Overall Rating Gold
Overall Score 66.51
Liaison Aurora Sharrard
Submission Date Feb. 28, 2021

STARS v2.2

University of Pittsburgh
EN-10: Community Partnerships

Status Score Responsible Party
Complete 3.00 / 3.00 Erika Ninos
Sustainability Program Coordinator
PittServes
"---" indicates that no data was submitted for this field

Name of the institution’s formal community partnership to advance sustainability :
Clutter for a Cause (Oakland Planning and Development Corporation + Pitt's Student Office of Sustainability-

Does the institution provide financial or material support for the partnership? :
Yes

Which of the following best describes the partnership timeframe?:
Multi-year or ongoing

Which of the following best describes the partnership?:
Sustainability-focused

Are underrepresented groups and/or vulnerable populations engaged as equal partners? :
Yes

A brief description of the institution’s formal community partnership to advance sustainability:

Oakland Planning and Development Corporation (OPDC) is a nonprofit community development organization serving Pittsburgh's vibrant cultural, educational and medical hub since 1980. The Student Office of Sustainability (SOOS) at the University of Pittsburgh was founded in 2014. One of core tenants of the SOOS is community outreach through sustainability focused programs.

In Summer 2018, these two entities joined forces for the first time to host an off-campus “Clutter for a Cause” collection. Since then, Clutter for a Cause has become Pitt’s annual move-out donation drive.

During Clutter for a Cause, students donate clothing, textiles, small appliances, textbooks, non-perishable food items ad much more during the spring move out cycle. These items are donated to community partners or utilized by the University of Thriftsburgh (on-campus thrift store) for Thriftsburgh’s annual “Welcome Back Sale” at the start of the Fall semester.

During Summer 2018, OPDC and SOOS recognized that there was a considerable amount of waste being generated in the Oakland neighborhoods that surround the University -- and joined forces to hold a small donation event (modeled on Clutter for a Cause) for neighborhood residents. Based on the success of that first event, Pitt and OPDC have partnered in each of the successive years (including 2020) to host multi-day collection events facilitated by SOOS and OPDC staff in partnership with local community organizations and other University offices (including Surplus Property and Community and Government Relations).

During the 2019 and 2020 off campus Clutter collections SOOS and OPDC diverted between 8-10 tons of material.

Learn more in OPDC’s 2018-19 Annual Report: https://static1.squarespace.com/static/58d3ec4d59cc687828b1b930/t/5de92f9a18cc940feecaf0cc/1575563179416/FINAL_OPDC+Report-2018-19_compressed.pdf

Pitt's Clutter for a Cause webpage: https://www.sustainable.pitt.edu/clutter-for-a-cause/


Name of the institution’s formal community partnership to advance sustainability (2nd partnership):
Environmental Justice Alternative Break (Center for Coalfield Justice + Pitt's Office of PittServes)

Does the institution provide financial or material support for the partnership? (2nd partnership):
Yes

Which of the following best describes the partnership timeframe? (2nd partnership):
Multi-year or ongoing

Which of the following best describes the partnership’s sustainability focus? (2nd partnership):
Sustainability-focused

Are underrepresented groups and/or vulnerable populations engaged as equal partners? (2nd partnership):
Yes

A brief description of the institution’s formal community partnership to advance sustainability (2nd partnership):
Name of the institution’s formal community partnership to advance sustainability (3rd partnership):
PPS Allegheny Technical Center Energy Education (Pitt's Mascaro Center for Sustainable Innovation (MCSI) and The Efficiency Network Inc. (TEN))

Does the institution provide financial or material support for the partnership? (3rd partnership):
Yes

Which of the following best describes the partnership timeframe? (3rd partnership):
Multi-year or ongoing

Which of the following best describes the partnership? (3rd partnership):
Sustainability-focused

Are underrepresented groups and/or vulnerable populations engaged as equal partners? (3rd partnership):
Yes

A brief description of the institution’s formal community partnership to advance sustainability (3rd partnership):

Pitt’s Mascaro Center for Sustainable Innovation (MCSI) has partnered with The Efficiency Network Inc. (TEN) to support the Pittsburgh Public School District in its ambitious plans to improve the education experience for students and improve the teaching environment for faculty, while improving Allegheny Traditional Academy’s energy use and operational costs, plus improving building infrastructure.

