|Submission Date||Dec. 23, 2020|
Oregon State University
EN-3: Student Life
|2.00 / 2.00||
Sustainability Program Specialist
Does the institution have an active student group focused on sustainability?:
Name and a brief description of the active student groups focused on sustainability:
Community Engagement & Leadership (CEL) works to advance student efforts to create a culture of sustainability and civic engagement at Oregon State University through programming that fosters social responsibility and advances environmental, social, and economic justice. CEL believes the world should be a more just place for everyone. CEL believes that everyone's actions matter and that OSU students have the power to shape the world. Through engaging students in self-development, community-based learning, direct service, and advocacy in the greater Corvallis community, CEL cultivate leaders and change-makers. CEL works to create more sustainable, caring, and equitable communities.
CEL challenges students to lead with care, align to their purpose, and build leadership skills. As a dynamic campus resource, CEL co-creates opportunities for students to integrate the knowledge, skills, and wisdom gained inside and outside of the classroom to transform themselves and their communities.
* Advance students' capacity to lead for sustainable community change.
* Strengthen OSU students' connection to place and social responsibility, desire to steward the local
community, advance civic and sustainability values
* Reduce the ecological footprint of the OSU community.
* Identify and help implement best practices through collaboration and research with OSU and the
* Manage student funds responsibly.
* Diversify and integrate with the OSU sustainability community.
Objectives are implemented through:
* Volunteer and civic engagement opportunities
* Voter registration and education
* Educational events that foster dialogue, deliberation, and systems thinking skills
* Project leadership opportunities
* Cultivating reciprocal partnerships with local nonprofit and government agencies working on
sustainability and other justice related issues
* Community building events
* Experiential learning, service-learning, place-based education
* Grassroots organizing, leadership, and community engagement trainings and workshops
* Relationships with faculty, staff, and administration
CEL work implements its mission statement through financing internships, activities, projects, and work parties.
The CEL has helped fund:
* Interns on the restoration of Oak Creek
* An on campus food assessment
* Water Refill Stations Retrofit
* Bike delivery for the on campus paper
* Energy efficiency studies
* Permaculture learning garden
* Corvallis Bicycle Collective
Does the institution have a garden, farm, community supported agriculture (CSA) or fishery program, or an urban agriculture project 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 OSU Organic Growers Club is an all-volunteer, student-run, organic farming project that began in 2000. The group was founded by a handful of undergraduate students on the notion that folks getting a degree in agriculture science should at some point in their academic careers, put a seed in the ground, take care of it, and harvest the benefits of that effort. Since then, the group and the farm have grown into much more than a ideological reaction and more toward a forward thinking community of students, staff, and faculty that have a common interest in food, fun, and above all experiencing the reality that is ecosystem sustenance.
The OSU Organic Growers Club farm is located on ~2 acres of OSU agricultural research land and has gained the support of many faculty, staff and the community which has helped it to grow to over 300 members and 400 community clients.
Does the institution have a student-run enterprise that includes sustainability as part of its mission statement or stated purpose?:
A brief description of the student-run enterprises:
Now called the College of Business’ Social Impact Club, what was known as "16xOSU" focuses on mobilizing university students to create economic opportunity for others while discovering their own potential. The Social Impact Club is an opportunity for students to apply their classroom experiences to the real world with the help of faculty and advisors. Skills learned in market economics, entrepreneurship, personal finances, sustainability, and business ethics are applied to real life business situations. The Club participates in community outreach programs at OSU and around the world.
The Innovation Nation (launched based off of the Austin Entrepreneurship Program) at Weatherford and Poling Residential Colleges, as well as the International Living Learning Center Global Village, is a unique living-learning environment for undergraduates offering entrepreneurship courses, hands-on experience, and the opportunity to explore business ideas.
Does the institution have a sustainable investment fund, green revolving fund, or sustainable microfinance initiative 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:
The College of Business’ Social Impact Club has participated in several microfinance activities internationally over the last decade, with the intention at each location being to set up a revolving loan model where they could ultimately pull out and have the programming continue. Funds for the microloans were raised in BA161/162, a foundations of business class series that all first-year students in the College of Business take. In this series, student teams run microbusinesses with profits ultimately going to fund our international microloan work.
