The Sustainable Learning Community

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University communities have the potential to serve as models in the development and application of sustainability principles and practices, not only by what they teach and study, but also by how they operate facilities and engage with off-campus partners. With the oldest endowed campus-wide sustainability program in the country, established in 1997, the University of New Hampshire has become a leader in advancing a campus culture of sustainability. The UNH experience provides a unique window into the development of a new and integrated approach to teaching, learning, research, and operations. It is also a valuable guide for other institutions that aim to enhance the quality of campus life while reducing their environmental footprint. The book’s organization along four functional domains (curriculum, operations, research, and engagement) allows faculty, staff, students, and managers to focus on sections of particular relevance to their university roles. Each chapter develops standards of best practices and presents interesting case studies to humanize the larger effort.

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Editorial Reviews

From the Publisher
“This is not an academic exercise. The Sustainable Learning Community describes the ten-year transformation of a university with ideas and aesthetics: using organic farming techniques to train and feed students; constructing a 12.7 mile pipeline to bring landfill gas to a new co-generation plant; and fostering lively engagement in public policy. An outstanding accomplishment! A privilege to read. A beacon and blueprint for all.”—Paul R. Epstein, M.D., M. P. H., Center for Health and the Global Environment, Harvard Medical School

“It has become clear that finding a way to meet the basic needs of all current and future humans on a finite and stressed planet requires transformative change in thinking, values, and action which must be led by higher education. The Sustainable Learning Community demonstrates how the University of New Hampshire is addressing this challenge in innovative and exciting ways. Highlighting 60 independent voices across its programs and academic disciplines, The Sustainable Learning Community provides an excellent framework for aligning the core functions of a university with sustainability principles, including integrating formal learning and campus operations to provide students with the knowledge, skills, and values they will need to be effective citizens and professionals in the twenty-first century.”—Anthony D. Cortese, President of Second Nature and Co-organizer of the American College & University Presidents Climate Commitment

“Campuses nationwide are endorsing sustainability initiatives. But there is much more to it than meets the eye. This comprehensive handbook provides detailed case studies for all aspects of campus sustainability projects. It is deep, integrative, and visionary. It is filled with great ideas for how to bring an entire campus together. —Mitchell Thomashow, President, Unity College

“A remarkable account of a campus-wide culture of sustainability at a state land grant institution, one that embraces aesthetics as well as science, food as well as fuel, and academics as well as community engagement. An amazing interdisciplinary, multidimensional project that acknowledges its historical roots and future responsibilities, the sustainable learning community at UNH is well worth studying. Highly recommended.”—Choice

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Product Details

  • ISBN-13: 9781584657712
  • Publisher: University Press of New England
  • Publication date: 6/1/2009
  • Edition description: New Edition
  • Pages: 288
  • Product dimensions: 6.10 (w) x 9.00 (h) x 0.90 (d)

Meet the Author

JOHN ABER is Professor of Environmental Science and former Vice President for Research, University of New Hampshire. TOM KELLY is Chief Sustainability Officer and Director, Office of Sustainability Programs.
BRUCE MALLORY is Provost and Executive Vice President.

