Overall Rating Silver
Overall Score 56.33
Liaison Ryan Kmetz
Submission Date Feb. 25, 2020

STARS v2.2

University of Maryland, Baltimore County
EN-3: Student Life

Status Score Responsible Party
Complete 2.00 / 2.00
"---" indicates that no data was submitted for this field

Does the institution have an active student group focused on sustainability?:

Name and a brief description of the active student groups focused on sustainability:

1) Students for Environmental Awareness: SEA is a unique community of people spreading the love of our planet to UMBC and beyond! We do that in a lot of ways: We organize fun outdoor service events such as stream cleanups and tree planting. We also raise awareness about important issues both on and off campus by participating in rallies and protests, by tabling at UMBC events, and by petitioning on campus to help students' voices be heard by the outside world. SEA celebrates our love of the planet together with cool activities like zoo trips, hikes, organic and sustainable food, geocaching, and trips to the pumpkin patch! One of our main events each year is Ecofest, a series of events leading up to Earth Day involving free food, music, games, movies, and great people.
2) Environmental Task Force (ETF) is the first student organization at UMBC that inspires students to take action on sustainability issues through service-based activities. We are an organization founded on the idea that service can create change.

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 Garden is a hobby and social action organization dedicated to maintaining a community garden and food forest on campus as well as addressing problems such as food waste and food insecurity through community service events.

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:

OCA Mocha is a student run community engagement and coffee shop in downtown Arbutus, MD. OCHA Mocha is expected to serve as a catalyst that will more closely connect UMBC and its surrounding communities. Students proposed the idea in 2017 of opening a combined office of community affairs/coffee shop where members of the UMBC and local communities could gather to interact with and learn from each other, enjoy some coffee and live entertainment, and attend university- and community-sponsored events. The coffee shop is supporting a local and inclusive economy and only serves Chesapeake Bay Roasting Co. Coffee who is committed to To promote the importance of the Chesapeake Bay Watershed through the sale of our specialty coffees and to encourage local efforts to clean, educate, advocate and enjoy the resource of the Chesapeake Bay.


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:

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:

Harvestfest - An environmentally themed event that happens every fall. Environmental student groups table in the student center to engage and educate fellow peers. "There is an array of student organizations and campus departments offering hands on games, crafts, trivia, and giveaways- including everyone's favorite- our local pumpkins and apples! We'll also have our annual photo booth and sustainability pledge!"

Ecofest- EcoFest is a weeklong series of events, celebrating Earth Day, organized by Students for Environmental Awareness in coordination with other student organization partners such as Environmental Task Force, SGA, The Garden, Just Food UMBC, WMBC, and more. All are welcome to the events including faculty and staff.

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:

Joseph Beuys Tree Partnership Project

2000 – 2001

Joseph Beuys (1921-1986) was an influential German artist who came to prominence in the 1960s. He is known for his performances, sculptures, environments, vitrines, prints, posters, and thousands of drawings. He was a charismatic and controversial artist, a committed teacher, and a political activist. Beuys highlighted the need for greater environmental awareness across the globe through his ongoing social sculpture project entitled, 7000 Oaks. With the help of over 20 organizations in Baltimore, 7000 Oaks inspired the planting of over 350 trees and several stones by over 500 people in Baltimore Parks and at the UMBC sculpture site in 2000.

Baltimore is among the major urban centers to embrace Joseph Beuys’ ideas. Beginning in the fall of 2000, with the help of community volunteers, 242 indigenous trees were planted locally as social sculpture in Patterson Park, Carroll Park, Wyman Park Dell, and at UMBC. During the first phase, the project initiators provided 100 trees each at Patterson and Carroll Parks, 12 trees and 4 stones at Wyman Park Dell, and 30 oak trees and granite stones at UMBC. A special ceremony at each site celebrated the revitalized landscape.
At the Joseph Beuys Sculpture Park at UMBC, there is a bench, which contains a blank journal. This journal provides visitors to the park with a forum in which to write or to sketch. Over the years these public journals were collected, scanned and entries were recorded in spreadsheets. Some of those entries are here for viewing in both spreadsheet form and PDF scans.

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 Conservation and Environmental Research Area (CERA) is a 50 acre area designated for use as both a living lab and outdoor recreation. Leave no trace principals are incorporated into the usage of this area.

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 LEED Certified Patapsco Residence Hall addition features an innovative green roof research platform as part of its focus on sustainable design and construction. Supporting ongoing research efforts by UMBC faculty and students, the project features a green roof and an identically-sized control area, each with dedicated drainage systems and rainwater quantity and quality measurement devices.

UMBC researchers use the data from the system to document annual stormwater retention by the green roof, monitoring runoff from the green and control portions of the roof and comparing them in terms of quantity and quality. This research provides green roof performance data that will be specifically relevant to the mid-Atlantic region and is expected to contribute substantially to our understanding of long-term green roof performance. Stormwater retention totals and storm hydrographs are displayed in real-time in the building lobby and the monitoring facility is available for educational tours for faculty and students.


Does the institution offer sustainability-focused student employment opportunities?:

A brief description of the sustainability-focused student employment opportunities offered by the institution:

Eco-Ambassadors are a team of UMBC students partnering with university sustainability efforts to advance social responsibility and environmental sustainability in the student body. The team educates peers in residential, commuter, academic, and extracurricular settings about environmental solutions in order to empower UMBC to adopt environmentally friendly practices.


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:

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.