Lovins, cofounder of the Rocky Mountain Institute, to campus for a free lecture and partnered with a school of pubilc health student group to host Bridget Luther, President at Cradle to Cradle Products Innovation Institute, for a free lunchtime lecture.

A list of sustainability-related events can be found on the Office of Sustainability Initiatives website.


The website URL where information about the event(s) is available:
A brief description of cultural arts events, installations or performances related to sustainability that have students as the intended audience:

In spring 2012, the Center for Creativity & Arts along with the Center for Women at Emory celebrated March's Women's History Month with the "Women and Water" performance and lecture series, examining how lives of women across the world intersect with water. This series included:
• "Women, Water, and Microfinance: Agents of Global Empowerment," a talk by April Rinne, director of WaterCredit, who discussed the relationship between women and water within the framework of gender relations and state policy
• "Women and Water: Empowering Women to Create a Sustainable Future," a talk by national environmental advocate and eco-living expert Laura Turner Seydel who discussed the impact of women's rights on environmental conservation and global access to safe water
• Rollins School of Public Health presented "Constructive interference: A dialogue on sanitation and health through inquiry and art," an interdisciplinary exploration of the impact of safe sanitation on human health
• Environmental artist John Grade returned to Emory’s campus to speak about his body of work as well as the experience of creating "Piedmont Divide," a two-part sculptural installation using recycled materials mounted on Emory's campus during the previous fall

In addition, each year, the Office of Multicultural Programs and Services (OMPS) hosts a 'Trashion Show' as part of their 'Unity Month.' Participants use recycled goods to make articles of clothing and groups create dance routines to showcase their fashions. In fall 2013, attendees were encouraged to bring unwanted textiles to donate to a local non-profit, re:Loom, which provides employment to homeless or recently homeless individuals by training them to weave upcycled materials into rugs, scarves, and other products.


The website URL where information about the cultural arts event(s) is available:
A brief description of wilderness or outdoors programs for students that follow Leave No Trace principles:

The Outdoor Emory Organization (OEO), which annually retains a membership of 350 or more students, is Emory’s largest student-run organization and is one of the largest and most active university outdoors organizations in the country. OEO operates in line with Leave No Trace and includes this practice in the curriculum used to train trip leaders. The group organizes a number of weekend trips around the Southeast including whitewater rafting, hiking, rock climbing, and skydiving. The trips are subsidized by money from the Student Government Association (SGA) to increase their affordability for Emory students. Every year, OEO leads three-day Student Outdoor Adventure Retreat (SOAR) trips for incoming students, which take place before students move in and begin orientation and give incoming students the opportunity to meet other new faces and learn about Emory from upperclassman while sleeping under the stars, rafting down a river, climbing rocks, or riding horses through the countryside.​


The website URL where information about the wilderness or outdoors program(s) is available:
A brief description of sustainability-related themes chosen for themed semesters, years, or first-year experiences:

First year students at Emory have the opportunity to participate in the Living-Learning Communities as part of Emory’s First Year at Emory experience, run by the Office of Residence Life and Housing. There are six Living-Learning Communities: "Citizenship: Your Passport to Emory", "Living Green: Sustainability in the 21st Century", "Global Cultures: Bringing the World to Emory", "Leadership at Emory", "Creativity & Innovation", and “Social Entrepreneurship: Inspire, Ignite, Impact”. While the "Living Green" program is the one most directly focused on sustainability, each of these experiences incorporates aspects of sustainability, equity, and social justice into hall programming and the overall residence hall atmosphere. Within the Sophomore Year at Emory program, there is also a themed-living floor called “Green Action”, which consists of a group of students who have self-selected to take their commitment to a sustainability living experience to an advanced level of activism.


