Overall Rating Gold
Overall Score 70.85
Liaison Amy Butler
Submission Date Feb. 28, 2019
Executive Letter Download

STARS v2.1

Michigan State University
EN-5: Outreach Campaign

Status Score Responsible Party
Complete 4.00 / 4.00 Mara Spears
Sustainability Program Coordinator
Office of the EVP for Administration
"---" indicates that no data was submitted for this field

Has the institution held at least one sustainability-related outreach campaign during the previous three years that was directed at students and yielded measurable, positive results in advancing sustainability? :

Has the institution held at least one sustainability-related outreach campaign during the previous three years that was directed at employees and yielded measurable, positive results in advancing sustainability?:

Name of the campaign:
Green Certification

A brief description of the campaign, including how students and/or employees were engaged:

"The Green Certification program is designed to recognize, assist, and promote sustainability. The program is focused on faculty and staff (all employees) and units. The program engages employees to take steps toward reducing their environmental footprint within their working spaces. Units and departments demonstrate their commitment through initiatives for communication and education, energy efficiency and conservation, waste reduction and recycling, water conservation, and procurement. Green Certification seeks to motivate environmentally friendly behaviors by providing definitive guidelines and reducing confusion about best practices. This year, green certification was expanded to include multiple levels of certification, Bronze, Silver and Gold, to reflect the different levels of sustainable actions and processes within a space. There are four categories of certification including: offices, information technology spaces, science laboratories and kitchens. Each office selects a member to go through the certification procedure, and that office member serves as a liaison between their office and MSU Sustainability. Since the program began over 794 spaces have been certified, meaning almost 800 MSU employees have taken initiative and work to help their office space stay sustainable and promote green practices at work.
The program was set aside briefly in 2018; many offices had signed on and certified their spaces, but the link was left active for interested offices inspired to certify. In the summer of 2018, seven additional offices were certified in MSU Extension. The District 3 director (head of 6 counties) headed the certification and seven of their District 3 Offices. Other prominently certified areas are the Surplus Store and Recycling Center, Procurement and Purchasing, and various IPF buildings. According the MSU's energy transition plan, the university is using less energy every year even as more buildings, employees, and students are taken on at the university.

A brief description of the measured positive impact(s) of the campaign:

Certifications increased dramatically in targeted high energy areas such as Labs and IT Spaces. MSU Offices throughout Michigan have received the certification, including division offices and MSU Extension offices. After certifying more than 180 spaces in 2015, staff members now seek out certifications on their own and pursue the certification independently. After certifying more than 180 spaces in 2015, seven additional offices received the certification over the summer of 2018. These offices serve six counties in Northeastern Michigan, and were conducted by MSU Extension offices. These seven offices received silver certifications, and their efforts have let to the restablishment of the certification program. 

The website URL where information about the campaign is available:
Name of the campaign (2nd campaign):
Pack Up. Pitch In. 

A brief description of the campaign, including how students and/or employees were engaged (2nd campaign):

Pack Up. Pitch In. Is a campus-wide sustainability strategy with the goal of waste reduction during student move-in (at the beginning of each semester) and move-out (at the end of each semester) weeks on campus. SO many waste accumulates during these hectic moving periods, and due to the confines of dorms and the desire to be finished quickly, thousands of pounds of materials are wasted. MSU has hosted this diversion program for 20 years, and during these periods students can donate unwanted items instead of throwing them away. Items eligible for donation include nonperishable food, household items, books, electronics, clothing, and shoes. Items that are accepted during this time for recycling include paper, newspaper, boxboard, glass, all plastics, household metals, cardboard, styrofoam and carpet tubes. In addition to solid waste diversion, students moving our are encouraged to clean up their dorm spaces, shut and secure windows, close curtains and lower window blinds, and turn off the lights to the rooms when they leave. 

