Overall Rating Gold
Overall Score 73.17
Liaison Emily Vollmer
Submission Date May 16, 2024

STARS v2.2

Virginia Tech
EN-2: Student Orientation

Status Score Responsible Party
Complete 2.00 / 2.00 Emily Vollmer
Sustainability Coordinator
Office of Sustainability
"---" indicates that no data was submitted for this field

Are the following students provided an opportunity to participate in orientation activities and programming that prominently include sustainability?:
Yes or No
First-year students Yes
Transfer students Yes
Entering graduate students Yes

Percentage of all entering students that are provided an opportunity to participate in orientation activities and programming that prominently include sustainability:

A brief description of how sustainability is included prominently in new student orientation :
Beginning in 2009, sustainability has been prominently featured in New Student Orientation. The Office of Sustainability and the student group Environmental Coalition joined together to participate in the 2009 New Student Orientation Hokie Resource Fair, which introduced incoming freshman, transfer students, and their parents to Virginia Tech’s many student organizations, including all sustainability initiatives.

In 2010 New Student Orientation was restructured to streamline the information provided to incoming students. Campus organizations and departments were invited to participate in Gobblerfest on the first Friday of the fall semester, instead of the Hokie Resource Fair. Gobblerfest is a welcome festival for students, staff, faculty, and community members to learn more about Virginia Tech and the Town of Blacksburg community, find ways to get involved with student organizations, volunteer opportunities, campus events, and what local businesses have to offer.

The Office of Sustainability has had a booth at Gobblerfest, the fair that aims to expose Freshmen to the many opportunities Tech has to offer, to promote Virginia Tech’s ongoing sustainability initiatives and sustainability-related student organizations on campus every year since 2010.

To ensure that sustainability was still prominently featured in the 2010 New Student Orientation events, the Office of Sustainability partnered with the Student Government Association (SGA) to train the 2010 New Student Orientation Leaders about the importance of sustainability at Virginia Tech, the ongoing sustainability initiatives, and ways that new students could get involved. Additionally, the 2010 SGA president, Bo Hart, included remarks about sustainability in his speech during New Student Orientation.

The Office of Sustainability continues to train the new student orientation leaders every summer. In summer 2019, the Office of Sustainability was contacted by Linzy Martinelli, the Assistant Director for Student Leadership, Training, and Developing with New Student and Family Programs, inviting us to give a presentation to the students leaders for both new student orientation and transfer student orientation. The idea being that the Office of Sustainability presents information to student leaders, who in turn use this knowledge to brief the students that they lead during orientation programs. Dennis Cochrane and Blake Bensman gave a presentation to student leaders on June 27, 2019 and the presentation slides are shown in the attachment below.

In response to COVID-19, Virginia Tech has moved its orientation program online to include pre-orientation modules, live virtual sessions, and post-orientation modules along with office hours hosted by orientation team members prior to each session.

In 2022, Virginia Tech implemented its Week of Welcome program, a series of educational presentations on different Virginia Tech opportunities held during the first week of the academic year following move-in. All incoming students are encouraged to attend to find out more about Virginia Tech. The Office of Sustainability holds a joint presentation with the sustainability manager from Dining and Housing and with Sustainable Transportation to collectively educate students on the many ways to practice sustainability on campus.

Website URL where information about sustainability in student orientation is available:
Additional documentation to support the submission:
Data source(s) and notes about the submission:

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