|Overall Rating||Silver - expired|
|Submission Date||Dec. 18, 2015|
University of Nevada Las Vegas
EN-3: Student Life
|1.75 / 2.00||
Solid Waste and Recycling Manager
Rebel Recycling Program/FMA
Does the institution have one or more co-curricular sustainability programs and initiatives that fall into the following categories?:
|Yes or No|
|Active student groups focused on sustainability||Yes|
|Gardens, farms, community supported agriculture (CSA) or fishery programs, or urban agriculture projects where students are able to gain experience in organic agriculture and sustainable food systems||Yes|
|Student-run enterprises that include sustainability as part of their mission statements or stated purposes||No|
|Sustainable investment funds, green revolving funds or sustainable microfinance initiatives through which students can develop socially, environmentally and fiscally responsible investment and financial skills||No|
|Conferences, speaker series, symposia or similar events related to sustainability that have students as the intended audience||Yes|
|Cultural arts events, installations or performances related to sustainability that have students as the intended audience||Yes|
|Wilderness or outdoors programs that follow Leave No Trace principles||Yes|
|Sustainability-related themes chosen for themed semesters, years, or first-year experiences||No|
|Programs through which students can learn sustainable life skills||No|
|Sustainability-focused student employment opportunities offered by the institution||Yes|
|Graduation pledges through which students pledge to consider social and environmental responsibility in future job and other decisions||No|
|Other co-curricular sustainability programs and initiatives||Yes|
The name and a brief description of each student group focused on sustainability:
1) UNLV Take Back the Tap (TBTT) Campaign
This is a student group focused on the reduction of plastic water bottles at the university level. TBTT works closely with UNLV Sustainability initiatives and ensures that there are events related to sustainability each semester to engage student involvement. In addition to working on events, TBTT visits classes often to educate the student body further on its mission statement and sustainability as a whole. (https://www.facebook.com/tbttunlv.chapter?fref=ts)
2) United States Green Building Council (USGBC) Student Chapter
UNLV's student chapter's mission aligns with the U.S. Green Building Council's mission to transform the way buildings and communities are designed, built and operated, enabling an environmentally and socially responsible, healthy, and prosperous environment that improves the quality of life. The U.S. Green Building Council Student Chapter at University of Nevada, Las Vegas is a university-based program that seeks to utilize the skill set from students of all majors in the application of sustainable design practices, while opening doors to potential employers and preparing them for future careers. (https://www.facebook.com/pages/UNLV-USGBC-Student-Chapter/108766369144560?sk=info&ref=page_internal)
3) Global Water Brigades (GWB)
UNLV's GWB's purpose is to spread awareness about water-related issues on a global scale. In August of 2013, GWB volunteered in Honduras. Water Brigade volunteers will spend 7 days in Honduras implementing a water system to prevent water related illnesses in a community with limited access to a sufficient quantity and quality of clean water. Volunteers receive a comprehensive introduction to the water issues by seeing the community’s current water situation first hand, and meeting and discussing the issues with community members and leaders. With a holistic understanding of the community’s challenges and the Water Brigades’ solution, volunteers work side-by-side with community members to construct the new water system. Volunteers may work on a piping system, water storage unit, small dam, water treatment unit or another infrastructural project. Additionally volunteers partner with the community’s Basic Sanitation Committee and provide education and training to proliferate knowledge about proper water use, and proper sanitation and hygiene practices. With a sufficient quantity of properly treated water and proper sanitation and hygiene practices, community members can cut off the connection between water and illness and ultimately live healthier and more productive lives. (https://www.facebook.com/UNLVGWB)
4) Las Vegas Worker Ownership Resources and Cooperative Services (LVWORCS)
UNLV's LVWORCS' vision is cultivating an environmentally sustainable community and thriving cooperative economy through dignified labor, workplace democracy and 100% worker-owned businesses. Their mission is to transform the UNLV campus and Las Vegas community through: teaching cooperative principles, promoting economic fairness, growing an environmentally sustainable local economy, creating lasting economic opportunity and local wealth by incubating worker cooperatives. Their principles is "Building a More Sustainable Las Vegas Community through Economic Cooperation and Local Ownership." (www.LVWORCS.us)
5) Shine City Project
Since the start of Shine City Project, the organization has helped maintained the cleanliness of Las Vegas by performing weekly cleanups around the city and in surrounding areas such as Mt. Charleston and Lake Mead. The organization hopes to inspire others to take greater responsibility for the city they live in and change Las Vegas from being known as Sin City to Shine City. The organization is student-governed.
