Overall Rating Silver
Overall Score 61.15
Liaison Ashley Woolman
Submission Date April 8, 2022

STARS v2.2

Western Colorado University
AC-10: Support for Sustainability Research

Status Score Responsible Party
Complete 3.00 / 4.00 Ashley Woolman
Sustainability Coordinator
Facilities Services
"---" indicates that no data was submitted for this field

Does the institution have an ongoing program to encourage students in multiple disciplines or academic programs to conduct sustainability research?:

A brief description of the student sustainability research program:

The Helman Environmental Athlete Award: Up to $10,000. Student athletes who are passionate about sustainability and the environment are considered for a Helman Environmental Athlete Award which honors past Western Colorado University President Jay Helman, who encouraged the creation of the Environment and Sustainability Major and the Master in Environmental Management program during his tenure at Western. The fellowship gives student athletes an opportunity to pursue their graduate degree while continuing their passion for athletics. Awardees will serve as either assistant coaches in Western’s athletics department or applicants with athletic eligibility from underserved backgrounds are also invited to apply as a student athlete. This year we particularly seek students who can coach in women’s soccer, swimming and diving, and track and field, though applicants are welcome from any sport.

The Masters in Environmental Management program offers a suite of graduate fellowships to reduce tuition, to enhance organizational partnerships, to elevate master’s project quality and to improve career competitiveness for select MEM students. Over 80% percent of our master’s students received some financial assistance through fellowships, internships, and grants during the past 5 years.

The Master of Science in Ecology program has many fellowships, grants, and scholarships available. These include biology teaching assistantships, High Country News digital internship, social media master fellowship, statistics peer tutors fellowship, and writing tutor fellowships.

The Thornton Biology Research Program gives undergraduate students the opportunity to work with faculty on funded, original research. In student-directed projects, students write research proposals on topics of their interest in collaboration with biology faculty members who have expertise in the topic. The student may request a Thornton Research Award of up to $3,000. In addition, they may request funds for equipment, supplies and related travel.

The Outdoor Industry MBA program offers many fellowship opportunities including: Colorado Outdoor Recreation Industry Office Diversity and Inclusion Fellowhip, Conservation Finance for Recreation Management, social media marketing, special events coordinator, sustainability coordinator, Write Challenge, and Regenerative Innovation in the Outdoor Industry.

In the LEAD Sustainability program, there are work-study positions available for students. They act as sustainability advocates on campus.

Does the institution have a program to encourage academic staff from multiple disciplines or academic programs to conduct sustainability research?:

A brief description of the faculty sustainability research program:

The Sustainable Action Committee launched a sustainability -focused professional development fund, which includes support for research, attending conference, etc.

The Thornton Biology Research Program gives undergraduate students the opportunity to work with faculty on funded, original research. The program also delivers teaching release time for faculty, allowing professors to focus on their own research and support students’ projects. In faculty-directed projects, professors typically write the research proposals, and students are eligible for a Thornton Research Assistantship. These projects are generally tied to the primary research program of the faculty member and provide students with an opportunity to learn about science and the specific topic of the study.

Has the institution published written policies and procedures that give positive recognition to interdisciplinary, transdisciplinary, and multidisciplinary research during faculty promotion and/or tenure decisions?:

A copy of the promotion or tenure guidelines or policies:

The promotion or tenure guidelines or policies:

Does the institution have ongoing library support for sustainability research and learning?:

A brief description of the institution’s library support for sustainability research:

The library has multiple online class guides for courses on sustainability (Intro to Environment and Sustainability, Writing the Environment, and Environmental Policy.

Website URL where information about the institution’s support for sustainability research is available:
Additional documentation to support the submission:

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