Overall Rating Silver - expired
Overall Score 51.83
Liaison Leslie North
Submission Date Jan. 9, 2015
Executive Letter Download

STARS v2.0

Western Kentucky University
EN-9: Community Partnerships

Status Score Responsible Party
Complete 3.00 / 3.00 Christian Ryan
Sustainability Coordinator
WKU
"---" indicates that no data was submitted for this field

Does the institution have at least one formal sustainability partnership with the local community that meets the criteria as “supportive”?:
Yes

A brief description of the institution’s supportive sustainability partnership(s) with the local community:

WKU supports the local community through sustainability partnerships by acting as a resource for sustainability information, ideas and best practices. The WKU Office of Sustainability demonstration home provides practical space through which local business owners can showcase technologies and applications such as windows, insulation, solar energy, and other such best practices. Canning, gardening and food processing workshops are conducted regularly and open to the public.
Additionally, the Sustainability Coordinator provides community talks and appears regularly on television and radio to educate regarding sustainability concepts, ideas, and lifestyle tips.


Does the institution have at least one formal sustainability partnership with the local community that meets the criteria as “collaborative”?:
Yes

A brief description of the institution's collaborative sustainability partnership(s):

WKU collaborates with a variety of local food system stakeholders as a member of the Barren River Food System Alliance. This group seeks to advance the local food system through change in policy and practice. Awareness activities include collaborative Food Day programs and other such activities throughout the year.


Does the institution have at least one formal sustainability partnership with the local community that meets the criteria as “transformative”?:
Yes

A brief description of the institution's transformative sustainability partnership(s) with the local community:

WKU partners with the Community Farmers Market to support the local food system and to improve access and affordability for underserved populations. This partnership began in 2012 with a collaborative USDA grant, which was written in partnership between the two organizations. The grant provided funding for a local food directory, mini grants for farmer logo development, and a mobile market to bring fresh, local foods to underserved populations identifying through a student research project. The University has also given the market a space to operate, allowing for free year round operation. This support has resulted in greater sales for local farmers, allowing them to transition from part-time to full time farming. Additionally, local food sales to underserved populations have increased, as evidenced by SNAP and EBT sales. The Community Farmers Market also accepts "Big Red Dollars", student credit that can be used for food and other items around the community, encouraging students to purchase fresh, local food. Finally, the Community Farmers Market has begun to serve as a hub for distributing local food to institutional buyers, and particularly WKU. This partnership began several years ago but continues to grow and transform our campus and great community.


A brief description of the institution’s sustainability partnerships with distant (i.e. non-local) communities:

WKU has just entered into a partnership for climate change research with the University of Akueryi in Iceland. This is the result of a study abroad voyage that explored climate change in the North Atlantic and included a visit to the University. The intent is to provide students and faculty from both organizations to exchange culture, knowledge, and ideas and to cultivate collaborative research for climate change.


The website URL where information about sustainability partnerships is available:

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.