The website URL where information about the theme is available:
A brief description of program(s) through which students can learn sustainable life skills:

Emory's Office of Residence Life and Housing believes “learning that occurs outside of the classroom can often be as valuable as learning that takes place in an academic setting.”  To that end, all staff are trained before students arrive in the fall as well as during the Resident Advisor class on how to incorporate sustainability themes and elements into their programming for residents.  Resident Advisors in the sustainability-themed halls (Few & Evans Hall, Green Action in Woodruff Residental Hall) are required to focus a portion of their programming on sustainability. Some examples of programs in the past year include teaching residents how to make their own environmentally safe cleaners, how to use Atlanta’s public transportation, how to use less water and energy when washing and drying clothes, and how to incorporate seasonal, fresh food from our campus Educational Garden Projects into food programs.


The website URL where information about the sustainable life skills program(s) is available:
A brief description of sustainability-focused student employment opportunities:

A variety of sustainability-focused student employment opportunities are available for Emory undergraduate and graduate students. The Center for Community Partnerships (CFCP) offers year-long fellowships for PhD students in the Graduate School and for graduate students in Law, Business, Nursing, Public Health, Theology, and Medicine. These fellowships include: an Engaged Teaching Instructor who teaches a Foundations of Sustainability course; a Community Partnership Fellow who partners with CFCP, the Office of Sustainability, and community partners to enhance engaged sustainability learning opportunities for students in the community; and an Engaged Teaching Assistant who supports the Masters in Development Practice program.
The Office of Sustainability hires paid undergraduate and graduate student interns throughout the academic year and summer to assist staff with on-campus initiatives.
Residence Life and Housing hires undergraduate Resident Advisors (RAs). All RAs are trained before students arrive in the fall as well as during the Resident Advisor class about sustainability on how to incorporate sustainability themes and elements into their programming for residents. 
Students work at Green Bean Coffee which serves fair trade, organic coffee/tea and educates customers about the importance of these products.
At the Rollins School of Public Health, the Rollins Earn and Learn (REAL) program provides funding for master's level public health graduate students to support their academic interests with applied public health experiences in federal, state, and county government agencies, Emory-affiliated programs, and non-profit organizations throughout Atlanta. Many of the REAL placement sites are sustainability-focused.


The website URL where information about the student employment opportuntities is available:
A brief description of graduation pledges through which students pledge to consider social and environmental responsibility in future job and other decisions:

Starting in 2014, graduating seniors have the opportunity to sign a graduation pledge at an Alumni Association event leading up to Commencement. All seniors who sign the pledge are given a pin with the Office of Sustainability's oak leaf logo to wear during Commencement ceremonies. The pledge incorporates the concepts in the Graduation Pledge Alliance's pledge but also be specific to Emory's culture and goals around sustainability. "I pledge to explore and consider the social, economic, and environmental consequences of my decisions and to use the knowledge I gained at Emory to improve the quality of life for current and future generations in my community and beyond."


The website URL where information about the graduation pledge program is available:
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A brief description of other co-curricular sustainability programs and initiatives:

Each year, the Office of Sustainability Initiatives administers the Sustainability Incentives Fund to support research, campus-based projects, and the development of new rituals to promote sustainability on Emory's campuses. Creative proposals are welcomed that seek new knowledge, support new behavior patterns, and foster cultural change. Faculty, staff, and students from Emory University and Emory Healthcare are eligible to apply for the Sustainability Incentives Fund. Funds may be used for supplies, materials, publicity, and travel costs. Proposals are welcome in all areas, with priority given to proposals in the areas of waste, sustainable food, energy, alternative transportation, and connection to "place." Research and rituals must be carried out on campus.


The website URL where information about other co-curricular sustainability programs and initiatives is available:

Additional web page for cultural arts events, installations, etc: https://blogs.emory.edu/omps/2013/11/08/trashion-show/

Additional web page for programs through which students can learn sustainable life skills: http://www.emory.edu/HOUSING/ABOUTUS/rlh.html

Additional web pages for sustainability-focused student employment opportunities:
http://sustainability.emory.edu/page/1034/Internships
http://www.emory.edu/HOUSING/JOBS/ra.html
http://www.sph.emory.edu/current_students/REAL/index.html

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.