In 2008, the student club began its work in Guatemala, where they provided start-up funds and educational workshops for local entrepreneurs in the coffee industry. OSU students partnered with De La Gente, a local organization, and decisions were made by the community members who participated in the model. Entrepreneurs were encouraged to “pay it forward,” rather than pay back their loans. In this, the entrepreneurs provided services to others in their community, typically in the form of information-sharing and education. After 3 years in Guatemala, the student club began working in Nicaragua, this time partnering with a local non-profit organization called TECHO. Funds were monitored and managed by TECHO with a high level of community member involvement on how funds were to be paid back. In this model, funds were paid back into a community bank account and then used to fund community-based projects decided upon by the community. In 2014, the student club began work in Uganda, partnering with a local non-governmental organization called TERREWODE. TERREWODE works to rehabilitate women who suffer from obstetric fistula, a debilitating childbirth injury. In the club’s work with TERREWODE, a handicraft cooperative was established with women’s salaries being paid by product sales in the United States. Our 5-year commitment to TERREWODE is coming to a close, yet it is still a project that several of the team members maintain.
After a decade in this space, the Social Impact Club has granted nearly $60,000 in microloans.
(Source: Lauren Caruso, OSU College of Business)
Has the institution hosted a conference, speaker series, symposium, or similar event focused on sustainability during the previous three years that had students as the intended audience?:
A brief description of the conferences, speaker series, symposia, or similar events focused on sustainability:
The Starker Lecture Series takes inspiration from the Starker Family's history of leadership in supporting sound forestry and vibrant communities through scientifically grounded education and positive, sustained action. The Starkers' long-time recognition of the value of closely observing and learning from actions and outcomes "in the woods" also inspires an integration of technical knowledge with practical, on-the-ground experience. The lectures carry an emphasis on issues and opportunities in the active management of forest resources, through lectures, in depth discussions, and field based events.
Held on the second Monday of the month, Science Pub Corvallis offers cool presentations in an informal atmosphere where attendees can interact with experts. No scientific background is required to attend.
The Pacific Fisheries Technologists is an organization that includes three parties: industry, academia and government that exchange the most up to date technical information during their 3-day annual conference. Directed and organized by OSU members the conference includes every state from Alaska to Mexico along the Pacific Ocean and often includes fellow visitors from Pacific Rim countries as well. The 2019 conference centered on the theme of “70 years: responsible choices for sea and seafood.”
Has the institution hosted a cultural arts event, installation, or performance focused on sustainability with the previous three years that had students as the intended audience?:
A brief description of the cultural arts events, installations, or performances focused on sustainability:
Art About Agriculture is a program in the College of Agricultural Sciences which encourages artists to investigate agriculture and natural resources themes for creating their works of art. It strives to develop an understanding and appreciation of food and fiber among Oregon's diverse audiences.
A permanent mural titled "Powered by Sustainability" spans a nearly 25 foot section of a wall within the Kelley Engineering Center and demonstrates the connection of the work done by the Electrical Engineering and Computer Science department and aspects of sustainability, specifically focused on renewable energy systems.
Does the institution have a wilderness or outdoors program that follow Leave No Trace principles?:
A brief description of the wilderness or outdoors programs that follow Leave No Trace principles:
The OSU Adventure Leadership Institute (ALI) helps students learn about the recreational opportunities in the area and follows Leave No Trace principles. Resources are available at the ALI to learn more about what can be done to leave no trace.
* Plan ahead and prepare
* Camp and travel on durable surfaces
* Pack it in pack it out
* Leave what you find
* Minimize use and impact of fire
* Oregon's Wild Areas
* Pacific Northwest Hikes
* Oregon State Parks
* Pacific Northwest Camping
* The Pacific Crest Trail Hiker's Handbook
* National Forest Service Maps
Specific courses that include Leave No Trace content include: Backpacking, Backcountry Leadership, and Wilderness Living Techniques.
Has the institution had a sustainability-focused theme chosen for a themed semester, year, or first-year experience during the previous three years?:
A brief description of the sustainability-focused themes chosen for themed semesters, years, or first-year experiences:
Does the institution have a program through which students can learn sustainable life skills?:
A brief description of the programs through which students can learn sustainable life skills:
The Human Services Resource Center (HSRC) hosts local cooking classes, which teach students how to cook fresh, healthy meals on a students budget.
Does the institution offer sustainability-focused student employment opportunities?:
A brief description of the sustainability-focused student employment opportunities offered by the institution:
The OSU Sustainability Office, Campus Recycling and the Center for Civic Engagement are dedicated to providing student employment and internship opportunities and do so extensively. All three organizations also offer periodic projects on which students can work.
Does the institution have a graduation pledge through which students pledge to consider social and environmental responsibility in future job and other decisions?:
A brief description of the graduation pledge(s):
A brief description of other co-curricular sustainability programs and initiatives that do not fall into one of the above categories:
The Eco-Reps program is an opportunity for students living in the resident halls to take a leadership role in promoting sustainability among their peers. They help with various programs like hall-wide composting, promote events on campus, and spread information within their halls.
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.