6) Collegiate Association for the Research of Principles (CARP)
CARP, also known as the Collegiate Association for the Research of Principles, hopes to establish a culture of heart in Las Vegas by providing education to overcome a self-centered lifestyle by teaching to live for the sake of the greater good. CARP hopes to build model leaders who can truly impact and inspire others in the community to do the same. The organization is student-governed.
The website URL where information about student groups is available:
A brief description of gardens, farms, community supported agriculture (CSA) or fishery programs, and urban agriculture projects where students are able to gain experience in organic agriculture and sustainable food systems:
UNLV Sustainability, the Office of Civic Engagement and Diversity (OCED) and UNLV Facilities Management are building a Campus Community Garden. The garden is in the building phase presently, but will be done by the end of March 2015, and should open to the campus community in August 2015. The garden has already had numerous inputs by students including two semesters of class projects by an entire class in a Civil & Environmental Engineering & Construction course. Students in a landscape architecture class spent a semester designing the garden and a semester working on the storm water management and other aspects of the final design. One student did her capstone project on the garden. Multiple student groups have helped build aspects of the garden. There is a garden committee with student members and a wide range of UNLV employees. Currently, a UNLV Graduate Student is working on the establishment and operation of the garden. He research is focused on effects of gardening in K-12 curriculum. Next semester, 41 groups will be gardening in the Campus Community Garden and research projects will be a part of the garden.
The website URL where information about the organic agriculture and/or sustainable food systems projects and initiatives is available:
A brief description of student-run enterprises that include sustainability as part of their mission statements or stated purposes:
The website URL where information about the student-run enterprise(s) is available:
A brief description of the sustainable investment or finance initiatives:
The website URL where information about the sustainable investment or finance initiatives is available:
A brief description of conferences, speaker series, symposia or similar events related to sustainability that have students as the intended audience:
There have been multiple conferences, speaker series, symposia and/or events that have been related to sustainability that have students as the intended audience.
1) UNLV's TEDx
In the spirit of ideas worth spreading, TEDx is a program of local, self-organized events that bring people together to share a TED-like experience. At a TEDx event, TEDTalks video and live speakers combine to spark deep discussion and connection in a small group. These local, self-organized events are branded TEDx, where x = independently organized TED event. The TED Conference provides general guidance for the TEDx program, but individual TEDx events are self-organized.
2) Take Back the Tap's Documentary and Panel Discussion
Every fall semester, Take Back the Tap sponsors an educational documentary on water as a commodity versus water as a necessity as well as dig deeper into the ill-effects plastics has on our environment and health. After the documentary, an esteemed panel answers audience questions.
3) REVIVE ART EXHIBITION
Take Back the Tap hosted an event that strung artists from various types of media together to share each own's meaning and discovery of sustainability. During this event, it was also integrated into the Food and Water Watch Contest, Tap-a-Palooza where Take Back the Tap was able to win $1500 for a hydration station for UNLV.
4)Brookings Mountain West
Brookings Mountain West hosts a variety of meetings and events, including lectures, seminars, conferences, and forums. Brookings Scholars visit UNLV to offer public lectures, engage with UNLV faculty and students on collaborative research, and meet local, regional, and state leaders in business, government, and social services. Public lectures presented by Brookings scholars are free and open to the public.
