|Submission Date||March 1, 2019|
EN-3: Student Life
|2.00 / 2.00||
Director of Sustainability
Physical Facilities Department
Does the institution have one or more active student groups focused on sustainability?:
A brief description of active student groups focused on sustainability:
Green Team: Miami University’s Green Team is a group representing students whose goal is to improve environmental sustainability. Through on-campus educational events, speakers, and annual recycling and energy/water reduction competitions, they strive to achieve this goal. The Green Team promotes the Miami Sustainability Commitments and Goals, as well as solid waste reduction, recycling efforts, renewable energy, water reduction/conservation, energy efficiency in buildings, and sustainable transportation. The Director of Sustainability is the advisor and the Sustainability Coordinator is the President.
Green Hawks Media: GreenHawks Media is Miami University’s first online student publication devoted to increasing the awareness of sustainability on campus and beyond. They strive to be the go-to site to find everything the university is doing to be sustainable, what people think about the latest sustainability trends and how an individual can be more sustainable yourself. The organization consists of 17 students from diverse disciplines.
Green Oxford: Miami University’s largest student-run environmental group on campus. The group's 30+ active members have been working towards improving Miami’s sustainability since early 2007. Student Governed.
Zero-Waste Oxford: Formed in 2018, Zero Waste Oxford focuses on the promotion of waste reduction and management. Some of their events include:
Eco-Reps: Each residence hall has a student Eco-Rep who promotes sustainability practices through trash audits, a Water Bottle Project, Eco Facts, and battery/trash bag recycling.
Engineers Without Borders - engineering majors design and implement sustainable engineering projects in developing communities. Since 2010 have worked on a water development project in Ecuador and a project to increase the supply of potable water for a school in Muramba, Rwanda.
The website URL where information about the student groups is available (optional):
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?:
A brief description of the gardens, farms, community supported agriculture (CSA) or fishery programs, and/or urban agriculture projects:
The Institute for Food at Miami University operates an off-site farm. At the farm, Miami students work alongside university faculty and Oxford community members to cultivate the land, plant seeds, and harvest crops — selling and donating our fresh local produce to students and community members alike. The Institute for Food Farm seeks to provide a model for others to follow: a model of sustainable food production, community engagement, and experiential learning. Through the farm, students have opportunities to gain experience in organic agricultural and sustainable systems. Students interested in learning basic sustainable vegetable production skills sign up for AMS/IES 278 - Introduction to Food Systems and Food Studies (4 semester hours). This course introduces students to food from an interdisciplinary perspective building on the concepts underlying food systems and food studies. The course includes a lab component on the Institute for Food Farm. Students who have taken AMS/IES 278 - Introduction to Food Systems and Food Studies are eligible to sign up for IES 340 - Internship on the farm where they can begin to gain more experience in the practices and business of sustainable farming. The farm also welcomes new and experienced farm volunteers. The farm is open to anyone who wishes to volunteer.
The website URL where information about the gardens, farms or agriculture projects is available (optional):
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)?:
A brief description of the student-run enterprises:
The Zero Waste Oxford organization hosts a thrift store to promote the purchase of second-hand clothes and educate the university students and community about the negative environmental effects of the “fast fashion” industry. With the pop-up, they hope to foster awareness about the waste produced in everyday life and help students recognize areas in their life where they can send less waste to the landfill.
The website URL where information about the student-run enterprises is available (optional):
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?:
A brief description of the sustainable investment funds, green revolving funds or sustainable microfinance initiatives:
Miami University has a Revolving Green Fund (MURGF). The mission of the MURGF is to encourage the growth and development of environmentally sound technologies and practices at Miami University and the greater Oxford community by financing innovative initiatives with sustainable returns. The MURGF will engage students, faculty, staff, and community members for these initiatives; all in coordination with the greater academic mission of the University.
Goals of the MURGF:
To foster sustainable design and environmentally sound technologies and practices at Miami University and in the greater Oxford community
To transform Miami into a national leader and an exemplary model for other institutions of higher education, community groups, non-profit organizations, businesses, and governmental bodies
To empower students with a voice and opportunities to reshape the Miami community.
To exceed local, state, and federal environmental regulation standards through funding innovative techniques and best-in-class sustainable practices.
To facilitate investment in renewable energy, alternative fuels, and energy efficiency.
To reconnect with alumni and approach external benefactors to solidify the prominence and longevity of the fund.
The website URL where information about the sustainable investment funds, green revolving funds or sustainable microfinance initiatives is available (optional):
Does the institution have conferences, speaker series, symposia or similar events related to sustainability that have students as the intended audience?:
A brief description of the conferences, speaker series, symposia or similar events related to sustainability:
The student organization, Green Oxford, hosts a film showing twice a year: once in the spring and once in the fall. The film always focuses on a contemporary environmental issue that attracts students, staff, and faculty. Green Oxford also invites a panel of experts (students, staff, and faculty) on the environmental issue discussed in the film in order to facilitate dialogue from the audience following the conclusion of the film.
