Overall Rating Silver
Overall Score 46.13
Liaison Traci Knabenshue
Submission Date March 3, 2021

STARS v2.2

West Virginia University
AC-8: Campus as a Living Laboratory

Status Score Responsible Party
Complete 4.00 / 4.00 Stephanie Toothman
Conservation Specialist
Auxiliary and Business Services
"---" indicates that no data was submitted for this field

Is the institution utilizing its infrastructure and operations as a living laboratory for applied student learning for sustainability in relation to Campus Engagement?:
Yes

A brief description of the projects and how they contribute to understanding or advancing sustainability in relation to Campus Engagement:

A group of landscape architect students created a greenspace plan for an under utilized piece of property, now known as the Falling Run Greenspace. After administration approval, one student took a lead role into collaborating with various departments on campus and recruited student volunteers to build trails on the land. With their help, approximately 2.6 miles of trails, with an average slope of 7.5% have been constructed. When completed, Falling Run will have 13 trails and 8 access points totaling nearly 5 miles.


Is the institution utilizing its infrastructure and operations as a living laboratory for applied student learning for sustainability in relation to Public Engagement?:
Yes

A brief description of the projects and how they contribute to understanding or advancing sustainability in relation to Public Engagement:

Students created a 7-episode podcast series titled "WVU Climate Conservations" that is now publicly available on all platforms.

The WVU Planetarium purchased the "Dynamic Earth" full-dome film and students developed a "Climate Change from a Planetary Perspective" presentation to go with it. Students learned that planetary science has a rich history of informing our understanding of Earth, and the visitors to the planetarium enjoy learning about climate change.


Is the institution utilizing its infrastructure and operations as a living laboratory for applied student learning for sustainability in relation to Air & Climate?:
Yes

A brief description of the projects and how they contribute to understanding or advancing sustainability in relation to Air & Climate:

Students and employees of WVU’s Center for Inhalation Toxicology identify and discover how the particles we breathe affect our health. Inhalable particles from things like e-cigarettes, auto emissions, and aerosol released during 3-D printing are just a few examples of what has been tested at the center. Most recently, due to COVID-19, the center has tested alternative mask materials, mask design, air sampling, and exposure assessment.


Is the institution utilizing its infrastructure and operations as a living laboratory for applied student learning for sustainability in relation to Buildings?:
No

A brief description of the projects and how they contribute to understanding or advancing sustainability in relation to Buildings:
---

Is the institution utilizing its infrastructure and operations as a living laboratory for applied student learning for sustainability in relation to Energy?:
No

A brief description of the projects and how they contribute to understanding or advancing sustainability in relation to Energy:
---

Is the institution utilizing its infrastructure and operations as a living laboratory for applied student learning for sustainability in relation to Food & Dining?:
Yes

A brief description of the projects and how they contribute to understanding or advancing sustainability in relation to Food & Dining:

Master of Public Administration students completed an analysis of survey results on WVU student use, barriers, and access to farmers markets near or on campus.

Students from the Sustainability Environment Economy Energy Design (SEEED) Living-Learning Community are individuals that live close together inside a residence hall that share an interest in sustainability. Throughout the academic year this group of students learn about key sustainability topics and apply what they have learned. They grow food on a WVU farm or in a garden, make prototypes in the maker space/launch lab, serve to make the campus, community and the world a better place, and explore the outdoors with Adventure WV.


Is the institution utilizing its infrastructure and operations as a living laboratory for applied student learning for sustainability in relation to Grounds?:
Yes

A brief description of the projects and how they contribute to understanding or advancing sustainability in relation to Grounds:

Students majoring in landscape architecture collaborated with the West Virginia Nursery and Landscape Association in developing a green space proposal plan for the Evansdale Campus. Upon completion, the plan was reviewed by WVU’s Davis College of agriculture, natural resources and design, WVU’s Office of the provost and division of facilities and services. Some design elements from the plan will be considered for future implementation on WVU’s campus.


Is the institution utilizing its infrastructure and operations as a living laboratory for applied student learning for sustainability in relation to Purchasing?:
No

A brief description of the projects and how they contribute to understanding or advancing sustainability in relation to Purchasing:
---

IIs the institution utilizing its infrastructure and operations as a living laboratory for applied student learning for sustainability in relation to Transportation?:
Yes

A brief description of the projects and how they contribute to understanding or advancing sustainability in relation to Transportation:

Students majoring in public health fields assisted office of sustainability by designing, administering, and analyzing a survey about the awareness of bicycling infrastructure on campus and student perceptions on barriers and motivations for biking on campus.

Master of Public Administration students collaborated with the Mon River Trail Association by contributing to their strategic plan. Students examined the use, access, and barriers to the walking and biking trail by WVU students, faculty, and staff.


Is the institution utilizing its infrastructure and operations as a living laboratory for applied student learning for sustainability in relation to Waste?:
Yes

A brief description of the projects and how they contribute to understanding or advancing sustainability in relation to Waste:

A group of students conducted a campus-wide water fountain and water bottle filling station inventory; and provided recommendations to the Office of Sustainability for additional filling stations to reduce plastic bottle consumption.

A group of students conducted a campus-wide exterior waste receptacle inventory and provided recommendations for the Office of Sustainability for additional outdoor bin needs to improve recycling participation.


Is the institution utilizing its infrastructure and operations as a living laboratory for applied student learning for sustainability in relation to Water?:
Yes

A brief description of the projects and how they contribute to understanding or advancing sustainability in relation to Water:

A group of students and employees have collaborated to collect and test wastewater to detect RNA from SARS-CoV-2, the virus that causes COVID-19. Testing the water used on campus, especially from residence halls, helps to appropriately manage the spread of COVID-19.


Is the institution utilizing its infrastructure and operations as a living laboratory for applied student learning for sustainability in relation to Coordination & Planning?:
No

A brief description of the projects and how they contribute to understanding or advancing sustainability in relation to Coordination & Planning:
---

Is the institution utilizing its infrastructure and operations as a living laboratory for applied student learning for sustainability in relation to Diversity & Affordability?:
Yes

A brief description of the projects and how they contribute to understanding or advancing sustainability in relation to Diversity & Affordability:

A post-doc student determined what practices limited inclusion of minority students in the field of mathematics. As a result of their findings the WVU math department applied and received a grant that specifically assists universities and colleges in diversifying the nation’s science, technology, engineering and mathematics (STEM) workforce.


Is the institution utilizing its infrastructure and operations as a living laboratory for applied student learning for sustainability in relation to Investment & Finance?:
No

A brief description of the projects and how they contribute to understanding or advancing sustainability in relation to Investment & Finance:
---

Is the institution utilizing its infrastructure and operations as a living laboratory for applied student learning for sustainability in relation to Wellbeing & Work?:
Yes

A brief description of the projects and how they contribute to understanding or advancing sustainability in relation to Wellbeing & Work:

A group of students administered a survey to assess student mental health needs. Based on this information they worked with the School of Nursing faculty and staff to develop resources and implement strategies to address the identified needs.


Website URL where information about the institution’s living laboratory program is available:
---

Additional documentation to support the submission:
---

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.