Tuesday, June 12, 2012

Wake Forest Makes Progress With Sustainability

Student passes out recycling information
Photo courtesy of Wake Forest University
Wake Forest University recently received a Silver rating from the Sustainability, Tracking, Assessment and Rating System, or STARS. 

The honor recognizes the university's sustainability efforts, ranging from reducing campus waste to sponsoring activities for 10 Days of Celebrating the Earth.Wake Forest also hosts numerous panels that focus on sustainability, including a recent discussion on Apple's fuel cell project in North Carolina.

STARS is a self-reporting assessment program developed by the Association for the Advancement of Sustainability in Higher Education (AASHE) that gives ratings of Bronze, Silver, Gold and Platinum. On this year’s scorecard, Wake Forest excelled in administrative coordination and collaboration between students, faculty and the greater Winston-Salem community.

Dedee DeLongpr√© Johnston, Wake Forest's director of sustainability, said in a press release that sustainability is about maintaining the community's long-term well-being. “The Office of Sustainability is like the hub of a bicycle wheel," she said. "The people on and off-campus working to create a sustainable environment are the spokes, and we’re here to empower them to lead the change."

Wake Forest was among the first universities to join STARS in 2010. Today, nearly 230 institutions throughout the U.S. and Canada use the system to report achievements and receive points in three main categories: education and research, operations, and planning, administration and engagement.

STARS helps universities measure improvement in sustainability efforts and learn from similar institutions. In the upcoming year, Wake Forest will build on this year’s success by investing more time in education and research, with a new curriculum workshop for faculty, and upcoming projects related to energy and climate change.

To read more on sustainability effort at Wake Forest, click here.

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