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  • AASHE-STARS

The Sustainability Tracking, Assessment & Rating System™ (STARS) is a transparent, self-reporting framework for colleges and universities to measure their sustainability performance.

Overall Rating Silver
Overall Score 48.07
Liaison Kathy Johnson
Submission Date April 21, 2017
Executive Letter Download

STARS v2.1

Black Hills State University
EN-3: Student Life

Status Score Responsible Party
Complete 2.00 / 2.00 Katie Greer
Sustainability Coordinator
Facilities Services
"---" indicates that no data was submitted for this field

Does the institution have one or more active student groups focused on sustainability?:
Yes

A brief description of active student groups focused on sustainability:

Environmental Sustainability Student Organization (ESSO) - Purpose of ESSO is to protect and conserve our environment while creating awareness to generate involvement surrounding environmental issues on campus and within the community and to gain experience in leadership and volunteering through community engagement, education, outreach, and expansion of our social networks.
Scientia - A student-run organization dedicated to all areas of science. Acting as a support network for students and faculty alike, Scientia holds regularly scheduled meetings to plan future events that help inform the public about opportunities in science related fields.
Enactus - Teaches the free enterprise system to others on campus and throughout the Black Hills. They create opportunities to learn how to use the free enterprise system. Nationally, Enactus has adopted sustainability as a value, something that our local chapter has adopted as well.
COLP – The collegiate outdoor leadership program is focused on providing opportunities for sustainable outdoor recreation. Examples include outdoor activity workshops with a focus on Leave No Trace Principals, as well as service activities such as Adopt a Trail.
AISES - American Indian Science and Engineering Society - a national non-profit organization which nurtures building of community by bridging science and technology with traditional native values. The ultimate goal of AISES is to be a catalyst for the advancement of American Indians and Native Alaskans as they seek to become self-reliant members of society. This program provides many students with valuable scholarships for college.


The website URL where information about the student groups is available (optional):
Does the institution have gardens, farms, community supported agriculture (CSA) or fishery programs, and/or urban agriculture projects where students are able to gain experience in organic agriculture and sustainable food systems?:
Yes

A brief description of the gardens, farms, community supported agriculture (CSA) or fishery programs, and/or urban agriculture projects:

The BHSU campus garden, located south of the Yellow Jacket Apartments, was established in 2008 by students living in the residence halls. Since then, the garden has grown through the volunteer efforts of faculty and staff, student organizations, and community groups. We've estimated that the garden requires 550+ hours of planting, watering, weeding, harvesting, and ground preparation each year. Volunteers can take home produce.


The website URL where information about the gardens, farms or agriculture projects is available (optional):
Does the institution have student-run enterprises that include sustainability as part of their mission statements or stated purposes (e.g. cafés through which students gain sustainable business skills)?:
Yes

A brief description of the student-run enterprises:

Enactus runs the Lisa Bike program on campus. This program allows students to lease a bike for a semester or year in order to reduce their dependence on automobiles to get around town. Lisa Bike program is a project the Enactus team took over from recent BHSU graduates Markus Heinrich and Nolan Schneider. The Lisa Bike Program is an environmentally sustainable and lower cost way to get around campus and town. As a part of the program, Enactus installed a bike fix-it station that can be utilized by the entire campus for free to further encourage biking to campus. Enactus is an international nonprofit organization comprised of a community of student, academic and business leaders who use the power of entrepreneurial action to transform lives and shape a better more sustainable world.


The website URL where information about the student-run enterprises is available (optional):
Does the institution have sustainable investment funds, green revolving funds or sustainable microfinance initiatives through which students can develop socially, environmentally and fiscally responsible investment and financial skills?:
Yes

A brief description of the sustainable investment funds, green revolving funds or sustainable microfinance initiatives:

Enactus invests in bee hives in Zambia to help stabilize the Zambian economy. The program is called Bee Sweet. They currently have 100 hives that are being maintained by Zambian women. Profits are shared between Enactus and the program participants. Enactus is an international nonprofit organization comprised of a community of student, academic and business leaders who use the power of entrepreneurial action to transform lives and shape a better more sustainable world.


The website URL where information about the sustainable investment funds, green revolving funds or sustainable microfinance initiatives is available (optional):
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Does the institution have conferences, speaker series, symposia or similar events related to sustainability that have students as the intended audience?:
Yes

A brief description of the conferences, speaker series, symposia or similar events related to sustainability:

Sustainability Day each October includes a speaker agenda to inform the campus and to advance communication about local sustainability initiatives.
Over the summer months, workshops are held at the campus community garden.
The Madeline Young Speakers’ series has identified sustainability as a key direction when selecting speakers. The speaker series is student-governed.
A sustainability movie series is held each winter to further educate students and community members regarding issues of sustainability.
In April several sustainability events are held to honor Earth and Arbor Day on campus often including speakers, panels, etc.


The website URL where information about the conferences, speaker series, symposia or similar events related to sustainability is available (optional):
Does the institution have cultural arts events, installations or performances related to sustainability that have students as the intended audience?:
Yes

A brief description of the cultural arts events, installations or performances related to sustainability:

BHSU art students use recycled materials to create art. Art students made 3D dog sculptures out of used campus cardboard in collaboration for a fundraising event at the Western Hills Humane Society. The BHSU Art Club decorated the Student Union over the holiday season with wreaths made of plastic bottles and bags. After display, all items were again recycled.


The website URL where information about the cultural arts events, installations or performances is available (optional):
Does the institution have wilderness or outdoors programs (e.g. that organize hiking, backpacking, kayaking, or other outings for students) that follow Leave No Trace principles?:
Yes

A brief description of the wilderness or outdoors programs that follow Leave No Trace principles:

Outdoor technical skills classes (rock climbing, canoeing, fly fishing, cross country skiing, orienteering, and outdoor skills) discuss Leave No Trace Outdoor Ethics and how to limit recreational impact on outdoor resources.


The website URL where information about the wilderness or outdoors programs is available (optional):
Does the institution have sustainability-related themes chosen for themed semesters, years, or first-year experiences (e.g. choosing a sustainability-related book for common reading)?:
No

A brief description of the sustainability-related themes chosen for themed semesters, years, or first-year experiences:
---

The website URL where information about the sustainability-related themes is available (optional):
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Does the institution have programs through which students can learn sustainable life skills?:
No

A brief description of the programs through which students can learn sustainable life skills:
---

The website URL where information about the sustainable life skills programs is available (optional):
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Does the institution offer sustainability-focused student employment opportunities?:
Yes

A brief description of the sustainability-focused student employment opportunities offered by the institution:

Student workers are employed to aid recycling collection, increase sustainability presence at sporting and campus events, compile annual greenhouse gas emission reports, help with large gardening initiatives, our bike to campus initiatives, marketing, event coordination, Eco-rep program development, and other sustainability-related projects.


The website URL where information about the student employment opportunities is available:
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Does the institution have graduation pledges through which students pledge to consider social and environmental responsibility in future job and other decisions?:
No

A brief description of the graduation pledges:
---

The website URL where information about the graduation pledges is available (optional):
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Does the institution have other co-curricular sustainability programs and initiatives?:
Yes

A brief description of the other co-curricular sustainability programs and initiatives:

BHSU sustainability works to infuse of a culture of active living through bicycle transportation. We host weekly classes, rides and workshops to teach students bicycle-related skills.


The website URL where information about other co-curricular sustainability programs and initiatives is available (optional):
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Estimated percentage of students (full-time and part-time) that participate annually in sustainability-focused co-curricular education and outreach programs (0-100):
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Additional documentation to support the submission:
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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.