Sustainability Advocate Program
The Sustainability Advocate Program engages the broader NYU community in the effort to create a more sustainable campus. The program harnesses the effort, energy, and enthusiasm of employees to "green" their own departments and work spaces, while educating others and increasing awareness throughout the university.
Advocates are staff volunteers who will spend a few hours per month of paid work time, encouraging colleagues to make environmentally preferable choices and leading departmental efforts to conserve energy, purchase green office products, and improve recycling.
Every month, Sustainability Advocates receive information about a particular environmental concern (water, transportation, waste, etc.), as well as a targeted project for implementation in their work area. Additionally, every month the Advocates will send feedback to the Program, enabling sustainability staff to gather key information about recycling rates, energy consumption, or employee attitudes toward sustainability.
View these monthly newsletters and all the other resources here.
Why a Sustainability Advocate Program?
- To reduce the environmental footprint of NYU's administrative operations
- To enable staff to play a direct role and have a personal stake in greening efforts
- To build a sense of community by networking like-minded staff around a shared commitment to sustainability
- To enable us to use energy and other resources more efficiently, and save money
- To generate new ideas, test conservation strategies, and incubate best practices for sustainability
Advocate responsibilities will include Action, Reporting, and Education components.
Action: Identifying ways to green their departments and to implement university-wide policies that apply to office operations. In order to focus and maximize the impact of these activities, each month the Program will spotlight one particular area, such as lighting, computers, office supplies, or water fixtures. In each case, Advocates will help determine how their department could improve efficiency or minimize environmental impacts in that area, and then work to implement changes.
Reporting: Reporting environmental issues directly to the appropriate areas of the university administration. Examples include excessive heating or cooling of office spaces, dripping faucets, or missing recycling bins. Advocates will be trained to use appropriate work order forms and to know who to contact under what circumstances. Once per semester, Advocates will report on their involvement, chronicling issues and challenges, and evaluating their department's overall improvement in environmental footprint.
Education: Serving as a resource for their colleagues, posting signage designating themselves as knowledgeable contacts. As the go-to person in their department for information on workplace sustainability, Advocates will be conduits through which education and awareness-raising efforts reach the broader university community.
- attend one or more training sessions, led by NYU sustainability staff and others, equipping them with the knowledge they need
- receive an Advocate Handbook covering NYU recycling, energy and purchasing policies; data and statistics about environmental impacts; a guide to living green in NYC, contact information, and other useful resources
- have access to a "tool shed" of useful books, monitoring equipment, and other materials that can be checked out to aid in their duties
- attend meetings, to formally launch/complete each semester, as well as informal networking and "thank-you" events/dinners
If you are an NYU faculty-member or full-time employee working on the Washington Square Campus, please consider signing up as an Advocate by using this form.