Our host institutions sincerely welcome you to the region and invite you to explore their sustainability programs. Together we can engage campus change agents to lead the global sustainability transformation.
Eastern Washington University is honored to be a host sponsor for the 2019 AASHE Conference. On behalf of the university, I’m pleased to welcome conference attendees to Spokane and our home in the beautiful Inland Northwest.
EWU is a leader in improving campus sustainability and promoting sustainable practices. Over the last year, for example, the university has:
Higher education is a crucial driver for sustainable practices. Collaborations with regional partners create multiple opportunities to design, test, and implement innovative solutions to improve our communities and quality of life.
We’re doing great things at EWU. I’m delighted that you’ll learn more about us and our work during this valuable conference.
On behalf of Gonzaga University, I welcome you to Spokane, Washington for the Association for the Advancement of Sustainability in Higher Education Conference and Expo. As a Jesuit, Catholic, humanistic University, Gonzaga is committed to caring for the planet, supporting marginalized communities, and fostering the prosperity of our regional economy-these three principles are cornerstones of sustainability and prominent within our University mission statement.
Our commitment to sustainability is actively demonstrated in numerous ways:
It is an exciting time to be in Spokane. I hope our city and campus-a short walk from the Convention Center–inspires you as we learn together from one another’s solutions and share our passion for a better tomorrow through sustainability.
Thayn M. Mcculloh, D.Phil.
It is with great pleasure that Thompson Rivers University extends a heartfelt welcome to attendees of the 2019 AASHE Conference & Expo.
This year’s theme, Co-Creating a Sustainable Economy, feels particularly timely as people, organizations and governments around the world unite to tackle root causes of climate change together.
Increasing sustainability has been one of five strategic priorities established by TRU since 2014. As part of this commitment, the university prioritizes sustainability initiatives that mutually benefit the university and the communities it serves.
Eight years ago, TRU formally embarked upon a journey to hold itself accountable to achieving significant gains in campus sustainability. As a charter participant of AASHE’s STARS rating system, TRU was among the first post-secondary institutions to commit to completing a sustainability assessment in 2010.
In 2018, TRU became the first post-secondary institution in Canada to earn a platinum rating for its sustainability initiatives and achievements through the STARS rating system as a result of the perseverance, passion and hard work of the entire TRU community. What the TRU community has achieved is proof that individual actions make a difference and that collectively, we are capable of solving one of the greatest challenges of our time.
TRU is committed to continuing to be a global sustainability leader and looks forward to continuing to work with organizations like AASHE to create a more sustainable world for our future and for the generations that come next.
In closing, I would like to wish all attendees a wonderful conference experience.
On behalf of the University of Washington Tacoma, I am delighted to welcome you to Spokane for the Association for the Advancement of Sustainability in Higher Education Conference and Expo. We are proud that you will witness firsthand the wonderful culture of sustainability innovation in the Evergreen state.
For us at UW Tacoma, as for all of you, sustainability is more than just a set of actions. We believe in not only practicing sustainability ourselves but also in training the next generation to be good stewards of the places they call home. This philosophy has been firmly integrated into the fabric of our campus culture since our founding in 1990. Our facilities occupy a set of renovated 19th century warehouses that have revived an entire section of downtown Tacoma. Our curricula equip our students with interdisciplinary, inclusive frameworks that prepare them to be leaders in sustainable community-making.
Like all of you, we embrace sustainability fundamentally as good civic stewardship, and good for our bottom line. Our AASHE membership over the years has been incredibly valuable, allowing us to keep abreast of best practices in campus design and facility management. We engage in constant cycles of upgrades and replacements to attain greater efficiency in resource use. Through lighting retrofits, motor replacements, weatherization, boiler conversions, composting, landscape redesign, green vendor requirements and ongoing remediation of historic groundwater contamination, we are driving down our use of energy and water, carbon emissions and waste emissions.
Our commitment to sustainability is a natural extension of, and is actually indistinguishable from, the responsibility to community we have as an urban-serving university campus and an anchor institution in our city. We cannot imagine not teaching, researching and serving our community from a sustainable foundation.
This year in Spokane, as at every AASHE conference, we have an opportunity to step back from the day-to-day details of running our campuses to network, search for new tactics and strategies, and reignite our inspiration. Events like this play a key role in keeping our momentum going, as universities gear up to address some of the biggest existential challenges humans have ever faced.
Now more than ever, the big picture thinking we need to move forward will emerge from gatherings like this and associations like AASHE. I’m excited to learn about the ways we can make our institutions, and the communities that host them, more sustainable. Again, welcome to this year’s event and please enjoy your stay.
Mark A. Pagano