|Submission Date||Oct. 12, 2018|
University of Washington, Seattle
EN-3: Student Life
|2.00 / 2.00||
Does the institution have one or more active student groups focused on sustainability?:
A brief description of active student groups focused on sustainability:
The University of Washington has more than two dozen active student groups that focus or relate to environment or sustainability topics. The primary sustainability-focused groups are:
• The Campus Sustainability Fund is helping to create a sustainable campus by fostering an environmentally conscious culture by funding student-led projects that lessen the University of Washington's environmental impact. The Campus Sustainability Fund has granted more than $2.5 million in project funding since it was established in 2010. This group is student-funded and student-run.
• EcoReps is a student-run organization that works with student peers, faculty and staff to make the University of Washington a more sustainable place by implementing green ideas. EcoReps connects student members with sustainability projects such as organizing regular Green Husky Markets showcasing local vendors, Green Dawgs Certifications for student groups, organizing Sustainability in the Arts (SITA), working with the Dental school to utilize sustainable materials, and more.
• UW Solar is an interdisciplinary team of students at the University of Washington that works to increase the number of solar energy installations on the UW campus, and provide effective outreach to students about the benefits of smart solar investments.
• The Society for Ecological Restoration - University of Washington Chapter brings together students with a common interest in the science and practice of ecological restoration. SER-UW has removed invasive plants and planted native plants in an area of campus, and has implemented a native plant nursery on the UW campus.
• The Student Association for Green Environments (S.A.G.E.) is a registered student organization that helps to build a student community within the Program on the Environment. Events and networking opportunities provided through S.A.G.E. strive to stimulate awareness and promote environmental stewardship.
• Students Expressing Environmental Dedication (SEED) is a student organization at the University of Washington, overseen by Housing and Food Services, that encourages environmentally sound practices in the residence halls and serves to raise awareness about environmental issues that affect the residential community.
• The UW Farm is a campus center for the practice and study of urban agriculture and sustainability. It is an educational, community-oriented resource for people who want to learn about building productive and sustainable urban landscapes.
•UW SAN (Sustainability Action Network) is "A collaborative campus network that engages and empowers diverse perspectives in pursuit of sustainability in our environment, society, government, and economy." This group was founded in 2017, and had a formative role in planning the 2018 Earth Day celebration that focused on bringing diversity as well as equity into sustainability conversations. Currently, they are focused on creating contexts and situations for constructive dialogue between student groups concerned with the environment, social equity, and the economy.
The website URL where information about the student groups is available (optional):
Does the institution have gardens, farms, community supported agriculture (CSA) or fishery programs, and/or urban agriculture projects 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 UW Farm is a campus center for the practice and study of urban agriculture and sustainability. It is an educational, community-oriented resource for people who want to learn about building productive and sustainable urban landscapes. The Farm has multiple diverse urban spaces around the UW campus. Student volunteers maintain the farm, and provide outreach and tours that are incorporated into the curriculum of classes ranging from ecology to anthropology. UW Housing and Food Services has agreed to purchase food from the UW Farm for use in campus dining facilities. The UW Farm practices sustainable agriculture as much as possible; they don’t use any pesticides or herbicides, but rather use sustainable practices such as polycultures, crop rotations, organic compost, and cover crops. The UW Farm offers a CSA program for the UW community during the summer.
UW Tacoma's Giving Garden meets the needs of UW Tacoma and the surrounding community by providing fresh food to low-income families and marginalized groups, strengthening community bonds, engaging student learning, and providing an escape from stress. The Giving Garden serves as an example of affordable urban gardening, an educational research plot for determining best practices, and also serves as a community resource for fresh produce.
UW Bothell broke ground on campus garden beds in 2016. The garden holds beds, a vermicompost bin, and yard waste hot compost from campus grounds operations.
