|Submission Date||Aug. 21, 2020|
PRE-2: Points of Distinction
Name of the institution’s featured sustainability program, initiative, or accomplishment:
A brief description of the institution’s featured program, initiative, or accomplishment:
In August 2018 our 14 acre, 3 MW solar array went live. When operating at its maximum efficiency, it powers about 30% of our campus, which is equivalent to the electricity used in our residence halls. We're thrilled to have constructed the largest solar array on any college campus in PA but we wanted to take this a step further. The solar array is built on our Center for Environmental Education and Research property and we wanted to limit the amount of greenhouse gas emissions from the maintenance of the property in addition to creating electricity from a renewable source. Having such a large solar array would have entailed a lot of manual mowing due to the low lying nature of the solar panels. Instead, we have partnered with a local sheep farmer to rent a flock of sheep during the growing season. Sheep from Owen's Farm (located in Sunbury, PA) arrived in April 2019 and returned to the farm in Nov. 2019. The sheep returned in April 2020 for their second year of mowing duties. Currently, there are 40 sheep at the solar array and are rotated throughout the property to ensure the sheep eat all vegetation, not just their favorite varieties. In addition to providing low emission landscape management, the sheep have been a favorite sustainability talking point across campus and has raised awareness about sustainability overall.
Which of the following impact areas does the featured program, initiative, or accomplishment most closely relate to?:
Website URL where more information about the accomplishment may be found:
STARS credit in which the featured program, initiative, or accomplishment is reported (if applicable):
A photograph or document associated with the featured program, initiative, or accomplishment:
Name of a second highlighted sustainability program/initiative/accomplishment:
A brief description of the second program/initiative/accomplishment:
Hawk Stuff is our on-campus, free thrift store. It provides a way for students to offload gently used items they no longer want when they move out at he end of the year and avoid adding it to the landfill. Items are collected in the spring and stored until the fall when Hawk Stuff is reopened for students to take whatever they need. The concept was designed by 2 environmental studies majors for an independent study. The Office of Sustainability helped the students implement the idea and have continued to manage Hawk Stuff since the students graduated. Hawk Stuff has been a wonderful addition to our campus sustainability efforts, not only do students get excited about getting free stuff they can use, faculty and staff have enthusiastically participated by donating all sorts of unused items from around their houses. In Fall of 2019, 240 students took items out of Hawk Stuff.
Which impact areas does the second program/initiative/accomplishment most closely relate to?:
Website URL where more information about the second program/initiative/accomplishment may be found:
STARS credit in which the second program/initiative/accomplishment is reported (if applicable):
A photograph or document associated with the second program/initiative/accomplishment:
Name of a third highlighted program/initiative/accomplishment:
A brief description of the third program/initiative/accomplishment:
The Office of Sustainability hires Sustainability Project Leaders (SPLs) every year to help create programming and run sustainability initiatives on campus. These positions are a crucial part of our campus engagement strategy. SPLs have created our Terracycle Program, manage Hawk Stuff, organized our Sustainable Food Fair, developed our GIS based interactive sustainability map, create programming for first year students, athletes, and Greek Life, and calculated our sustainable purchases from Dining Services for OP 7. They are instrumental in spreading the word about our sustainability efforts throughout the student body. We have rapidly grown the program from 2 SPLs in the spring of 2018 to 8 in the spring of 2020. The Office of Sustainability trains the SPLs throughout the year during their bi-weekly staff meetings on topics ranging from communication and leadership, to the best sustainability practices and AASHE STARS.
Which impact areas does the third program/initiative/accomplishment most closely relate to?:
Website URL where more information about the third program/initiative/accomplishment may be found:
STARS credit in which the third program/initiative/accomplishment is reported (if applicable):
A photograph or document associated with the third program/initiative/accomplishment: