|Submission Date||Oct. 10, 2014|
University of Alberta
PAE-19: Community Sustainability Partnerships
Chief Sustainability Officer
Office of Sustainability
Does the institution participate in community sustainability partnerships that meet the criteria for this credit?:
A brief description of the institution’s sustainability partnerships with the local community:
COMMUNITY PARTNERSHIP 1: ALBERTA CLIMATE DIALOGUE
The Alberta Climate Dialogue (ABCD) is a five-year project exploring how direct participation by citizens in problem-solving and decision-making activities can enhance society’s ability to respond effectively on climate issues in Alberta. As part of ABCD, thousands of Albertans will take part in public deliberations that build understanding about the scientific, economic, social, and individual aspects of climate change. The goal of ABCD is to make a positive difference in how Albertans understand and respond to climate change, and to transform how Alberta municipalities and the provincial government engage citizens to solve tough environmental issues. Strategic program areas include: supporting more effective citizen engagement practices in Alberta; exploring the role of citizen engagement for better climate responses; and building capacity for citizen engagement on climate issues in Alberta. This community-university research alliance brings together citizens engagement practitioners, researchers from 21 universities, and leader from Alberta municipalities, industries, environmental groups, and provincial government departments. ABCD is part of the Social Sciences and Humanities Research Council of Canada’s Community-University Research Alliance Program (SSHRC-CURA).
COMMUNITY PARTNERSHIP 2: COMMUNITY SERVICE-LEARNING
Community Service-Learning (CSL) links academic coursework to community-based experiences. The CSL program has an umbrella partnership with the Edmonton Chamber of Voluntary Organizations. In addition, the program has partnered with more than 100 community organizations in and around Edmonton. Community partners describe their volunteer and research needs to the CSL program office, and instructors design course projects and goals to integrate these community-based experiences into their course curriculum. When enrolled in a CSL class, students participate in a community project that is both relevant to the course content and useful to partnering non-profit organizations. By completing a number of courses with a CSL component, students can earn a Certificate in Community Engagement and Service-Learning upon graduation. During the 2011-2012 academic year, 65 CSL courses were offered and a number of them explicitly address and involve students in sustainability issues (such as the course Plate, Planet and Society in the Faculty of ALES and the Sustainability and Responsible Marketing course in the Faculty of Business). The CSL program also sponsors Humanities 101, a community-based outreach program that offers free non-credit university-level courses for people living in Edmonton’s downtown and surrounding areas who are passionate about learning and knowledge, especially those whose economic situation, academic experience, financial and social well-being are compromised. The program also provides senior undergraduate and graduate students with experience teaching in the community.
COMMUNITY PARTNERSHIP 3 : UNIVERSAL TRANSIT PASS
The Universal Transit Pass (U-Pass) is partnership of the university’s student associations, the local transit authorities (City of Edmonton and St. Albert and County of Strathcona) and the University of Alberta to deliver affordable and sustainable transit to the UAlberta. All students pay a low mandatory U-Pass fee each fall and winter term, which is much lower than the cost of purchasing monthly passes for the same period of time because costs are spread over a large participant base. UAlberta subsidizes the U-Pass program, covering 16 per cent of the U-Pass fee to reduce the price, investing in sustainable transportation options for students. All students registered on-campus in at least one for-credit course at UAlberta's Edmonton campuses during the Fall and/or Winter term are eligible for the U-Pass. When the U-Pass was implemented in the Fall of 2007, Edmonton Transit increased service levels for routes serving UAlberta and Grant MacEwan University campuses. This included over 400 additional service hours, three new routes, and 19 additional buses during peak periods. Edmonton Transit has attributed a 12 per cent increase in their service demand to the U-Pass implementation.
COMMUNITY PARTNERSHIP 4: CENTRE FOR APPLIED BUSINESS RESEARCH IN ENERGY AND THE ENVIRONMENT
The Centre for Applied Business Research in Energy and the Environment (CABREE) is a nonpartisan, independent research centre located in the Alberta School of Business at the University of Alberta. CABREE is dedicated to providing applied economic analysis to inform public policy debates on issues of vital importance to Alberta and Canada as a whole. CABREE works with QUEST (Quality Urban Energy Systems of Tomorrow), a Canadian leader in promoting ICES in Canada. One major partnership of CABREE is its work with governments, developers, and energy companies on Integrated Community Energy Systems in Canada (ICES). One example of CABREE’s work with ICES includes a project with the City of Yellowknife for preparation and development of their community energy system using a reclaimed gold mine as a chief energy source. This will be one of the most extensive and unique ICES’ project in Canada. CABREE is also extensively involved in provincial water management at several levels. CABREE has recently worked with partners in Alberta Environment, Urban Systems, and Alberta’s Air Shed Zones and Watershed Planning and Advisory Councils to develop more effective ways of managing for achieving environmental outcomes and benefits in water and air. To promote strategic conversations and reflection on critical energy development and environmental issues, CABREE has partnered with several groups, including the Office of Sustainability, and to host a web-broadcasted energy talk series.
ADDITIONAL COMMUNITY PARTNERSHIPS:
Humanities 101 is a community-based outreach program designed to ensure that community members have access to educational experiences. The program offers free non-credit university-level courses for people living in Edmonton’s downtown and surrounding areas, especially those whose economic situation, academic experience, financial and social well-being are compromised. Humanities 101 provides non-vocational training that aims to empower students to use critical thinking in everyday life and inspire a passion for lifelong learning.
