Overall Rating Gold
Overall Score 77.34
Liaison Sally DeLeon
Submission Date Feb. 27, 2022

STARS v2.2

University of Maryland, College Park
EN-9: Staff Professional Development and Training

Status Score Responsible Party
Complete 1.50 / 2.00 Emily Hightower
Sustainability Coordinator
Environmental Safety, Sustainability, and Risk
"---" indicates that no data was submitted for this field

Does the institution make available professional development and training opportunities in sustainability to all non-academic staff at least once per year?:

Does the institution wish to pursue Part 2 of this credit (the rate of staff participation in sustainability professional development and training)?:

Estimated percentage of regular, non-academic staff that participates annually in sustainability professional development and training:

A brief description of any internal sustainability professional development and training opportunities that the institution makes available to non-academic staff:
Professional development at the University of Maryland is strongly emphasized and is included in the university-wide performance review requirements. Units are encouraged to provide professional development opportunities to all employees. The University Human Resources group provides signature courses in addition to seminar series, many of which can include sustainability topics. For example, the regular HR Power Hour Series included two presentations titled “Climate Change - Hope and Solutions,” the UHR Leadership and Talent Development team hosted “The Climate Crisis (A Special Presentation),” and other sustainability trainings in 2020. UMD employees and retirees are offered tuition remission for courses, including those with sustainability content.

Divisional offices also provide professional training and development opportunities. For example, most employees in the University’s Dining Services receive training on sustainable topics including the Cool Food Pledge and waste management (recovery, recycling, and composting). The Department of Facilities Management provides lunch-and-learn training on green building design standards and campus green building requirements to its project managers and other interested University staff. The Department of Energy and Engineering offers frequent training on the TerpFootprints Dashboard so Building Managers can most effectively use the student-developed, faculty-led sustainable building energy dashboard. This department also led the President’s Energy Conservation Initiative Task Force which invited facility managers from all departments on campus to participate and provide information on financing energy conservation initiatives, tools to measure energy consumption on campus, and networking opportunities with technical consultants and faculty experts. The program ran from 2014 to 2020, with the last presentation highlighting successful energy conservation efforts at UMD’s Institute for Bioscience and Biotechnology Research as well as other university efforts to engage building occupants in sustainable building maintenance.

The Division of Student Affairs developed a set of Sustainability Standards which included a section on Education, Training and Outreach (see https://studentaffairs.umd.edu/about-us/divisional-priorities). All staff trained annually on departmental, divisional and campus sustainability goals, practices, behaviors. Within departments, staff receive sustainability training as relevant to their positions and are provided opportunities to learn more about sustainability at the university.

The University Sustainability Fund also provides opportunities for staff members to develop skills and understanding in sustainability-related areas. Staff can apply for funding for projects that promote environmental sustainability and positively impact and enhance the student experience at UMD. This incentive has provided motivation for staff members to explore and train in sustainability topics.

A brief description of any external professional development and training opportunities in sustainability that are supported by the institution :
In addition to in-house professional development and training, the University supports employee professional development by providing opportunities for staff to attend conferences, lectures, and other events or by subsidizing training, certification, or other skills development. For example, all University employees have access to LinkedIn Learning and the many sustainability courses offered. The University also pays for membership to various associations, for example the Association for the Advancement of Sustainability in Higher Education. The membership allows faculty, staff, and students access to the association's resources, professional networks, events, conferences, and other materials.

The Division of Student Affairs provides support for appropriate staff members to remain current with the sustainability trends of applicable “industries” through conference programs, articles, professional associations and other means. Staff are provided specialized training as needed regarding specialized concepts, practices, and equipment management for staff such as HVAC systems, green cleaning, and building dashboard systems.

The Department of Energy and Engineering in Facilities Management provides funding and support for facility managers and campus tradespeople to attend training related to energy conservation, recommissioning and building operation in line with campus sustainability. For example, the Unit helped many staff attend training on the 2020 update of ASHRAE Energy Conservation Codes.

The University of Maryland generally supports professional development, and encourages internal and external PD by providing paid time away and tuition remission to staff at all levels. The USM Board of Regents professional development policy is outlined at: https://www.usmd.edu/regents/bylaws/SectionVII/VII310.pdf

Estimated percentage of regular non-academic staff for which sustainability is included in performance reviews:

A brief description of how sustainability is included in staff performance reviews :
With the University's various commitments to sustainable operations, sustainability is incorporated into the performance expectations of many regular non-academic staff. For some University staff, advancing sustainability at UMD is key focus of their position. For other University staff, UMD's sustainable practices, regulations, and commitments guide day-to-day tasks managing waste, buildings, landscaping, grounds, and other campus operations. For these employees, maintaining sustainable practices is included as a performance expectation.

Website URL where information about staff professional development and training in sustainability is available:

Additional documentation to support the submission:

Data source(s) and notes about 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 or simply email your inquiry to stars@aashe.org.