Get involved with the Office of Sustainability
Depending on your level of interest, there are many different ways to work directly with the Office of Sustainability. Leaders of sustainability-related student groups gather twice a year to exchange information and coordinate their efforts.
Volunteer Listserv – Be the first to know about volunteer opportunities
Green Graduation Pledge – Graduating seniors commit to sustainability after Wake Forest
Greeks Go Green – Peer-to-peer education within Greek life at Wake Forest
Sustainability Ambassadors – Student sustainability peer educators at Wake Forest
Sustainability Internships – Available internships and application form
Student-Athlete Sustainability Network – Varsity student-athlete sustainability peer educators
Student groups with a sustainability-related focus
Becoming a member of these student groups and organizations is another way to contribute to building a sustainable campus community.
Sustainability Theme House – A chance for students to immerse themselves in sustainable living
CommonPlace – Student organization at the Wake Forest School of Divinity
Net Impact Club – Student organization at the Wake Forest Schools of Business
Student Environmental Action Coalition – Wake Forest’s student-run environmental group
Outdoor Pursuits – An outdoor adventure program for students
Campus Kitchen – A food recycling and service group
Deacon Dining Connection – Student organization dedicated to influencing and discussing dining decisions at Wake Forest
Eric Gorzeman, a Business and Enterprise Management major and Entrepreneurship and Social Enterprise minor, will be joining the Vanguard Group in Charlotte following graduation. During his time with the Office of Sustainability, Eric served as the Carbon Footprint Energy intern (2015-2016) and the Re-Cycle Bike-share Program intern (2016-2017).
Eric’s reflection on the internship: By interning at the Office of Sustainability, I have gained project management, leadership, and communication skills. This internship experience has also inspired me to eventually work in the green energy industry, in a business capacity. In addition to my personal and professional growth, I met different friends that I may not have met otherwise, and had a great time working with the Wake Forest staff and community as a whole.
Julie Kanter has been involved with the Office of Sustainability since 2015, serving as the Earth Day Fair Coordination intern, the Arbor Day Events intern, and the Event Analysis intern. Julie graduated cum laude with degrees in Economics and Spanish. Julie’s involvement with campus events—from beginning to end—has been essential. Julie will be moving to Chicago following graduation, where she will join Fifth Third Bank’s Credit Leadership Program.
Julie’s reflection on the internship: Interning with the Office of Sustainability has provided me with the invaluable opportunity to grow my intellectual curiosity and professional skills while interacting with a supportive and motivational team of colleagues. The Office has supported, challenged, taught, and guided me over the last three years and I am so thankful for that. I know the skills and relationships I have fostered through the Office will always be present in my personal and professional life and I am anxious to see all the success that comes to my fellow interns.
Akua Maat, a magna cum laude graduate who majored in both Latin and Women’s Gender, and Sexuality Studies, has been a Campus Garden intern since her sophomore year at Wake Forest. Akua’s strong commitment to the nourishment and growth of the Campus Garden will yield results well into the future. She will work with CityYear next year as a mentor in a Philadelphia public school and eventually plans to pursue a PhD in sociology and a career as a college professor.
Akua’s reflection on the internship: Interning with the Office of Sustainability and working so closely with the garden has opened me up to a world I couldn’t have anticipated my freshman year. I’ve learned an extraordinary amount about myself and the world around me. After three years as an intern and a soon-to-be-graduate, what I have gained and appreciated the most is the capacity I now have to implement sustainable practices in my life beyond Wake Forest.
Emily McMullen, a biology and chemistry double major and an environmental studies minor, graduated magna cum laude and with honors. This year, Emily served as an Energy intern working with Facilities & Campus Services to draft an energy plan for the University. After graduation, Emily will be teaching high school science at Geneva Classical Academy in Lakeland, Florida. She plans to pursue a PhD in marine molecular ecology.
Emily’s reflection on the internship: My time as an intern with Facilities and Campus Services and the Office of Sustainability has provided me with an incredible professional skill set which will serve me well in all my future endeavors. The high level of expectations have allowed me to strengthen my communication and technical skills, and appropriately plan for long term projects and goals. The friendships I have developed with the other interns have been invaluable additions to my college experience- I am very thankful for the opportunity I have had to work with many of them this past year.
We also want to congratulate our former interns who graduated with the Class of 2017:
Ann Nguyen, Photography intern (Fall 2014 – Spring 2015) and Freelance Photographer (Fall 2016 – Spring 2017). Ann graduated cum laude and with honors in Studio Art.
Kristen Cortese, Office of Energy Management intern (Fall 2014, Spring 2015).
The entire Sustainability staff wishes all 2017 graduates the best in the next chapter of their lives and careers.
The creation of the Green Graduation Pledge allows future alumni to carry on Wake Forest’s legacy of sustainability and civic responsibility throughout their careers and lives.
All signatories received a reusable travel mug printed with the pledge to reinforce sustainable habits. This is the seventh year that Wake Forest graduates have participated in this nationwide pledge movement.
Volunteers will be at the graduation ticket pick-up table outside of the University Bookstore from 9:00-5:00 on Friday, May 12 to assist seniors in signing the pledge. As a reminder of their commitment, signees will be awarded a reusable travel mug, while supplies last.
This is Wake Forest’s seventh year offering the Green Graduation Pledge to students. The tradition began over 30 years ago at Humboldt State University. Today, the pledge has been offered at over 100 colleges and universities throughout the world facilitated by the Graduation Pledge Alliance.
The itinerary* posted by the march organizers can be found below.
