Overall Rating Gold
Overall Score 66.24
Liaison Justin Mog
Submission Date Feb. 27, 2019
Executive Letter Download

STARS v2.1

University of Louisville
EN-7: Employee Educators Program

Status Score Responsible Party
Complete 3.00 / 3.00 Brian Barnes
Professor & EcoReps Director
Philosophy
"---" indicates that no data was submitted for this field

Total number of employees (staff + faculty, headcount):
7702

Number of employees served (i.e. directly targeted) by a peer-to-peer sustainability outreach and education program (avoid double-counting):
7702

Percentage of employees served by a peer-to-peer educator program:
100

Name of the employee educators program:
EcoReps

Number of employees served (i.e. directly targeted) by the program (headcount):
7702

A brief description of the program, including examples of peer-to-peer outreach activities:

EcoReps is an 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 and monthly in-person workshop series focused on topics in sustainability, particularly as they apply at UofL.

Once you become an EcoRep, 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 EcoReps 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.

EcoReps stand for sustainable action, so we also encourage participants to actively demonstrate their personal commitment in those places where they can have the most impact. EcoReps are not “green police.” Eco-Reps are educators and mentors. As an EcoRep, 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. EcoReps should also be a voice for sound practices regarding our campus environment, its inhabitants, and the planet at large. EcoReps should always strive to “practice what they preach” and to lead by example.

EcoReps are expected to attend our monthly workshops to expand their exposure to sustainability concepts and locals making a difference. There they can discuss their own sustainability activities in a public forum (with a free vegetarian lunch!), and report on their activities and ideas about sustainable practices to UofL's Sustainability Council. We also expect EcoReps to submit a brief monthly report designed to help everyone brainstorm and document more effective strategies for EcoReps representation across campus.

EcoReps also engage in group service projects to engage the community around UofL in some highly visible and meaningful efforts. EcoReps are encouraged to partner with Recognized Student Organizations, Campus Housing, 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 employee educators are selected:

They are recruited through new employee orientation sessions, professional development in sustainability trainings, existing sustainability organizations on campus, and campus-wide media such as UofL Today.


A brief description of the formal training that the employee educators receive to prepare them to conduct peer outreach:

At the core of the program is an online training series focused on topics in sustainability, particularly as they apply at UofL. In September 2014, the training series was nationally recognized with the 2014 Multimedia MVP2 (Most-Valuable Pollution Prevention) Award for best video series with a Major Impact on Preventing Pollution from the National Pollution Prevention Roundtable.

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 EcoReps 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.

Those interested in going deeper can also explore Advanced Sustainability Topics through the EcoReps Advanced training 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. Participants then explore a set of supplemental materials on the topic and develop a proposal for a community project. Proposals are reviewed by the EcoReps faculty director. If approved, the project is conducted under the supervision of an EcoReps mentor.

The EcoReps 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 a peer-to-peer educator in sustainability practices at UofL.


A brief description of the financial and/or administrative support the institution provides to the program (e.g. annual budget and/or paid faculty/staff coordination):

The EcoReps program is run by UofL's Sustainability Council and funded through our Climate Action Plan which pays one part-time faculty member $10,000 to develop and staff the program as director year-round. The Assistant to the Provost for Sustainability Initiatives also devotes staff time to develop and support the program. A volunteer EcoReps coordinator position is also filled by a graduate student. In the recently approved 2019 Climate Action Plan budget, and additional $1000 has been committed by the university to pay for EcoReps training video production, workshops, service activities, tools & supplies.


Name of the employee educators program (2nd program):
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Number of employees served (i.e. directly targeted) by the program (headcount) (2nd program):
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A brief description of the program, including examples of peer-to-peer outreach activities (2nd program):
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A brief description of how the employee educators are selected (2nd program):
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A brief description of the formal training that the employee educators receive to prepare them to conduct peer outreach (2nd program):
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A brief description of the financial and/or administrative support the institution provides to the program (e.g. annual budget and/or paid faculty/staff coordination) (2nd program):
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A brief description of all other employee peer-to-peer sustainability outreach and education programs, including the number of employees served and how employee educators are selected, trained, and supported by the institution:
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Total number of hours employee educators are engaged in peer-to-peer sustainability outreach and education activities annually:
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The website URL where information about the programs or initiatives is available:
Additional documentation to support the submission:
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UofL's Sustainability Council launched its peer-to-peer Eco-Reps program for all employees and students in the fall 2012 semester.

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.