Overall Rating Bronze
Overall Score 40.09
Liaison Allison Jenks
Submission Date March 5, 2021

STARS v2.2

New Mexico State University
AC-8: Campus as a Living Laboratory

Status Score Responsible Party
Complete 4.00 / 4.00 Allison Jenks
Facilities Sustainability Manager
Facilities and Services
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Is the institution utilizing its infrastructure and operations as a living laboratory for applied student learning for sustainability in relation to Campus Engagement?:
Yes

A brief description of the projects and how they contribute to understanding or advancing sustainability in relation to Campus Engagement:

The Outdoor Leadership Program (OLP) prepares NMSU students to plan, implement and lead outdoor recreation and/or cultural activities for the NMSU student body. Participants receive training in group dynamics, teaching techniques, risk management, wilderness first aid, Leave No Trace ethics, and outdoor skill sets such as backpacking and rock climbing. Each Fall Semester, the OLP seeks highly motivated students who want to enrich their college experience by increasing their leadership skill sets. Trained OLP leaders then plan and lead their peers on trips to various parts of the southwest while sharing a shelter, meals, and a vehicle.

As a part of our New Mexico Climate Change Education Seminar Series (NMSUCCESS) organized by faculty members from ACES, Geology, and the Sustainability Office. Within the organizing frequently students are selected to facilitate the sessions along with assist with promotion. This series is promoted to NMSU students, staff, faculty, and community members.


Is the institution utilizing its infrastructure and operations as a living laboratory for applied student learning for sustainability in relation to Public Engagement?:
Yes

A brief description of the projects and how they contribute to understanding or advancing sustainability in relation to Public Engagement:

As a part of our New Mexico Climate Change Education Seminar Series (NMSUCCESS) organized by faculty members from ACES, Geology, and the Sustainability Office. Within the organizing frequently students are selected to facilitate the sessions along with assist with promotion. This series is promoted to NMSU students, staff, faculty, and community members.


Is the institution utilizing its infrastructure and operations as a living laboratory for applied student learning for sustainability in relation to Air & Climate?:
Yes

A brief description of the projects and how they contribute to understanding or advancing sustainability in relation to Air & Climate:

The USDA Jornada Long Term Ecological Research (LTER) Station is located on campus and this LTER includes the Climate HUB (http://swclimatehub.info/) which conducts research into the characteristics and processes associated with changing climates in arid regions. This station employs many undergraduate and graduate students. Partnerships with faculty support research into the effects of prolonged drought, the impact of climate change on the Rio Grande and productivity agricultural areas in arid landscapes. Wind erosion research is conducted to quantify the effects of dust and erosion on air quality. Student projects include models to estimate and manage locations and potential for wind storms and "Dust Devils" that move large volumes of soil and material annually.


Is the institution utilizing its infrastructure and operations as a living laboratory for applied student learning for sustainability in relation to Buildings?:
Yes

A brief description of the projects and how they contribute to understanding or advancing sustainability in relation to Buildings:

In the fall semester a Capstone group works with the University Engineer to design and sometimes help to oversee construction of a medium voltage project. The group of seniors use NMSU guidelines on medium voltage installation, voltage drop, wire sizing and current calculations, expected energy use, design energy usage, fault calculations to determine coordination values, construction cost (based on previous projects), and arc flash calculations to design the new system. At this time Capstone has been used to design a new Chemistry complex substation, the new AG Go-Bond Project starting spring 2020 and the phase I swap out of 5-kV to 25-kV apparatus at Kent Hall, Business Complex and Hadley Hall. The Chemistry Project included a transformer to go from 5-kV to 25-kV at the Chemistry buildings, three new 25-kV transformers sized to the two year peak demand on each Chemistry building (’55, ’68, ‘96) and a 25-kV to 5-kV transformer to refeed the downstream buildings with 5-kV, and a tie switch for various redundant feeds and protected ways for building transformers. The approximate cost of the project was $350k. Construction was completed in summer 2018. The AG Go-Bond Project included design of 25-kV infrastructure to feed power to four new AG buildings BioMed, Feed Mill, Meat Lab and Implement Shed, on the west side of campus. Design criteria included the same as the Chemistry Project. Expected Construction Cost was in the $350k but recent changes has upped the cost to $450k. Construction is expected to be complete in fall 2020. The Zone 2200 Phase I Medium Voltage Infrastructure Improvements consisted of swapping the 5-kV to 25-kV on three building; Hadley Hall, Kent Hall, and Business Complex. This project included cable and ductbank, switches and new correctly sized transformers for each building. It also included All of the design criteria utilized by the students in the Chemistry Capstone. Cost of the Project was $289k and completed in fall 2019.


Is the institution utilizing its infrastructure and operations as a living laboratory for applied student learning for sustainability in relation to Energy?:
Yes

A brief description of the projects and how they contribute to understanding or advancing sustainability in relation to Energy:

Within the Electrical Engineering Department there is a course on power. The professor gives the students a project every semester where they look up a building in the NMSU Niagara system. The Niagara system has energy usage and power factor information going back two years. They look at the building's energy usage, transformer sizing with the utility maps, and energy savings using NMSU energy rates, and the return on investment. The students look at two year peak kW demand and power factor values then pick out a transformer size and associated costs, based on actual NMSU costs. The students than calculate energy savings between their transformer and the existing transformer feeding the building. They calculate the ROI based on actual energy costs, transformer costs and estimated energy savings by swapping the transformer.

