OREGON STATE UNIVERSITY

Our Work

A mockup of the OSU Student Sustainability Center blueprints.

The SSI has historically housed five distinct groups, each headed by a different project coordinator and focusing on one of five different issues. Details on current and past projects pursued by these groups can be found to the right. A brief description of each group can be found below.

 

Energy

The energy group seeks to make energy usage at OSU more sustainable through increases in efficiency, decreases in consumption, and shifts in energy sources. 

Food

The food group works to address the sustainability of the food systems used by the OSU community, and bridge the disconnect between people and their sustenance.

Landscape

The landscape group is tasked with addressing the sustainable use of land at OSU.Plans - Historically, the landscape group has focused on the care of the SSI garden. The group hopes to broaden its focus beyond the SSI grounds in the future.

Transportation

The transportation group works to make alternative transportation at OSU fun, safe, accessible, and worthwhile by (a) educating the community on such modes of transit, and (b) making the OSU campus more pedestrian-, bike-, and bus-friendly.

 

Water

The water group works to purposefully engage students to choose more sustainable water use practices, as well as selecting better water sources in their community. 

 

Waste Reduction

The waste reduction group seeks to increase the sustainability of waste management of OSU.

 

 

Past Group Projects

2012

OSU Sustainability Festival

This CONNECT week event, organized jointly by the SSI, Campus Recycling, and the Sustainability Office, saw around 300 students, faculty, staff, and community members inundate the Student Sustainability Center grounds for three hours on a late-summer evening. The festival is intended to provide an opportunity for new and returning students to learn more about sustainability issues and connect with the wide range of groups in a fun, festive, and welcoming atmosphere. A number of campus and community groups were also present, providing food, activities, services, and a lot of information on issues, campaigns, and opportunities to get involved. For details, see the short article written about the festival at the time.

Earth Month

Every year, the SSI, Campus Recycling, and the Sustainability Office sponsor a seven-day Earth Week celebration. The 2012 celebration included too many events to fit into a single week, leading to an unofficial Earth Month. During Earth Week alone, the OSU community put on almost three dozen events, each one catering to a different aspect of sustainability or portion of the OSU community. It was a great pleasure to once again be a part of such a wonderful celebration of the earth and our relationship with it.

Sustainable Film Festival

Throughout April, the SSI hosted a series of four films to start discussions about some of society's most pressing issues: nuclear energy and waste storage, globalization, and environmentally safe food. Each film was followed by a different opportunity for viewers to learn more, get involved, and voice their opinions.

Student Experience Center

As of May 2012, the SSI was one of many student-coordinated programs planning on moving into the Student Experience Center. However, as the only student-coordinated program focused on sustainability issues, it fell to the SSI to work with OPSIS, Facility Services, the Memorial Union, and the Sustainability Office to create a vision of a sustainable center for OSU's student-coordinated programs. This work was started during the 2012 academic year, but wouldn't fully take off until the 2013 academic year.

Spring Sustainability Celebration

This end-of-the-year event brought together passionate students and staff to acknowledge the year’s sustainability accomplishments. Live music, vegetarian and vegan food, a container growing workshop, outdoor games, and group shout-outs made for an evening to remember.

 

2011

Sustainable Career Fair
This year the OSU Career Services Center has teamed up with several groups around campus to create a Green/Sustainable Career Fair for spring term. This project isin its infancy stages. Stay tuned for more updates on this project.

SPROUT
Brought together music, materials, and students in the quad for students, faculty, staff, and community members to come start their favorite plants from seed and learn how to care for them at home.

Annual Spring Garden @ SSC
Planned, prepared, and planted the annual spring garden at the OSU Student Sustainability Center. Students integrated ideas from organic farming and permaculture into the garden plans. Plants for the garden were started from seed or donated by local nurseries. It was tended over the summer by SSI staff, and will come back to flourish next year.

 

2010

 

Earth Week 2010
The Waste Reduction Group worked on an Earth Day campaign to get people to pledge to reduce. There were several options, including pledging to get outside, go vegetarian, or not drive a car, for anywhere from a day to a week. We had many people sign up and pledge to make these differences. (This would become the Campus Carbon Challenge.)