Who Does This Work
Who Does Sustainability at DU?
Sustainability work does not occur in a vacuum, nor does it fall into the lap of any single person, department or division at DU. In order for us to succeed in creating a just and sustainable campus, we need the help and expertise of everyone. Below are key campus partners in sustainability, continually making progress toward our 2025 goals and beyond.
The Sustainability Council was founded as a shared governance body made up of faculty, staff, students and administrators who knew that DU had to take action on sustainability. Over the years, this group has served as an open organization where all are welcome, where all voices are equally heard, and where the larger sustainability strategy at DU is discussed and debated. Join us at quarterly meetings and help shape the future of sustainability at DU.Learn More
Urban Sustainability Cohort
DU Grand Challenges brings faculty, staff and students together with diverse regional community leaders in DUGC Collective Impact Cohorts to carry out initiatives that spark systematic positive change. Four DUGC Cohorts now focus on achieving different results. For the DUGC Urban Sustainability Cohort, this desired result is: “The Denver region supports just, inclusive, and thriving communities where people and nature flourish.Learn More
Center for Sustainability
The Center for Sustainability is a hub for sustainability activities and programs at DU, as well as the home of the Sustainability Internship Program. The Center for Sustainability manages over 20 unique sustainability programs which work to create a more just and sustainable future for the DU and Denver community, seeks to build connections between students' co-curricular and classroom experiences, and helps to foster a collaborative community rooted in passion, creativity and tangible outcomes.Learn More
The USG Sustainability Committee (SusCom) manages the Green Fee that is collected from all undergraduate students as a part of their student activity fee. Overseen by co-chairs made up of one elected USG Senator and one non-USG student, SusCom is open to all students who want to have a voice in how the Green Fee is spent each year. Any student or student group at DU is able to apply for funding for SusCom in order to implement projects, programs, and events that advance DU’s sustainability goals.Learn More
Housing and Residential Education (HRE)
As students’ first home and community at DU, Housing and Residential Education (HRE) plays a central role in educating and engaging students in intentional and sustainable living. HRE partners closely with the Center for Sustainability to ensure both move-in and move-out produce less waste, and with Custodial Services to provide recycling bins in all resident rooms and compost and recycling in the lobbies of every residence hall. HRE and Facilities ensure the buildings are as efficient as possible.
Additionally, HRE sponsors numerous programs to increase awareness and educate about sustainable personal lifestyle choices. Educational bulletin boards and hall meetings discuss waste, energy, water and transportation best practices. Community-wide programs hosted by RAs engage residents in how to live sustainably.
Learn more about HRE’s sustainability initiatives here.
Denver Dining by Sodexo
As DU’s contracted food service provider, Sodexo works to ensure the food we eat on campus is nutritious and delicious, and they have set aggressive goals toward local and sustainable sourcing and disposal. To this end, Sodexo signed on to the Real Food Challenge in 2014, and met its goal to serve 20% Real Food (local and sustainably sourced) in the dining halls. Sodexo was also integral in creating the Sustainable Food Policy at DU, which continues to drive sustainable practices across all good service.
Beyond this, Sodexo has implemented several programs to reduce waste in the dining halls and kitchens, as well as being key partners in alleviating food insecurity at DU through their generous support of the DU Food Pantry and the Swipe Out Hunger program.
Read more about Sodexo’s sustainability initiatives here.
Parking and Mobility Services
Parking and Mobility Services’ mission is to help the DU community get to, from and around campus. They provide a myriad of options that make getting out of your single occupancy vehicle (SOV) affordable and convenient. They register bikes to help keep them safe from theft and run a campus shuttle that improves connections to light rail and moves people quickly across campus and to community amenities. Parking and Mobility Services is dedicated to making alternative transportation the norm at DU.
Aramark Custodial Services
Custodial Services play a central role in DU’s goals of becoming a zero waste campus by 2035. Without our custodians, our waste would not end up being recycled or composted. Custodial Services is leading the way in green cleaning practices, reducing chemicals and allergens.
Beyond this, Aramark is a key monetary supporter of the DU Food Pantry, a program that ensures everyone in the DU Community has food to eat when they aren’t sure where their next meal might come from.
Learn more about Custodial Service’s work here.
Following Transformative Direction Four of DU Impact 2025, DU is advancing our institutional structures and becoming more agile and
networked with Pioneer@Work, DU’s talent management platform. Pioneer@Work launched our newest module, the learning management system (LMS), in August 2020, and the system empowers employees to seek out learning opportunities, such as instructor-led classes, e-Learnings, and 16,000 LinkedIn Learning courses. You may have experienced this powerful platform as you completed the DEI training or Faculty Institute for Inclusive Teaching (FIIT). This platform now hosts a curricula for Sustainability at DU. Targeting Sustainability Council members, these core sessions and associated playlist of mini workshops is open to anyone wanting to deepen their knowledge of sustainability and how this work looks at DU..
As part of employee benefit packages, Human Resources and Inclusive Community (HRIC) also provides an RTD transit EcoPass to all full-time employees. This benefit allows full access to the transit system, making commuting easier and stress-free.
Learn more about the Sustainability Curriculum in Pioneer@Work here
Anderson Academic Commons (AAC)
The LEED Silver-certified Anderson Academic Commons (AAC) has had a Sustainability Committee since 2014. It is open to participation by faculty, staff and student employees of any library or academic support unit housed in the AAC. The AAC regularly sponsors films, panels, staff and faculty trainings, special events, and the quarterly Zero Waste Finals event with treats and a trash diversion game. With the support of building users, the AAC has the best day-in-day-out waste diversion rate on the DU campus: 69 percent of its waste was kept out of the landfill stream on its most recent waste audit. The AAC frequently co-sponsors events with the Center for Sustainability and other groups, and sponsors a team tending two plots in the Bridge Community Garden. Learn more here about our programs.
The University Libraries maintain a substantial collection of policy, scientific and popular environmental publications for the use of the DU Community. Our library research guides on sustainability topics are available here.
Health and Counseling Center
Well-being is the on-going process of reflecting on and engaging with your values and actions to help you thrive now and into the future, and it is the mission of Health Promotion and the Health and Counseling Center to ensure that everyone at DU is able to be well. Among the eight dimensions of well-being that Health Promotion has identified is Environmental Well-Being, which describes a safe and sustainable environment as crucial to personal well-being. Living a more sustainable life can improve health — both physical and mental — and the HCC works to make these connections as students navigate the demands of college life.
Read more about the 8 Dimensions of Well-Being here.