Additionally every semester the Utilities Director and Supervisor of Plant Operations give tours of the satellite chiller plant and central utility plant to engineering students and any other interested students. These tours show energy savings efforts from the design, and management of the plants.


Is the institution utilizing its infrastructure and operations as a living laboratory for applied student learning for sustainability in relation to Food & Dining?:
Yes

A brief description of the projects and how they contribute to understanding or advancing sustainability in relation to Food & Dining:

As an agriculture college, we are very fortunate to have a USDA certified organic farm. The students work the farm and the food goes to our Sam Steele Café for sale, as well as Café 100 our Hotel Restaurant Tourism Management (HRTM) managed restaurant.


Is the institution utilizing its infrastructure and operations as a living laboratory for applied student learning for sustainability in relation to Grounds?:
Yes

A brief description of the projects and how they contribute to understanding or advancing sustainability in relation to Grounds:

Professor Rachel Gioanini class is comprised of students majoring in Horticulture with the focus of landscape design and construction field. As part of their curriculum they develop a landscape design and they coordinate with facilities and services to implement into the campus landscape.

Keep State Great is an annual community service celebration that takes place in the fall before the week of Homecoming. Students, alumni, faculty and staff commit their time to beautify the NMSU Campus. Projects include, cleaning, painting, and picking up trash on main campus. Keep State Great is a time to celebrate what being an Aggie is about. The student volunteers learn what it means to maintain the grounds of a 250 acres campus. http://asnmsu.nmsu.edu/ksg/

Greek week is usually comprised of fraternal and sorority organizations within NMSU that give back to NMSU by providing community service once a year. Services in general include litter pick up around campus, campus housing yard clean up, Painting of the “A” on A-mountain, and landscape restorations around campus.

Stem students are comprised of K-12 students interested in science, technology, engineering, and math focuses of studies. Once a year they give back to the NMSU campus by providing community service in the overall enhancement of campus landscapes.


Is the institution utilizing its infrastructure and operations as a living laboratory for applied student learning for sustainability in relation to Purchasing?:
No

A brief description of the projects and how they contribute to understanding or advancing sustainability in relation to Purchasing:
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IIs the institution utilizing its infrastructure and operations as a living laboratory for applied student learning for sustainability in relation to Transportation?:
Yes

A brief description of the projects and how they contribute to understanding or advancing sustainability in relation to Transportation:

The Bike Shop at NMSU trains student employees to perform bike maintenance for the rest of the community. Bicycles are a valuable alternative mode of transportation on campus, as it takes about 15-20 minutes to walk from one end of campus to the other, but only 3-4 minutes on a bicycle. Additionally, the bike shop rents out bicycles to students for the entire semester in case someone moves to campus without one of their own. When the Outdoor Recreation program takes trips, all students ride together in a 15 passenger van.


Is the institution utilizing its infrastructure and operations as a living laboratory for applied student learning for sustainability in relation to Waste?:
Yes

A brief description of the projects and how they contribute to understanding or advancing sustainability in relation to Waste:

Recycling center tours and signage across campus.
Student led research into the most effective locations for recycling bins on campus involved graduates students and undergrads to. Map bin locations and designate "best" sites for bin placement based on population densities.
Tours of campus recycling center identify the volume of materials processed and strategies to improve efficiency of processing.

*** E-mailed Art 12/17/2020 *** E-mail again 1/7/2020 ***


Is the institution utilizing its infrastructure and operations as a living laboratory for applied student learning for sustainability in relation to Water?:
No

A brief description of the projects and how they contribute to understanding or advancing sustainability in relation to Water:
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Is the institution utilizing its infrastructure and operations as a living laboratory for applied student learning for sustainability in relation to Coordination & Planning?:
No

A brief description of the projects and how they contribute to understanding or advancing sustainability in relation to Coordination & Planning:
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Is the institution utilizing its infrastructure and operations as a living laboratory for applied student learning for sustainability in relation to Diversity & Affordability?:
Yes

A brief description of the projects and how they contribute to understanding or advancing sustainability in relation to Diversity & Affordability:

Outdoor Recreation sees a wide range of students who are served by our program, and extra care is taken to be sure that everything is affordable and welcoming. Repairs at our bike shop cost about 25% as much as the local bike shops, and a large majority of our customers are international students who have no other means of personal transportation. Outdoor trips include not only high adrenaline activities, but also cultural trips to places like the Trinity Site and Hueco Tanks State Park and Historical Site. Recreating in all level of University Recreation is affordable, as Intramural Sports and use of the facility are completely free for full time students. While in the weight room or on the soccer field, students from all backgrounds are able to interact in the same community space.


Is the institution utilizing its infrastructure and operations as a living laboratory for applied student learning for sustainability in relation to Investment & Finance?:
No

A brief description of the projects and how they contribute to understanding or advancing sustainability in relation to Investment & Finance:
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Is the institution utilizing its infrastructure and operations as a living laboratory for applied student learning for sustainability in relation to Wellbeing & Work?:
Yes

A brief description of the projects and how they contribute to understanding or advancing sustainability in relation to Wellbeing & Work:

The OLP equip student leaders with practical leadership experiences to complement their academic degrees and give them the edge in the job market after graduation. NMSU University Recreation is the largest employer on campus, providing a place on campus for students to work close to their dorms and classrooms.


Website URL where information about the institution’s living laboratory program is available:
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Additional documentation to support the submission:
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