The Institute for the Environment and Sustainability holds an annual Professional Symposium on campus. The symposium features presentations that feature alumni of the IES Master of Environmental Science program. They speak about their careers in the environmental science and sustainability fields. Each session of the symposium features presentations and a panel discussion. Breaks between sessions provide opportunities for students to meet with the professionals. Undergraduates and graduate students learn more about career paths in sustainability from Miami alumni.
The website URL where information about the conferences, speaker series, symposia or similar events related to sustainability is available (optional):
Does the institution have cultural arts events, installations or performances related to sustainability that have students as the intended audience?:
A brief description of the cultural arts events, installations or performances related to sustainability:
The annual Oxford Kinetics Festival involves students of many majors; kinetic sculptures are created and built for contests, with a focus on sustainability and repurposing materials.
The website URL where information about the cultural arts events, installations or performances is available (optional):
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?:
A brief description of the wilderness or outdoors programs that follow Leave No Trace principles:
Miami University has the Outdoor Leadership Certificate Program, which is a program for students interested in pursuing professional or leisure opportunities leading youth or adult learners in an outdoor sport or adventure learning excursions or activities. The program is 14 credit hours and prepares graduates to assume outdoor leadership roles through classroom and experimental coursework focused on (1) leadership theory and skills appropriate for outdoor educational contexts, (2) technical and interpersonal skills for outdoor activity/sport leadership, (3) environmental science and sustainability practices, and (4) leadership capacities for working with and leading culturally diverse groups of learners. EDL 340 Internship is the final course taken in the program and includes Wilderness First Aid and Leave No Trace Trainer certifications. The Leave No Trace Trainer certification course is a two-day course that assists students in learning more about the seven principles of Leave No Trace, and techniques for disseminating these low impact skills. This course follows the curriculum of the Leave No Trace Center for Outdoor Ethics.
The website URL where information about the wilderness or outdoors programs is available (optional):
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)?:
A brief description of the sustainability-related themes chosen for themed semesters, years, or first-year experiences:
Miami offers students living in residence halls the ability to join a Living Learning Community (LLC). An (LLC) is a group of students who live together on a corridor or in a residence hall that is closely tied to an academic major, university program or initiative. Through partnerships with a variety of departments, faculty, and staff, students will have access to activities that tie directly into the theme of their LLC. One LLC, the Environmental Awareness Program (EAP), is an opportunity for students of any major interested in living in with other students who enjoy the outdoors and/or are concerned about environmental issues. The activities in this community focus on exploring the environment in Oxford and surrounding areas, exploring topics such as sustainability, astronomy, and local organic foods, and connecting with faculty members. Students in the Environmental Awareness Program learn about internships and co-curricular opportunities related to sustainability and the environment. EAP hosts a Green Mega Fair once a year in Peabody Hall. The Green Mega Fair invites Miami-based environmental organizations, the Sustainability Department, and environmentally minded organizations/business in Oxford to expose Miami students to their goals, missions, and work. The Green Mega Fair fosters conversation and collaboration across organizations and departments, while also gives students an avenue to find ways to get involved with sustainability efforts on campus and in the Oxford area.
Miami students in the Institute for Environment and Sustainability (IES) also helps host the annual Earth Fest, a celebration of Earth Day in the Oxford community. This is a free festival featuring games, interactive booths, and workshops, live music, Oxford Farmer's Market and more. Miami University organizations, departments, and the sustainability department are always present.
The website URL where information about the sustainability-related themes is available (optional):
Does the institution have programs through which students can learn sustainable life skills?:
A brief description of the programs through which students can learn sustainable life skills:
The website URL where information about the sustainable life skills programs is available (optional):
Does the institution offer sustainability-focused student employment opportunities?:
A brief description of the sustainability-focused student employment opportunities offered by the institution:
The Sustainability Coordinator is a part-time position filled by a graduate student pursuing a Masters of Environmental Science from the Institute for Environment and Sustainability. The position falls under the Director of Sustainability and is housed in the Physical Facilities Department of the university. The Coordinator helps in data collection and analytics, compiling reports, campus outreach, co-manages the campus battery recycling program and is the President of the Miami University Green Team, a student sustainability educator program on campus.
Project Dragonfly Graduate Assistants
Project Dragonfly has two graduate assistants that assist in the recruitment of students to the Project Dragonfly program, a graduate program that focuses on conservation and community engagement. The graduate assistants also perform outreach for the program’s mission to community members and across campus.
The website URL where information about the student employment opportunities is available:
Does the institution have graduation pledges through which students pledge to consider social and environmental responsibility in future job and other decisions?:
A brief description of the graduation pledges:
The website URL where information about the graduation pledges is available (optional):
Does the institution have other co-curricular sustainability programs and initiatives?:
A brief description of the other co-curricular sustainability programs and initiatives:
The Sustainability Committee includes a member of the student organization Green Oxford and the Associated Student Government (ASG).
Miami’s Associated Student Government (ASG) has a student position for a Secretary for Infrastructure and Sustainability.
The website URL where information about other co-curricular sustainability programs and initiatives is available (optional):
Estimated percentage of students (full-time and part-time) that participate annually in sustainability-focused co-curricular education and outreach programs (0-100):
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 and complete the Data Inquiry Form.