Institutional Change Progress Report and Change Committee Response to Sustainability: Campus Wide Sustainability Planning and Office Devoted to Implementation (Cabinet Recommendation 1.4.1b)

Cabinet Charge: To help achieve the University’s vision, 1.4.1b of the Cabinet report recommended, in part:

Many successful programs and initiatives already exist at HSU, but a systematic effort to coordinate such efforts, track progress and setbacks, and identify opportunities requires a coordinated effort by the campus community. At present, the campus employs a sustainability coordinator, has developed a website, recently formed a president’s advisory committee, and has an early and incomplete draft of a campus plan. These efforts must be prioritized and given the resources and leadership necessary for success (including “director” status for the office head). Done right, these efforts ought to produce substantial benefits for the University: integrating curriculum; ensuring that we ‘walk the talk’; elevating our national profile.

It is vital that this effort not be narrowly focused upon the campus physical plant. Important though such efforts are, planning for sustainability must also have a central focus on curricular support and integration, research, as well as student initiatives and activities. It is because such efforts transcend individual colleges and university divisions that they require planning and activity at the university-wide level.

Progress to date: The 10/11/10 progress report submitted by Sustainability Coordinator TC Comet, as well as the accompanying list of recommendations from the President’s Advisory Committee on Sustainability (PACS), indicate that plans are taking shape to substantively address the cabinet’s recommendation. Furthermore, the president’s 10/18/10 message to campus regarding the expenditure of ARRA (Stimulus) funds appears to provide some of the support needed to ensure that a sustainability office be established that can carry out these plans. We note that by far the most time-intensive portion of the PACS recommendations is the one focused upon curriculum and working with faculty.

Change Steering Committee Responses:

January 2011 Response:

Even in the present budget climate, necessary resources remain to be identified to ensure that these efforts can continue. Moreover, we believe it vital that the sustainability director and office be situated within the university’s organizational structure in a way that accentuates their campus-wide leadership on these issues.

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