Overall Rating Reporter - expired
Overall Score
Liaison John Lerczak
Submission Date March 2, 2018
Executive Letter Download

STARS v2.1

Lewis University
EN-3: Student Life

Status Score Responsible Party
Complete Reporter John Lerczak
Director of Sustainability
Facilities
"---" indicates that no data was submitted for this field

Does the institution have one or more active student groups focused on sustainability?:
Yes

A brief description of active student groups focused on sustainability:

In the fall of 2015, the student sustainability council formed. Their focus is developing new sustainability programs and furthering existing efforts. They have worked with the Sustainability Coordinator in planning events relating to America Recycles Day, Food Day and Earth Week. They have also adopted their own event series to include volunteer work days at local forest preserves. They are currently working with members of the Thirst Project to raise money to help build clean and sustainable wells in developing countries. This is a student led group that is open to all of campus, they meet bi-weekly throughout the year. In 2016 the club organized an event inviting current students who had a sustainability-related internship to speak about their experiences and give advice on how to get involved. They will also be working on Earth Week 2017 and showing a film discussing the impacts of climate change.


The website URL where information about the student groups is available (optional):
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Does the institution have gardens, farms, community supported agriculture (CSA) or fishery programs, and/or urban agriculture projects where students are able to gain experience in organic agriculture and sustainable food systems?:
No

A brief description of the gardens, farms, community supported agriculture (CSA) or fishery programs, and/or urban agriculture projects:
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The website URL where information about the gardens, farms or agriculture projects is available (optional):
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Does the institution have student-run enterprises that include sustainability as part of their mission statements or stated purposes (e.g. cafés through which students gain sustainable business skills)?:
No

A brief description of the student-run enterprises:
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The website URL where information about the student-run enterprises is available (optional):
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Does the institution have 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

A brief description of the sustainable investment funds, green revolving funds or sustainable microfinance initiatives:

Each year the University Sustainability Council holds a Come Clean, Go Green Sustainability Proposal competition. This competition is open to undergraduate or graduate students and asks them to create a proposal for a sustainability related project they could implement on campus. Students submit their proposal for blind judging by the Sustainability Council and the winner receives a $600 budget to implement their proposal. Previous winning proposals include creating a sanctuary for monarch butterflies and installing low-flow shower heads in a campus building.


The website URL where information about the sustainable investment funds, green revolving funds or sustainable microfinance initiatives is available (optional):
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Does the institution have conferences, speaker series, symposia or similar events related to sustainability that have students as the intended audience?:
Yes

A brief description of the conferences, speaker series, symposia or similar events related to sustainability:

Each year the University holds sustainability related events, America Recycles Day, Earth Day, Arbor Day and a Come Clean, Go Green Sustainability Contest. All of these events involve bringing students in as the main focus with different sustainability related topics and speakers. The Come Clean, Go Green Contest is one of the most unique sustainability related annual events that brings students to develop their own idea, present it, and hear feedback from Lewis University faculty and staff as well as well known environmental presenters. Other departmental groups on campus, such as University Ministry, also holds speaker series with sustainability related topics. Such as urban farms and social justice. America Recycles Day is an event that encourages student groups across campus to come together and create a carnival type environment and create a game surrounding the theme of recycling and reuse.


The website URL where information about the conferences, speaker series, symposia or similar events related to sustainability is available (optional):
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Does the institution have cultural arts events, installations or performances related to sustainability that have students as the intended audience?:
Yes

A brief description of the cultural arts events, installations or performances related to sustainability:

Lewis University is apart of SMHEC, The South Metropolitan Higher Education Consortium, each year the group hosts a Student Sustainability Summit that allows University students to present on topics relating to Sustainability. This year the Summit was focused on encouraging students to participate in the ECO leader project.
In the Fall of 2015, the University held a week long symposium titled "Sing a New Song!" that focused on Pope Francis' global letter urging dialogue and action to heel the earth and end poverty. This was an interdisciplinary symposium that brought students from all programs of study to learn about these issues and hear how Lewis University Faculty/Staff and outside speakers interpreted the Pope's message and what actions we can take to live that message.

The symposium was sponsored by the Office for Mission and Identity and the Center for Ministry & Spirituality. The Sustainability Council was one of the event co-sponsors.


The website URL where information about the cultural arts events, installations or performances is available (optional):
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Does the institution have wilderness or outdoors programs (e.g. that organize hiking, backpacking, kayaking, or other outings for students) that follow Leave No Trace principles?:
Yes

A brief description of the wilderness or outdoors programs that follow Leave No Trace principles:

A major focus on natural areas has been placed on Lewis University, one such area is the Burnham Centennial Nature Trail. Each year three events are held on the trail. These events focus on removing invasive species as well as planting native ones. All students, faculty, and staff are educated during these events to show the importance of nature while gaining an understanding of how to interact with nature in a way that leaves no trace. The programs are developed in conjunction with faculty, staff and student ideas from sustainability council meetings.


The website URL where information about the wilderness or outdoors programs is available (optional):
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Does the institution have sustainability-related themes chosen for themed semesters, years, or first-year experiences (e.g. choosing a sustainability-related book for common reading)?:
No

A brief description of the sustainability-related themes chosen for themed semesters, years, or first-year experiences:
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The website URL where information about the sustainability-related themes is available (optional):
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Does the institution have programs through which students can learn sustainable life skills?:
Yes

A brief description of the programs through which students can learn sustainable life skills:

Students are exposed to sustainability in many different ways at Lewis University. During Earth Day celebrations students are welcomed to learn more about ways to live a more sustainable life, through water conservation, energy savings, recycling, composting and more. Students are also exposed to sustainability initiatives through social media sites that will give out green tips and current sustainability related issues and topics.

A student group working with University Ministry has taken up social justice and environmental sustainability to their cause. They have planned a trip to the Eco-Justice Center in Racine, Wisconsin where they will learn about sustainable farming practices and living a more sustainable life. Over fall break, the same group of students also go on a faith based service and justice trip educating students about the connections between race, poverty and environmental degradation. This group participates in University Earth Week events and works to promote a sustainable lifestyle on campus.


The website URL where information about the sustainable life skills programs is available (optional):
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Does the institution offer sustainability-focused student employment opportunities?:
Yes

A brief description of the sustainability-focused student employment opportunities offered by the institution:

A student sustainability internship position is available for any interested student. The student hired for this position works closely with the Sustainability Coordinator on campus to develop and promote new sustainability programs on campus. The student will assist the sustainability coordinator in gathering sustainability related data and by the end of the internship gain a better understanding of how sustainability is incorporated into a University setting and be better prepared to enter the market for green jobs.


The website URL where information about the student employment opportunities is available:
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Does the institution have graduation pledges through which students pledge to consider social and environmental responsibility in future job and other decisions?:
No

A brief description of the graduation pledges:
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The website URL where information about the graduation pledges is available (optional):
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Does the institution have other co-curricular sustainability programs and initiatives?:
No

A brief description of the other co-curricular sustainability programs and initiatives:
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The website URL where information about other co-curricular sustainability programs and initiatives is available (optional):
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Estimated percentage of students (full-time and part-time) that participate annually in sustainability-focused co-curricular education and outreach programs (0-100):
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Additional documentation to support the submission:
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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.