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Table of Contents

Editor’s Preface – John Aber
Curriculum: Biodiversity and Ecosystems
Engaging Students in the Sciences – George Hurtt
How Does a Local Master of Public Health Program Address Global Emerging Infectious Disease? – Rosemary Caron
Sustainable Science and Engineering – Kevin Gardner and Nancy Kinner
UNH-EcoQuest and Sustainability in New Zealand—Te Rarangahau Taiao – Ria Brejaart, Kim Babbitt and Donna Dowal
Curriculum: Climate and Energy
ESCI 405: Global Environmental Change – Cameron Wake
The Energy Waste Watch Challenge and Student Energy Captains – Michele Holt-Shannon and Sara Cleaves
Organizing a Curriculum on the Environment—Inclusiveness or Security? – John Aber
Science, Politics, and Policy from Global to Local in an Undergraduate Seminar – Stacy Van Deveer
Curriculum: Food and Society
Dual Major in EcoGastronomy – Joanne Currancelentano
Integrating Sustainability into the Professional Development of Dietetic Interns – Joanne Burke
“The Real Dirt” – John E. Carroll
UNH CREAM – Drew Conroy and Peter Erickson
Curriculum: Culture and Sustainability
The Promise of the Sun – Tom Kelly
Artistic Engagement—Discovering and Developing a Theatrical Response to Sustainability – David Kaye
The University Dialogue and a Sense of Place – Joanne Curran-Celentano
How the Sustainable Living Minor Came to Be – Robert Eckert and Bert Cohen
Operations: Biodiversity and Ecosystems
Landscape Master Plan – Douglas Bencks
Land Use Committee – Tom Lee
The MUB Meadow – John L. Hart
Operations: Climate and Energy
It’s Risky Business Doing the Right Thing—The Co-Gen Plant and EcoLine – Paul Chamberlin and Matt O’Keefe
Transportation and Land Use – Steve Pesci
The UNH Greenhouse Gas Inventory – Brett Pasinella
The Energy Task Force—A Cross-Campus Collaboration to Address Climate Change – Sara Cleaves
Operations: Food and Society
The UNH Compost Program—From Waste to Compost – Elisabeth Farrell and Rick MacDonald
Acting Locally—The UNH Local Harvest Initiative – Elisabeth Farrell and Rick MacDonald
Innovative Dining Hall Hours and Plate Waste – Rick MacDonald
Operations: Culture and Sustainability
Developing Our Sense of Place—The Role of the Committee for Campus Aesthetics – Vicki C. Wright
Sustainable Building Design – Douglas Bencks
Moving the Kingsbury Mural – Douglas Bencks
Sustainable Buildings—Do You Want Fries with Your Building? No Thank You! – Douglas Bencks
Research on Biodiversity and Ecosystems
Cooperative Institute for Coastal and Estuarine Environmental Technology – Rich Langan and Dolores Leonard
The History of Marine Animal Populations – Andrew Rosenberg, Jeff Bolster, Karen Alexander, and Bill Leavenworth
The Stormwater Research Center – Tom Ballestero
Oyster Restoration—Planning, Research, and Implementation in New Hampshire – Ray Grizzle
Research on Climate and Energy
The Institute for the Study of Earth, Oceans, and Space – David S. Bartlett
The Environmental Research Group – Kevin Gardner and Taylor Eighmy
Multidisciplinary Design Competition – Jenna Jambeck and Kevin Gardner
Regional Climate Assessments—Supporting Informed Public Policy – Cameron Wake
Research on Food and Society
The UNH Organic Dairy Research Farm – John E. Carroll and Tom Kelly
The Atlantic Marine Aquaculture Center – Rich Langan and Dolores Leonard
The UNH Community Food, Nutrition, and Wellness Profile – Joanne Burke
From Campus Farm to Dining Hall – John McLean
Research on Culture and Sustainability
The Undergraduate Research Conference—A Key Ingredient in the Sustainable Learning Community – Eleanor Abrams
The Carsey Institute—Building Knowledge to Support Opportunity for Families in Sustainable Communities – Mil Duncan
The Growing a Green Generation Project – John Nimmo
Engagement in Biodiversity and Ecosystems
The New Hampshire Lakes Lay Monitoring Program—A Sustainable Model for Engaging Citizens – Jeffrey A. Schloss
Forest Watch—Enhancing Pre-College Understanding of Biodiversity and Ecosystems – Barry Rock
The UNH Marine Docent Program – Mark Wiley
Students Without Borders – Jenna Jambeck and Kevin Gardner
Engagement in Climate and Energy
Collaboration for a Low-Carbon Society—Carbon Solutions New England – Cameron Wake
The New Hampshire Carbon Challenge – Chris Skoglund, Denise Blaha, and Julia Dundorf
WildCAP Discount Program – Brett Pasinella
Informing Public Policy—Engagement on Climate with the State of New Hampshire – Cameron Wake
Engagement in Food and Society
The New Hampshire Farm to School Program – Elisabeth Farrell and Lynda Brushett
Cooperative Fisheries Research—The Innovative Fisherman – Ken LaValley
The Organic Garden Club – Rebecca Grube
New Hampshire Center for a Food Secure Future – Elisabeth Farrell
Engagement in Culture and Sustainability
Deliberation in the Civic Sector—The Role of Higher Education in Sustaining Democracy – Bruce L. Mallory
Building a Sustainable Community of Engaged Scholars—The UNH Outreach Scholars Academy – Julie E. Williams, Eleanor Abrams, and Christine Shea
Portsmouth Black Heritage Trail – Valerie Cunningham
Four Hands, One Heart—Ed and Mary Scheier Documentary and Exhibit – Tom Kelly

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