The website URL where information about the gardens, farms or agriculture projects is available (optional):
Does the institution have student-run enterprises that include sustainability as part of their mission statements or stated purposes (e.g. cafés through which students gain sustainable business skills)?:
A brief description of the student-run enterprises:
There are several opportunities for students to gain sustainable business skills through real-world experience at the University of Washington:
1. Associated Students of the University of Washington (ASUW) Bike Shop (student-run):
"As kids, bikes represented freedom to explore. As adults, they provide a cost effective, fun, environmentally friendly, and healthy way to travel. Bikes provide the thrill of exploration. The goal of the ASUW Bike Shop is to provide the most affordable and the fastest bicycle repair service in the area, allowing our customers to spend less money and less time waiting for bicycle repairs. We believe that more people riding bikes on campus will lead to a healthier community. Unlike other bike shops, our goal is not to turn a profit, but rather to provide a service to the community. We love to ride bikes, and we want you to as well!"
2. The Student Food Cooperative Bean Basket sells bulk non-perishable, sustainable sourced foods to students, providing an on-campus option for low-cost sustainable food options.
3. The annual UW Environmental Innovation Challenge brings together Interdisciplinary student teams to define a clean-tech problem, design and develop the solution, and produce both a prototype and a business summary that demonstrates the market opportunity. These projects encourage students to launch products and businesses that are related to environmental sustainability.
The website URL where information about the student-run enterprises is available (optional):
Does the institution have sustainable investment funds, green revolving funds or sustainable microfinance initiatives 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:
The Campus Sustainability Fund (CSF) is a student-managed, student-funded green fee that allocates approximately $350,000 annually to student designed sustainability projects at the University of Washington Seattle. The fund places students in leadership positions where they gain hands-on skills in project management, grant writing, and project implementation, while simultaneously allowing students the opportunity to integrate their research and academic studies into real life applications.
The website URL where information about the sustainable investment funds, green revolving funds or sustainable microfinance initiatives is available (optional):
Does the institution have conferences, speaker series, symposia or similar events related to sustainability that have students as the intended audience?:
A brief description of the conferences, speaker series, symposia or similar events related to sustainability:
The University of Washington holds several major events related to sustainability:
• The Sustainability Fair celebrates sustainability efforts at the University of Washington during National Campus Sustainability Month, highlighting contributions and leadership efforts across campus as well as providing opportunities for students, faculty and staff to get involved. http://green.uw.edu/fair
• The UW Earth Day Celebration brings students, faculty, staff, and community members together to celebrate environmental stewardship and sustainability efforts across campus and within the community. Groups can share information about their mission, educate others about their area of environmental focus, and encourage others to get involved. Many of the Earth Day activities are planned, run and governed by the student Earth Club. http://green.uw.edu/earth-day
•The Bevan Series on sustainable fisheries is a popular annual event held one quarter each year, usually in the format of weekly seminars for 10 weeks, and on occasion as a two-day symposium. The series features internationally recognized experts seeking to examine current issues affecting fisheries and marine conservation, representing as many viewpoints as possible, focusing on solutions to pressing problems. All lectures are free and open to the public.
• The UW Nutritional Sciences weekly seminar series, held in Autumn and Winter quarters, examines emerging issues in food and nutrition as they relate to personal and public health. The seminar is open to all UW faculty, staff, and students and often directly relates to sustainability.
