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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
EN-4: Outreach Materials and Publications

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 a central sustainability website that consolidates information about the institution's sustainability efforts?:
Yes

A brief description of the central sustainability website (optional):

The Office of Environmental Policy maintains a website that consolidates information on campus sustainability initiatives. The website highlights sustainability in the University news, social media, environmental policy updates, the Climate Action Plan, water conservation, energy projects, sustainable design guidelines, recycling, transportation, environmental literacy, and current and past sustainability events and initiatives. Additionally, the EcoHusky Student Group website contains information directed towards students, such as sustainability efforts by students, a short list of classes with sustainability content, and information for getting involved with sustainability initiatives.


The website URL for the central sustainability website:
Does the institution have a sustainability newsletter?:
Yes

A brief description of the sustainability newsletter:

The Sustainability Newsletter highlights major sustainability updates, events, and milestones for the preceding semester. It is published by the Office of Environmental Policy at the end of the spring and fall semesters.


The website URL for the sustainability newsletter:
Does the institution have social media platforms (e.g. Facebook, Twitter, interactive blogs) that focus specifically on campus sustainability?:
Yes

A brief description of the social media platforms that focus on sustainability:

The Office of Environmental Policy uses Facebook, Twitter, and Instagram to promote campus sustainability initiatives and events and increase environmental awareness.
Twitter: https://twitter.com/UConnOEP
Instagram: https://www.instagram.com/uconnoep/


The website URL of the primary social media platform focused on sustainability:
Does the institution have regular coverage of sustainability in the main student newspaper, either through a regular column or a reporter assigned to the sustainability beat?:
Yes

A brief description of the regular coverage of sustainability in the main student newspaper:

UConn Today publishes articles through its column “Sustainable UConn”, which can also be found on their website with the tag "sustainability." The column covers sustainability events, new green initiatives, and environmental research.


The website URL for regular coverage of sustainability in the main student newspaper:
Does the institution produce a vehicle to publish and disseminate student research on sustainability?:
Yes

A brief description of the vehicle to publish and disseminate student research on sustainability:

The Frontiers in Undergraduate Research poster conference is held every spring and is the main vehicle allowing all student researchers to present their research, and always contains projects related to sustainability.
http://ugradresearch.uconn.edu/frontiers-in-undergraduate-research/

The CESE (Center for Environmental Sciences & Enginering) database consolidates research related to climate change impact, mitigation, and adaptation, by both faculty and students. It includes research that covers alternative energy, biodiversity, climate change, environmental responsibility, human health and behavior, environmental technology, and pollution. http://www.cese.uconn.edu/research.html

Additionally, the C2E2 group provides lists of publications related to clean energy advancements made by faculty and student teams at UConn.


The website URL for the vehicle to publish and disseminate student research on sustainability:
Does the institution have building signage that highlights green building features?:
Yes

A brief description of building signage that highlights green building features :

UConn has installed “energy dashboards” in two of the newly constructed, LEED-certified buildings. These provide data for the energy and water usage of the buildings and also highlight the buildings’ green and low-impact design features, such as bioretention basins and sustainably-sourced building materials.

UConn offers a “Green Campus Tour”, which features signs and plaques highlighting green features on campus, such as Low-Impact development and green buildings.


The website URL for building signage that highlights green building features :
Does the institution have signage and/or brochures that include information about sustainable food systems?:
Yes

A brief description of the signage and/or brochures that include information about sustainable food systems:

The Dining Services web site houses information on sustainable food initiatives, including 10 reasons to buy local food, monthly newsletters, Spring Valley Student Farm, Dining Service Apiaries, and UConn’s Real Slow Food initiatives.

The Department of Dining Services recently sourcing all of its fish from Red's Best, a local fishing company. https://uconnoep.wordpress.com/2016/01/07/reds-best-sustainable-fish-at-uconn/

Following the Food Waste study EcoHusky did in conjunction with the Dining Services, posters have been put up in UConn's North Dining Hall that provide infographics of the results from the study and information about smarter eating habits.

Additionally, as part of its responsibilities as a federal land grant University, UConn maintains public access to grass fed dairy and beef operations, with signage explaining the programs and sustainable design of the building enclosures where applicable.