Initiated in late 2020, MCSI is developing a customized curriculum enhancement and behavior modification program for Allegheny Traditional Academy. This effort builds on MCSI’s prior “Green Week” experience partnering with a local middle school on Pittsburgh’s Northside. Thus, Pittsburgh Public Schools at Allegheny Traditional Academy will spend one week with the MCSI research group will learning about:
-Building physics with a focus on conduction, convection, and radiation
-Operating and understanding infrared cameras
-Hands on Design challenges for students from our Pitt’s Energy Labs, https://www.engineering.pitt.edu/MCSI/Energy-Labs/
-Leadership training, building on the curriculum developed for the National Energy Leadership Corps
-‘Energy detective’ training focused on energy audits
-Systems-level training and an emphasis on the triple bottom line accounting (people, planet, and profit) for teachers as we have done with our Teach the Teacher program
-Data visualization based on the School’s data, akin to this Pitt’s own Sustainability Dashboard, https://www.sustainable.pitt.edu/dashboard/

For more information: https://www.bilecbese.org/outreach


A brief description of the institution’s other community partnerships to advance sustainability:

COMMUNITY ENGAGEMENT CENTERS
The University of Pittsburgh has two Community Engagement Centers(CECs) in Pittsburgh’s Homewood and Hill District neighborhoods whose missions directly supports sustainability development goals. Pitt’s CECs work to support underrepresented community members by providing programs that build capacity, improve resident's quality of life, advance beneficial research, and enhance education through STEM opportunities. With the goal to build strong communities, Pitt has entered this long-term place-based partnership with a minimum 15-year commitments of investment, infrastructure, programming, and staffing to both neighborhoods.
Learn more about Pitt’s CECs: https://cec.pitt.edu/

HIGHER EDUCATION CLIMATE CONSORTIUM
Pittsburgh’s colleges and universities play a vital role in the city’s success, from developing the next generation of leaders to generating breakthrough discoveries. Similarly, Pittsburgh’s institutions of higher education have accepted responsibility for leading the way in reducing greenhouse gas emissions, banding together to form Pittsburgh’s Higher Education Climate Consortium (HECC) to cooperatively implement recommendations. HECC meets quarterly to collaboratively advance how colleges, universities and their students can reduce their greenhouse gas emissions, while striving for regional carbon neutrality. HECC And the City of Pittsburgh also regularly collaborate to accelerate regional climate and resilience efforts.

HECC is currently co-chaired by the University of Pittsburgh (Pitt’s Director of Sustainability, Dr. Aurora Sharrard), and Duquesne University. Other HECC members include Carlow University, Carnegie Mellon University, the Community College of Allegheny County, Penn State University’s Pittsburgh Center, and Robert Morris University.

Learn more about HECC: https://www.smithgroup.com/perspectives/2019/every-college-and-university-should-be-part-of-a-climate-collaborative

OTHER NOTABLE PITT SUSTAINABILITY COMMUNITY PARTNERSHIPS
The University also fosters the following community partnerships focused on sustainability:
1) Tree Pittsburgh – Member of Campus Tree Advisory Committee, https://www.sustainable.pitt.edu/campus-tree-advisory-committee/
2) Bike Pittsburgh – Convenes Pittsburgh’s University Bike & Pedestrian Committee, of which Pitt is an active member and collaborator
3) 412 Food Rescue – Partnered both on food recovery (Pitt student group Food Rescue Heroes and Pitt Eats by Compass) and drop-off (Pitt Pantry)
4) Congress of Neighboring Communities (CONNECT) – Is convened and facilitated by Pitt, bringing together the City of Pittsburgh and 44 surrounding municipalities to identify common public policy challenges and solutions for collective change on behalf of Allegheny County’s urban core. https://www.connect.pitt.edu


Website URL where information about the institution’s community partnerships to advance sustainability is available:
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Additional documentation to support the submission:
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