Overall Rating Silver - expired
Overall Score 58.29
Liaison Justin Mog
Submission Date Feb. 6, 2013
Executive Letter Download

STARS v1.2

University of Louisville
ER-1: Student Sustainability Educators Program

Status Score Responsible Party
Complete 5.00 / 5.00 Justin Mog
Assistant to the Provost for Sustainability Initiatives
Office of the Provost
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Total number of degree-seeking students enrolled at the institution:
21,380

Program name (1st program):
Eco-Reps

Number of students served by the program to whom peer-to-peer sustainability outreach and education is offered (1st program):
21,380

A brief description of the program, including examples of peer-to-peer outreach activities (1st program):

Eco-Reps is a new, ongoing peer-to-peer sustainability outreach and education program for all students, faculty, and staff at UofL. At the core of the program is an online training series focused on topics in sustainability, particularly as they apply at UofL.

Once you become an Eco-Rep, you’re expected to serve as a resource person for sustainability in your sub-community at UofL, whether it’s your immediate peers and colleagues, your department, your building, your club, your residence hall, or any other realm where you live, work, and play. We encourage Eco-Reps to become conscious of the specific physical and social systems in their own departments or residence halls, and to help their peers understand the options and advantages of more sustainable solutions during planning meetings or when designing systems.

Eco-Reps stand for sustainable action, so we also encourage you to actively demonstrate your personal commitment in those places where you can have the most impact. Eco-Reps are not “green police.” Eco-Reps are educators and mentors. As an Eco-Rep, you should feel free to politely observe and make note of problem behaviors or unsustainable systems, but you should always be courteous, respectful and supportive rather than punitive. It’s important to remain sensitive to the university's policies and structure. Eco-Reps should also be a voice for sound practices regarding our campus environment, its inhabitants, and the planet at large. Eco-Reps should always strive to “practice what they preach” and to lead by example.

Eco-Reps are expected to attend three meetings per semester to discuss your own sustainability activities in a public forum (with food!), and at least once per year, each Eco-Rep will report on your activities and ideas about sustainable practices to UofL's Sustainability Council. We also expect you to submit a brief monthly report designed to help everyone brainstorm and document more effective strategies for Eco-Reps representation across campus.

Eco-Reps also engage in an annual project to be decided by the current Eco-Reps at the beginning of each fall semester. The projects should engage the community around UofL in some highly visible and meaningful efforts. Eco-Reps are encouraged to partner with RSOs, Residence Life, the Student, Staff, and Faculty Senates, and other campus organizations to spread the word about sustainability on campus, and to help identify opportunities to engage with sustainability.


A brief description of how the student educators are selected (1st program):

The are recruited through presentations to sustainability-related classes, existing sustainability-related clubs and organizations on campus, and campus-wide media such as the student news feed.


A brief description of the formal training that the student educators receive (1st program):

At the core of the program is an online training series focused on topics in sustainability, particularly as they apply at UofL. The series is not intended to be exhaustive concerning sustainability as a whole, nor any individual topic, but the intent is to empower and educate our students, staff, and faculty about the different ways UofL is addressing sustainability and what the UofL community must do in order to help move forward.

There are two tiers of training for Eco-Reps at the University of Louisville - both a Basic and an Advanced program. The Basic training includes a series of videos and accompanying supplementary materials available online. Participants are encouraged to register for the written examination for Eco-Reps Basic certification. Certified Eco-Reps then educate peers at UofL, lead workshops, and offer their expertise to community projects both on and off campus.

Those interested in going deeper can also become certified in Advanced Sustainability Topics through the Eco-Reps Advanced certification program. The Advanced program offers serious sustainability advocates the opportunity to work with a UofL mentor in a particular sustainability area to develop a focused project that addresses the needs of the university or wider community. The Advanced program begins with video training about a particular topic, such as bicycling for transportation, making solar panels, or vermiculture. You’ll then explore a set of supplemental materials on the topic and develop a proposal for a community project. Proposals will be reviewed by the Sustainability Council and the Eco-Reps mentor. If approved, the project will be conducted under the supervision of an Eco-Reps mentor. After successful implementation, you’ll receive an Eco-Reps Advanced certification in the special topic and will be listed on UofL's Sustainability website as being among UofL's advanced community mentors available for consultation.

The Eco-Reps training program at UofL relies upon a video series and supplementary materials to create an action-oriented educational experience for anyone interested in sustainability initiatives at UofL. Taken together, the series is intended to prepare you for becoming certified in sustainability practices at UofL. There is one examination for the entire Basic Eco-Reps training series.


A brief description of the staff and/or other financial support the institution provides to the program (1st program):

The Eco-Reps program is run by UofL's Sustainability Council and funded through our Climate Action Plan which pays one part-time faculty member to develop and staff the program as coordinator year-round. The Assistant to the Provost for Sustainability Initiatives also devotes staff time to develop and support the program.


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UofL's Sustainability Council launched its new peer-to-peer Eco-Reps program for all employees and students in the fall 2012 semester.
Student enrollment numbers are from the fall 2012 semester, as reported here: http://louisville.edu/institutionalresearch/institutional-research-planning/Just%20the%20Facts%202013%20Use%20this%20one.pdf

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.