The website URL for food service area signage and/or brochures that include information about sustainable food systems:
Does the institution have signage on the grounds about sustainable groundskeeping and/or landscaping strategies employed?:
Yes

A brief description of the signage on the grounds about sustainable groundskeeping and/or landscaping strategies employed:

The Hillside Environmental Education Park (HEEP), UConn’s former landfill site, has signage on the grounds, as does the campus arboretum. The Office of Environmental Policy is currently working to collaborate with the University’s Signage Committee to produce signs on campus that label the sustainable features, such as rain gardens, green roofs, bioretention basins, etc.
UConn also has both grass-fed beef cattle and dairy barns on Horsebarn Hill with educational signage.

Information about Low Impact Development signage can be found here:
http://ecohusky.uconn.edu/development/lid.html


The website URL for the signage on the grounds about sustainable groundskeeping and/or landscaping strategies employed:
Does the institution produce a sustainability walking map or tour?:
Yes

A brief description of the sustainability walking map or tour:

UConn’s online sustainability map provides a tour of the sustainability features on campus, including rain gardens, compost facility, and pervious pavement.

http://ecohusky.uconn.edu/development/tour.html

UConn also provides a guide that highlights 40 of the hundreds of varieties of trees on campus, for “a self-guided tour visiting trees of special interest.” The UConn Storrs campus is recognized as a living arboretum of historic interest, including outstanding specimens of rarity, importance, or advanced age. The walking tour highlights these features:

http://www.uconnarboretum.uconn.edu/content/TREE_GUIDE_CAMPUS_WALK.pdf

Additionally, there is a Low-Impact Development (LID) walking tour designed by the Natural Resources Conservation Academy (a program for high school students that is put on by UConn faculty and grad students in the NRE department)

http://ecohusky.uconn.edu/docs/development/LID-tour.pdf


The website URL of the sustainability walking map or tour:
Does the institution produce a guide for commuters about how to use more sustainable methods of transportation?:
Yes

A brief description of the guide for commuters about how to use more sustainable methods of transportation:

There is a shuttle service for students and faculty to take from the Storrs campus to the UConn Health Center in Farmington.

Transportation Services’ website lists travel alternatives. This includes the Windham Regional Transit District, which offers a bus service between Storrs and Willimantic (free for those with a UConn ID), and also a free service of the Connecticut Department of Transportation called CTrides, which offers assistance on commuting options (sharing a car, vanpool, bus, etc.).

There are also multiple busses to shuttle students around campus, which decreases the need for cars driving around campus.


The website URL for the guide for commuters about how to use more sustainable methods of transportation:
Does the institution produce navigation and educational tools for bicyclists and pedestrians (e.g. covering routes, inter-modal connections, policies, services, and safety)? :
Yes

A brief description of the navigation and educational tools for bicyclists and pedestrians:

UConn’s bike sharing program UConn Cycle share allows students, faculty, and staff to borrow a bike using a UConn ID. The UConn Cycles’ website describes safety tips for bicyclists and the UConn Police Department has a website that covers pedestrian and bike safety. The campus has pavement markings that indicate bike
lanes. 

http://recreation.uconn.edu/programs/cycle-share/


The website URL for navigation and educational tools for bicyclists and pedestrians:
Does the institution produce a guide for green living and/or incorporating sustainability into the residential experience?:
Yes

A brief description of the guide for green living and incorporating sustainability into the residential experience:

UConn provides guides on incorporating sustainability into the residential experience by providing resources to resident assistants who can disseminate the information among their students. The following PDFs can be converted into bulletin board notices to hang up in dorm hallways and common areas, and contain information suitable for dissemination to students in dorms, apartments, or in general.
http://ecohusky.uconn.edu/docs/outreach/resources/EnergyEfficiency.pdf
http://ecohusky.uconn.edu/docs/outreach/resources/DontThrowThatOut.pdf

In addition, material is available to RAs and other members of campus through the EcoMadness engagement page: http://www.ecohusky.uconn.edu/engagement/ecomadness.html


The website URL for the guide for green living and incorporating sustainability into the residential experience:
Does the institution produce other sustainability outreach materials or publications not covered above?:
Yes

A brief description of these materials or publications:

The College of Agriculture, Health and Natural Resources Extension is housed at the Storrs Campus, which produces newsletters, youth programs, homeowner extension materials, agricultural extension materials, and resource use materials for the University, surrounding communities, and state.
For example, this is the publication on Water Quality and the Home Landscape: http://www.sustainability.uconn.edu/factsheets.html


The website URL for these materials or publications:
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.