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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 Gold
Overall Score 81.30
Liaison Sarah Munro
Submission Date June 30, 2017
Executive Letter Download

STARS v2.1

University of Connecticut
AC-7: Incentives for Developing Courses

Status Score Responsible Party
Complete 2.00 / 2.00 Sarah Munro
Sustainability Coordinator
Office of Environmental Policy
"---" indicates that no data was submitted for this field

Does the institution have an ongoing program or programs that offer incentives for faculty in multiple disciplines or departments to develop new sustainability courses and/or incorporate sustainability into existing courses?:
Yes

A brief description of the program(s), including positive outcomes during the previous three years (e.g. descriptions of new courses or course content resulting from the program):

Environmental Literacy EPAC Workgroup

With approximately 22,000 students located at the UConn Storrs campus, the University of Connecticut is aware more than ever of its impact on the local environment and has therefore increased its efforts to educate students, faculty, and staff regarding their daily impact upon important natural resources. To further these efforts, the Environmental Literacy Workgroup strives to identify areas of improvement in environmental awareness and education, as well as to advertise and promote environmental leadership and outreach throughout the UConn community. By promoting new academic courses, hosting environmental speakers series and "green" career panels, and developing environmental outreach and education events, we continue to advance environmental stewardship and progress at UConn.

This workgroup has since expanded to form the Green Campus Academic Network (GCAN), with the purpose of raising awareness among interested faculty members about opportunities for engagement and collaboration in campus sustainability activities, events, and research opportunities. http://ecohusky.uconn.edu/green-campus-academic-network/


A brief description of the incentives that faculty members who participate in the program(s) receive:

Sustainability is one of only three areas specifically mentioned in the Academic Plan, providing institutional support and resource allocation that is targeted towards the development of programs related to sustainability.

The Environmental Literacy EPAC Workgroup participated in the Climate Change Adaptation task force, which drafted an amendment to the University Climate Action Plan that specifically addresses the need to focus institutional resources on sustainability-related research, which the University President signed on March 26, 2012.

http://www.ecohusky.uconn.edu/docs/climate/Adaptation%20narrative.pdf

Incentives for sustainable building technology are also being written into existing plans for new construction projects via interdisciplinary collaboration during the planning phase. For example, in October 2015 construction began on the new Biotech Park project has $172 million earmarked for sustainable design, including a state-of-the art human-centered smart building research project. Members of the teams pursuing this research were included in the Environmental Policy Advisory Committee workgroups, permitting the vision of the lead scientists, philosophers, and researchers to have their vision translated into action items for the university.

Finally, the University Senate is currently considering approval of a Sustainability General Education Requirement, which would require students to take at least one sustainability related course during their education at UConn. Having this requirement will incentivize professors to add sustainability components to their principle coursework, and to offer more sustainability related courses in general.


The website URL where information about the programs or initiatives is available:
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.