A partnership between UAlberta's Community Service-Learning program and The Learning Centre Literacy Association, Humanities 101 offers courses each semester at St. John's Institute. Past courses include: Native Studies, An Introduction to the Humanities, Stories & Communities, and Education & Society.
SUSTAINABILITY SPEAKER SERIES
The Office of Sustainability, in collaboration with various campus and off-campus organizations, presents the Sustainability Speaker Series. Community partners have included the City of Edmonton and the Alberta Climate Dialogue. The series brings renowned leaders from all over the world to speak on sustainability issues such as waste, energy, water management and leadership. Lectures are public, open to University of Alberta students, faculty, staff and community members. The Sustainability Speaker Series gives people the opportunity to be exposed to new ideas, promote understanding about the diversity of topics involved in sustainability and expand the dialogue on campus sustainability
COMMUNITY-UNIVERSITY PARTNERSHIP FOR THE STUDY OF CHILDREN, YOUTH, AND FAMILIES (CUP)
The Community-University Partnership (CUP) is a unique collaboration among UAlberta, community agencies, and organizations in and around Edmonton, including Early Child Development Mapping Project (ECMAP) and Families First Edmonton (FFE).
GREENING THE AVENUE
The University of Alberta’s Energy Club collaborates with Greening the Avenue, a non-profit organization with a mandate to improve the energy efficiency of buildings on Whyte Avenue in Edmonton
ALBERTA RURAL DEVELOPMENT NETWORK
The University of Alberta is a partner in the Alberta Rural Development Network, a not-for-profit partnership of Alberta’s 21 public colleges, universities, and technical institutes that assists in the development of rural Alberta through education, research, collaboration, and networking.
ELLERSLIE RESEARCH STATION
The Ellerslie Research Station is a partnership with industry and government, and serves as the primary field operations facility from which agricultural, environmental, and forestry field teaching and research needs can be serviced throughout the province.
GREEN & GOLD COMMUNITY GARDEN
The Green & Gold Garden is a joint project of the School of Public Health and the Faculty of Agricultural, Life, and Environmental Sciences at UAlberta and the greater Edmonton community. The garden is run entirely by volunteers and all proceeds for produce go to the Tubahumarize Association, a Rwanda-based not-for-profit organization that supports socially and economically marginalized women.
MEMORANDUM OF AGREEMENT WITH THE BATTLE RIVER SCHOOL DIVISION
Augustana Campus has signed an agreement with the Battle River School division which outlines educational partnerships between the UAlberta and the schools, such as Reading University, a summer reading support program for third-grade students.
CAMROSE MUNICIPAL SUSTAINABILITY PLAN
The City of Camrose has partnered with Augustana Campus to work towards creating a plan that will shape A sustainable future for the city.
INSTITUTE FOR CONTINUING CARE EDUCATION AND RESEARCH
The Institute for Continuing Care Education and Research (ICCER) is a collaborative endeavour between the Augustana Campus' Alberta Centre for Sustainable Rural Communities, NorQuest College, CapitalCare, Alberta Health Services, the Excel Society, and the Bethany Society. ICCER will provide an ideal environment to create synergies, resulting in leading edge research and evidence, and allowing for innovation and the implementation of best practices. SUSTAINABLE RESOURCES LTD. University of Alberta Augustana’s Alberta Centre for Sustainable Rural Communities collaborated with Sustainable Resources Ltd. to examine what successful rural communities have done to balance water usage with commercial and population growth.
UAlberta's Devonian Botanic Garden partners with the Edmonton Community Foundation and local schools to offer Green School, a free program that immerses a classroom of 4th, 5th, or 6th graders in the natural world for five consecutive school days.
RACISM FREE EDMONTON
The Faculty of Extension participates, along with 14 other community partners, in Racism Free Edmonton, a program that promotes respect, understanding, and appreciation of cultural diversity and the inclusion of Aboriginal and other racialized communities into the social, economic, and political fabric of the municipality.
GLOBAL, ENVIRONMENTAL, & OUTDOOR EDUCATION COUNCIL (GEOEC)
UAlberta's Faculty of Physical Education engages students with GEOEC, a specialist council of the Alberta Teachers’ Association, to promote professional development for teachers.
AUGUSTANA CAMPUS QUAD WATER DISPLAY
UAlberta's Facilities and Operations planted native vegetation surrounding a water feature in Quad in 2010; the university partners with local high schools to incorporate these plants as a teaching aid in the classroom.
CAMROSE BRIDGE REPLACEMENT
UAlberta's Facilities and Operations partnered with the City of Camrose to replace a bridge on campus that would retain the natural look of the ravine, and the project has successfully moved to original goals with a naturalized environment, open use by the community, and use by wildlife.
CAMROSE PERFORMING ARTS CENTRE
The Performing Arts Centre Camrose was built through a collaborative effort between the University of Alberta, the City of Camrose, Camrose County, and the Province of Alberta. The Centre will allow the area’s lovers of arts and culture to access live performance and performing space. This centre contains Canada's largest building-integrated solar photo-voltaic system. The Camrose Performing Arts Centre (CPAC) on Augustana Campus earned four Green Globes™, the highest level of achievement under the Green Globes™ green building certification system.
The website URL where information about sustainability partnerships is available:
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.