Brookings Mountain West is a partnership between UNLV and the prestigious Washington, D.C.-based Brookings Institution. The purpose of the initiative is to bring Brookings' high-quality, independent, and impactful research to the issues facing the dynamic and fast-growing Intermountain West region. The new initiative builds upon the work of Brookings' Metropolitan Policy Program, which focuses on helping metropolitan areas like Las Vegas grow in robust, inclusive, and sustainable ways.
5) Clean Energy Summit
The National Clean Energy Summit has been the national stage for clean energy development discussions for seven years and serves as the country’s most visible and influential gathering of leaders and top policymakers. The day-long clean energy summit is cosponsored by Senate Majority Leader Harry Reid (D-NV), the Center for American Progress, the Clean Energy Project, MGM Resorts International, and the University of Nevada, Las Vegas.
The University of Nevada, Las Vegas, or UNLV, offers a broad range of respected academic programs and is increasingly recognized as a premier metropolitan research university. The university is ranked in the category of "high research activity" by the Carnegie Foundation for the Advancement of Teaching. With approximately 22,000 undergraduate students and 6,000 graduate/professional students, UNLV offers close to 120 graduate degree programs, including 36 doctoral and professional degrees. The university employs over 3,100 faculty and staff, and Dr. Neal J. Smatresk has served as president since his appointment in August of 2009.
6) Preserve Nevada
Preserve Nevada hosted a historic preservation-sustainability symposium on sustainable building rehabilitation, distributed and large scale renewable energy, and federal and state land use policy. (Source: http://www.preservenevada.org/symposium/).
7)UNLV Public History Program
Established in 2000, the public history program at UNLV blends theory and practice in innovative and unconventional ways. From the seminar room to the field, this program trains graduate students to merge academic research and hands-on training; it integrates courses on historic and cultural preservation with environmental topics and material culture studies; it collaborates with experts and organizations at UNLV, in the larger Las Vegas community, and beyond. Public history students hail from diverse backgrounds — law, the social sciences, the performing arts, public health, education, business—but they share a common goal: to move beyond the confines of the traditional historical inquiry and application.
The UNLV Public History program has a unique and active partnership with the only statewide preservation organization, Preserve Nevada. Additionally, UNLV is also the home to the Southwest Oral History Association (SOHA) and public history graduate students are active participants in its administration.
The website URL where information about the event(s) is available:
A brief description of cultural arts events, installations or performances related to sustainability that have students as the intended audience:
REVIVE: A Sustainability Art Exhibit
In honor of UNLV's Festival of Communities and GreenFest events, UNLV's Take Back the Tap with help from the Rebel Recycling Program and UNLV's Global Water Brigades bring to the UNLV and Las Vegas community an art exhibition with a sustainability theme. The goal of this event is to bring awareness to issues related to sustainability and to showcase someone's vision of "sustainability" through any art medium. Artwork and musical talent will be from UNLV and from other schools and organizations throughout the valley. Some of the participating schools are Liberty High School and K.O. Knudson Middle School. This interactive event also included a booth that allowed students to transform their own sustainable vision by creating works of art with reused materials. UNLV Dining also provided free food demonstrating ways to reduce your carbon footprint when organizing events. Take Back the Tap also integrated a side competition called Tap-A-Palooza, where student chapters of Take Back the Tap from all over the country participate by receiving the most votes via text message in order to win $1500 for a new hydration station. UNLV's Take Back the Tap was able to win this competition as there was a high range support from students.
