Overall Rating Reporter
Overall Score
Liaison Phil Valko
Submission Date March 6, 2020
Executive Letter Download

STARS v2.1

Washington University in St. Louis
EN-1: Student Educators Program

Status Score Responsible Party
Complete Reporter Cassandra Hage
Sustainability Manager
Office of Sustainability
"---" indicates that no data was submitted for this field

Number of students enrolled for credit (headcount):
16,703

Total number of students enrolled for credit that are served (i.e. directly targeted) by a student peer-to-peer sustainability outreach and education program (avoid double-counting to the extent feasible):
16,703

Percentage of students served by a peer-to-peer educator program:
100

Name of the student educators program:
Eco Reps

Number of students served (i.e. directly targeted) by the program (headcount):
6,941

A brief description of the program, including examples of peer-to-peer outreach activities:

The South 40 is the primary undergraduate residential campus and is made up of 24 residential halls divided into 10 residential colleges. The Eco Reps program places sustainability representatives in each residential college with the task of disseminating information related to sustainability to their peers, including education, programs, and opportunities to get involved. Eco Reps also plan events that advocate for sustainable living. Each February, for example, Eco Reps plan a sustainability-themed kick-off event in celebration of Green Cup, which is an energy reduction competition. This year, one of the Eco Reps for the Park/Mudd residential college planned a reusable mug event. Residents received a special treat if they brought a reusable mug. Those without a mug had the opportunity to get one at the event. They have also done LED bulb swaps and presented waste sorting training.


A brief description of how the student educators are selected:

Eco Reps are elected every fall semester by members of their respective residential colleges.


A brief description of the formal training that the student educators receive to prepare them to conduct peer outreach:

Eco Reps attend a fall retreat, meet monthly with the Congress of the South 40's Sustainability Chair, and receive an overview by the Office of Sustainability on university-wide initiatives and progress.


A brief description of the financial and/or administrative support the institution provides to the program (e.g. annual budget and/or faculty/staff coordination):

A Residential Life staff member advises the Congress of the South 40, which is a student government for the residential campus and which houses the Eco Reps. The Eco Rep program has a $2000 budget.


Name of the student educators program (2nd program):
Green Ambassadors

Number of students served (i.e. directly targeted) by the program (2nd program):
7,604

A brief description of the program, including examples of peer-to-peer outreach activities (2nd program):

Green Ambassadors are a group of approximately 30 students who return to campus early to help with new student orientation and other events during the first 40 days of the fall semester. Outreach activities include helping students sort their waste at large events and at dining locations. In addition to volunteering during move-in day and at one or more large events, responsibilities include distributing educational materials to assigned residential college halls, leading voluntary Metro trips to Target and area grocery stores, and helping create and execute a team project. Green Ambassadors are assigned to one of four teams: Compost and Recycling, Food and Dining, Water Conservation, or Energy Reduction and Efficiency.


A brief description of how the student educators are selected (2nd program):

Students complete an application that asks them about their interest in sustainability, ideas for how to incorporate sustainability into orientation, and what living sustainably means to them. Students select their top team choices and must be available for a 2-day retreat and training.


A brief description of the formal training that the student educators receive to prepare them to conduct peer outreach (2nd program):

Green Ambassadors participate in at least one group meeting before arriving on campus to hear brief overviews of the program, schedules, and expectations and responsibilities. In late August, students return to campus and attend an overnight retreat and training. The training lasts approximately 6 hours. Students learn about sustainability initiatives on campus, participate in team building activities, and learn about the details of their roles and responsibilities.


A brief description of the financial and/or administrative support the institution provides to the program (e.g. annual budget and/or faculty/staff coordination) (2nd program):

The Office of Sustainability pays for early move-in for students who live in university and provides funding for food and logistical expenses during the retreat/training and on move-in day.


Name of the student educators program (3rd program):
Office of Sustainability Student Internship

Number of students served (i.e. directly targeted) by the program (3rd program):
15,155

A brief description of the program, including examples of peer-to-peer outreach activities (3rd program):

The Office of Sustainability started a student internship program in 2012. The Office employs a team of 4-6 students who work full-time (37.5 hours per week) during the summer and a group of approximately 17 students who work part-time (5-10 hours per week) during the school year. Student associates collaborate with each other and campus and community partners to extend the presence and capacity of the Office of Sustainability.

Student associates help with a variety of education and outreach efforts across all campuses, including:
-Planning, marketing, and attending campus-wide events such as Earth Week, Active Transportation Month, Food Week, and more. These events are advertised to the entire student population and are open to all.
-Public relations, including communications that go out to all students, faculty, and staff. For example, student associates put together and designed content for a new campus bicycle map, a Less is More toolkit with reminders on energy efficiency measures, and the Office's bi-weekly e-newsletter.
-Waste management and reduction: a team of students help interface between campus dining vendors, waste collection companies, the facilities department and the Office of Sustainability.
-Plan and coordinate environmental justice projects on campus and in St. Louis.
-Explore opportunities for the university to increase its involvement and ownership of renewable energy and energy efficiency projects both on and off campus.
-Certify offices on all campuses in the Green Office Program.
-Participate in monthly professional development workshops.


A brief description of how the student educators are selected (3rd program):

Students can apply for any open position by submitting a cover letter and resume through the Office of Sustainability's website. At the end of each semester, Office staff review candidate materials and conduct in-person interviews with top candidates. Those selected are notified shortly after the interview process.


A brief description of the formal training that the student educators receive to prepare them to conduct peer outreach (3rd program):

At the start of each semester, student associates attend an orientation and learn about the Office's projects, initiatives, and goals. Office of Sustainability staff host the orientation. More targeted outreach and education programs may include additional training.

Students also participate in monthly professional development trainings.


A brief description of the financial and/or administrative support the institution provides to the program (e.g. annual budget and/or faculty/staff coordination) (3rd program):

Undergraduate student pay starts at $10 per hour and they are eligible for a $1/hour raise after working with the Office for a year. Graduate students are paid $12 per hour.

The office also recently hired an Internship and Business Coordinator; 50% of her job responsibilities are to support and grow the intern program. All 5 sustainability staff oversee at least 1 team of interns, meeting with them once weekly.


A brief description of all other student peer-to-peer sustainability outreach and education programs, including the number of students served and how student educators are selected, trained, and supported by the institution:

Skillshare Collective is a student led group that plans and hosts an annual event to bring together students, faculty, staff, and St. Louis community members through dozens of hour long workshops called skillshares. Many of these workshops teach participants to live more sustainably, including: Bike Maintenance, Terrarium Making, Wilderness Hard Skills, Herb Gardening and Compost, T-shirt Upcycling, Upcycling wood, Grow Your Own Salad, Yogurt Making, and Pickling. For more information: https://www.facebook.com/WUskillshare/timeline


Total number of hours student educators are engaged in peer-to-peer sustainability outreach and education activities annually (all programs):
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The website URL where information about the programs or initiatives is available:
Additional documentation to support the submission:
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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.