A brief description of the measured positive impact(s) of the campaign (2nd campaign):

In 2015, MSU accomplished a 73.1% diversion rate; in 2016 MSU's diversion rate was 45.8%; and in 2017 the diversion rate rose again to 73%. While 2016's year showed lower diversion rates, with 153,334 lbs of materials recycling compared to 110,586 in 2015 and 113,774 in 2017. For further detail on waste diversion and impacts of the Pack Up. Pitch In. program, please see the attached document. 

The website URL where information about the campaign is available (2nd campaign):
A brief description of other sustainability-related outreach campaigns, including measured positive impacts:

"The Campus Mobility Plan is a campaign centered on sustainable transportation, raising awareness of the Last Mile Traveled, and helping decrease the amount of traffic occurring in the main areas of campus. The mobility plan has engaged students through a survey on dockless vs. docked bikeshares, done in partnership with Capital Area Transportation Authority (CATA). In addition, the bus system on campus, which is done in partnership with CATA and uses their public transport buses, made rides free for students on campus. A website was created for campus mobility and social media was amped up around the topic to engage students and the surrounding MSU community, and promotional material was created to spread awareness of MSU's autonomous vehicle research and overall mobility strategy. The Campus Mobility Plan began with a survey conduction of existing campus mobility behavior. The survey was a collaborative, cross-unit inquiry of MSU faculty and staff. It was sent to 11,000 employees who work on the East Lansing campus, and 2,571 survey responses were received from all major administrative units on campus. Those who responded self-identified as 55% support staff, 22% as faculty, 10% as academic specialist, and 9% as administration/executive management. 89% of respondents drive a personal vehicle to work, and it was also found that more respondents move cars for meetings than for lunch. This made it clear that Face-to-face meetings contribute to campus congestion, as do current course scheduling configurations. The survey also made it clear the traditional 8-5 work schedule contributes to campus congestion. In addition to the above quantitative measurements, quality of work and work environment were also addressed during the survey outreach as well. It was found that supervisors not already granting flex-time are perceived as being unsupportive of potentially granting flex-time, and that a culture change is needed on campus to change the perceptions of course scheduling, attending meetings, and work schedules. 
Survey: https://aan.msu.edu/wp-content/uploads/2017/10/Gaboury-Mobility.pdf
Mobility ppt General: https://aan.msu.edu/wp-content/uploads/2017/10/Verbonceour-Mobility.pdf
MSU hosted a Year of Water in 2016 called Water Moves. This was a one-year program with diverse activities including art, film, music, performances, lectures, events, and exhibits across campus. By inviting guest speakers on water to the MSU campus – including artists, scholars, authors, musicians, filmmakers, lawmakers and government officials – MSU aimed to educate to empower community action, inspire creativity, and instill a sense of urgency to respect and appreciate the most prevalent and precious resource on our planet. The initiative strengthened the university-wide focus on water and cut across multiple strategic imperatives under Bolder by Design: enriching the student experience, global inclusiveness, and engaging the community. Water moves included a musical concert, photo exhibitions, a drinking water fountain competition, planetarium show, symposium, campus surveys, and a river clean-up. Nine student submissions made it to the final round of the water fountain design competition; $15,000 was awarded to the winning team, $7,000 and $5,000 were awarded to the second and third teams, respectively. Hundreds of students participated in the event. The performance-based Water events on campus brought in hundreds of students and community members alike. Students separately conducted surveys of campus water use and water bottle recycling rates: students surveyed over 1,200 participants, and highlights include: 90% of participants understand that plastic bottle use has a negative environmental, 36.6% of students mainly drink bottled water, and 24% of students don't use water filter stations on campus (while 37% don't know about the filtering stations at all). The annual Environment and Policy Program Symposium called Fate of the Earth received dozens of student poster submissions and high attendance at their keynote and poster presentations. MSU was able to create campus and community engagement with research and through academic projects; Overall, the year was a tremendous success in raising awareness of water importance across the globe.
Water surveys: https://sustainability.msu.edu/get-involved/faculty-resources/get-involved-faculty-water-study.html
Fate of the Earth: http://www.espp.msu.edu/events/fateoftheearth/2018/index.html"

The website URL where information about the programs or initiatives is available:
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.