•The UW College of the Environment and the School of Environmental and Forest Sciences host an annual Sustaining Our World lecture, bringing in a speaker each year. http://depts.washington.edu/sefsblog/tag/sustaining-our-world-lecture-series/
• The Environmental Health Seminar (Env H 580) is a department-sponsored seminar series for students, staff, and faculty; practicing professionals in the environmental and occupational health fields; and the public. This seminar highlights the rich diversity of our department and is an opportunity to hear from local, national, and internationally known scientists, practitioners, and policymakers on issues of current scientific importance. http://deohs.washington.edu/calendar/environmental-health-seminar
• A collection of sustainability events are centralized on UW Sustainability's events calendar http://green.uw.edu/events
The website URL where information about the conferences, speaker series, symposia or similar events related to sustainability is available (optional):
Does the institution have cultural arts events, installations or performances related to sustainability that have students as the intended audience?:
A brief description of the cultural arts events, installations or performances related to sustainability:
Examples of cultural art events at the University of Washington related to sustainability have included:
Ballo Conservato was a photographic installation featuring images of dancers to create powerful visual moments of human interaction with renewable and finite resources––such as paper, water, oil and earth. This installation was student-created and was exhibited in the on-campus Meany Center for the Performing Arts.
The student group SAGE hosted "Art to Inspire," featuring presentations by National Geographic photographers.
A UW Biology lab worked with an "artist in residence" to better engage with the community.
UW Sustainability has included a "Cultural Sustainability" stage during the SustainableUW Festival, featuring performances from student cultural groups.
The UW Earth Day activities have included art installations and community art projects, where attendees could be a part of a larger art piece on what sustainability means to them.
The website URL where information about the cultural arts events, installations or performances is available (optional):
Does the institution have wilderness or outdoors programs (e.g. that organize hiking, backpacking, kayaking, or other outings for students) that follow Leave No Trace principles?:
A brief description of the wilderness or outdoors programs that follow Leave No Trace principles:
UWild Adventures offers a variety of activities for students to satisfy the thirst for adventure. From single day rock climbing trips, to multi-day bike tours, UWild helps students experience all that the Pacific Northwest has to offer.
The website URL where information about the wilderness or outdoors programs is available (optional):
Does the institution have sustainability-related themes chosen for themed semesters, years, or first-year experiences (e.g. choosing a sustainability-related book for common reading)?:
A brief description of the sustainability-related themes chosen for themed semesters, years, or first-year experiences:
The website URL where information about the sustainability-related themes is available (optional):
Does the institution have programs through which students can learn sustainable life skills?:
A brief description of the programs through which students can learn sustainable life skills:
The website URL where information about the sustainable life skills programs is available (optional):
Does the institution offer sustainability-focused student employment opportunities?:
A brief description of the sustainability-focused student employment opportunities offered by the institution:
The University of Washington has several sustainability-focused student employment opportunities.
- Through the Campus Sustainability Fund, two students are employed to administer and communicate the fund.
- Within the UW Sustainability office, many students are employed each quarter to focus on various sustainability issues.
- In the Residence Halls, an employment opportunity is provided to lead SEED to ensure success of the program. Additionally, many Resident Advisers include sustainability as a focus of their programming.
The website URL where information about the student employment opportunities is available:
Does the institution have graduation pledges through which students pledge to consider social and environmental responsibility in future job and other decisions?:
A brief description of the graduation pledges:
The website URL where information about the graduation pledges is available (optional):
Does the institution have other co-curricular sustainability programs and initiatives?:
A brief description of the other co-curricular sustainability programs and initiatives:
There are many other sustainability programs at UW. For example:
UW EarthGames is a growing community of researchers, game developers and students who share a passion for games and the environment. We’re hard at work adapting the latest scientific research to develop amazing video and board games to teach and inspire players about the natural world and our role within it.
The UW Athletics Green Teams works with students and other volunteers to encourage Zero Waste practices at all home football games. Volunteers are stationed throughout the stadium and in the tailgating parking lots before and during the game to help fans properly recycle and compost.
The website URL where information about other co-curricular sustainability programs and initiatives is available (optional):
Estimated percentage of students (full-time and part-time) that participate annually in sustainability-focused co-curricular education and outreach programs (0-100):
Additional documentation to support the submission:
In January 2018, the UW Daily published its first ever magazine titled "(UW)ellness)" in order to highlight the importance of wellness on our campus for students, faculty, and staff. The Daily intends to publish new issues of "(UW)ellness" each year.
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.
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.