The website URL where information about the cultural arts event(s) is available:
A brief description of wilderness or outdoors programs for students that follow Leave No Trace principles:
There are three main outdoor programs that UNLV coordinates each semester through PEX Courses. They are the following:
Canoeing The Black Canyon
This introductory canoeing course on the Colorado River in the Black Canyon area is an experientially based excursion focusing on the basic skills necessary to safely plan, prepare for, and embark on short-stay overnight trips by waterways to wild lands where emergency medical care can be delayed. Safe travel, sun safety, camping skills, equipment selection and operation, Leave No Trace minimum impact principles, and sound decision-making are all introduced as foundational skills for safe and responsible travel in this course. Each participant will learn the different paddling strokes, leave no trace principles, emergency rescue techniques, and limited wilderness first aid skills prior to departure. Students will apply their knowledge learned in the classroom while we paddle on the Colorado river 8 miles to our camping destination the 1st day, 4 miles to additional destinations the 2nd day, and 8 miles back to Willow Beach on the 3rd day where we will load our equipment and head back to UNLV. Students should expect to be challenged and to get outside of their comfort zone.
Desert Hiking and Survival Skills
This introductory backpacking course is an experientially based backcountry excursion focusing on their basic skills necessary to safely plan, prepare for , and embark on short-stay overnight trips to wild lands where emergency medical care can be delayed. Safe travel, camping skills, equipment selection and operation, Leave No Trace minimum impact principles, and sound decision-making are all introduced as foundational skills for safe and responsible backcountry travel in this course. Each participant will carry ~35lbs in their backpack, while camping in the back-country (i.e. not in established campgrounds), and will be hiking ~6~8 miles. Students should expect to be challenged and to get outside of their comfort zone.
Backcountry Hiking and Camping
This introductory backpacking course is an experientially based backcountry excursion focusing on the basic skills necessary to safely plan, prepare for, and embark on short-stay overnight trips to wild lands where emergency medical care can be delayed. Safe travel, camping skills, equipment selection and operation. Leave No Trace minimum impact principles, and sound decision making are all introduced as foundational skills for safe and responsible backcountry travel in this course. Each participant will carry ~35lbs in their backpack, while camping in the back country (i.e. not in established campgrounds), and will be hiking ~6~8 miles each day for a total of 24-32 miles. Students should expect to be challenged and to get outside of their comfort zone.
The website URL where information about the wilderness or outdoors program(s) is available:
A brief description of sustainability-related themes chosen for themed semesters, years, or first-year experiences:
The website URL where information about the theme is available:
A brief description of program(s) through which students can learn sustainable life skills:
Students can learn sustainable life skills through the UNLV Dining's e-newsletter, through active participation in Take Back the Tap, through various programs such as Alternative Breaks Program, Lake Mead Program, and the Wetlands Program.
The website URL where information about the sustainable life skills program(s) is available:
A brief description of sustainability-focused student employment opportunities:
The UNLV Rebel Recycling Program employs 11 student workers for its daily operations and collection. The Sustainability Program has four internships this year and had three internships last year relating to sustainability. These internships are funded through the Regents Service Program. This year, we have one undergraduate working on post-consumer composting collection and a green event certification program. We have another undergraduate working on a green office certification program. A third undergraduate is working on stadium recycling for our two stadiums. The last position is a graduate student who is working on our campus community garden project.
The website URL where information about the student employment opportuntities is available:
A brief description of graduation pledges through which students pledge to consider social and environmental responsibility in future job and other decisions:
The website URL where information about the graduation pledge program is available:
A brief description of other co-curricular sustainability programs and initiatives:
Service Learning for Students
UNLV has a number of courses in which students serve the local community as a part of the learning process. There are numerous benefits to taking a service learning course.
What students can expect from a service-learning course:
*Valuable experiences that directly impact a population in our community.
*The opportunity to connect the service experience to course objectives.
*The chance to step out of one's comfort zone and experience the community like students never have before.
*The opportunity to practice professional skills; community organizations will expect students to show up on time, communicate professionally, and meet deadlines and goals.
*Clear direction and training; students will participate in an orientation to learn about the organization’s mission, impact, and protocol for volunteers.
The website URL where information about other co-curricular sustainability programs and initiatives 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.