7:00 a.m. WFU bus departs from the flagpole outside of the Benson Center
9:00 a.m. Arrive at Shaw University in downtown Raleigh
9:30 a.m. Begin lining up for the march
10:00 a.m. March for Science begins
12:00 p.m. March for Science concludes at Moore Square
12:00 p.m. Rally and Science Fair begin
2:00 p.m. March for Science activities conclude
2:15 p.m. WFU bus departs from Moore Square
4:30 p.m. Bus arrives back at Wake Forest University*
Each rider will pay a flat fee of $15 for transportation. By signing up, you will reserve your seat on the bus and also commit to paying the $15 fee (note that cash and check are the preferred methods of payment; make checks out to Wake Forest University).
Seats are limited and will be allocated on a first come, first served basis. Click here to reserve your seat.
* Itinerary times are subject to change.
Greeks Go Green
The Greeks Go Green intern will assume leadership of this peer education initiative by holding regular meetings with chapter representatives, recruiting new representatives as needed, organizing monthly presentations and events throughout the semester, and liaising with the Office of Student Engagement. The intern must be an active member of a recognized Greek social or service organization on campus. Excellent collaborative leadership and organizational skills are required.
The team of Campus Garden interns collaborates with expert garden mentors, as well as faculty, staff, student, and community volunteers, to manage the Campus Garden on Polo Road. Managing this outdoor learning space for sustainable agriculture includes, but is not limited to, developing and maintaining rotation and cover cropping plans, starting and transplanting seasonally appropriate crops, watering, mulching, and composting food/yard waste. Interns coordinate volunteer hours and engage volunteers in conversations about the differences between conventional and sustainable agriculture. In addition, interns explore service learning possibilities with interested faculty, organize major events in the campus garden, and maintain a vibrant and engaging communications plan. The successful candidate will have demonstrated leadership experience in a collaborative team environment.
Summer Campus Garden Manager
The Summer Campus Garden Manager will serve from May through August 2017. Under the direction of Office of Sustainability staff, and with support from professional horticultural staff, this position is responsible for the daily, weekly, and season-long management of a one-acre diversified produce operation. The manager coordinates all aspects of garden production, manages volunteers, facilitates participation by multiple service-related groups, and serves as a public face of the garden to the campus community. Applicants should have experience working in a small-scale agriculture environment and with a variety of age groups. Qualified candidates will have a demonstrated ability to work independently and collaboratively and a passion for garden education. Experience in ecology, community-based agriculture, and/or food justice is preferred. Learn more about the position in the full job description.
Sustainability in Dining
The dining intern will work collaboratively with Deacon Dining staff to promote the sustainability initiatives underway on campus. Reduction of food waste, sourcing local and/or organic ingredients, and emphasizing a plant-forward plate are just a few of the many initiatives advanced through Deacon Dining.
Propose a Unique Internship
Have a great idea for a sustainability-focused internship that’s not listed? Submit a unique internship proposal. We are always looking for new, innovative ways for students to generate sustainability-focused solutions on campus. Your proposal should include an articulation of the need for the proposed project and the landscape of issues surrounding the project.
We are seeking nominations for students, faculty, and staff who advance sustainability through:
- Resource Conservation (energy, water, or waste reduction)
- Nominations may include projects and efforts that have resulted in energy conservation, water conservation, waste reduction, or a combination of these areas.
- Academics and Engagement (teaching, research, engaged learning)
- Nominations may include classes with sustainability-focused learning outcomes, research in sustainability-focused areas, and/or opportunities to learn about sustainability through practical application.
- Service and Social Action
- Nominations may include service projects or campaigns that result in social and/or environmental justice outcomes for individuals and the communities served.
- Bright Ideas (innovative ideas that have been or could be implemented)
- Nominations may include sustainability-focused projects, efforts, or ideas that are unique and innovative on the Wake Forest campus.
- Nominations will include individuals who have empowered others to lead the sustainability transformation.
Nominations will be evaluated based on:
- The way(s) in which the nominee(s) has/have helped advance one or more of the WFU campus sustainability goals,
- The level of participation by colleagues within the department or unit,
- Measurable impact among constituents across campus or in the community served (students, faculty, staff, and/or community members) and
- Any additional information or data available to support the nomination.
Self-nominations are accepted. We look forward to hearing about the work of all the inspiring change agents across campus.
- February 2016 marked the launch of the Wake Forest Re-Cycle Program—the multi-semester undertaking of previous Office of Sustainability intern Alyshah Aziz ‘16. This past fall, Re-Cycle provided more than 80 semester-long bicycle rentals to students across campus. We are working to add more bikes to the fleet to meet an ever-increasing demand. Interested in checking out a bike for spring 2017? Click on “Transportation” under the Initiatives tab on the Office of Sustainability website to fill out an interest form.
- On Move-In Day, Office of Sustainability interns distributed over 900 personal recycling totes to first-year students to help them divert waste from local landfills. More than 400 of these bins were cleaned and refurbished from the previous year.
- Over 200 members from the Wake Forest Class of 2016 made an enduring commitment to sustainability by signing the Green Graduation Pledge, an opportunity that over 100 other colleges and universities offer their graduates. By signing the Green Grad Pledge, graduates vow to take into account the social and environmental consequences of their future endeavors and to work to improve the sustainability of the communities in which they work, live, and play.
- Wake Forest students banded together to reduce their waste at move-out. In 2016, Deacs Donate helped place over 31,000 pounds of clothing and other essentials into the hands of those in need in the Winston-Salem area.
- In 2016, Campus Garden interns and volunteers nurtured over 30 different crops, providing Campus Kitchen and the Wake Forest community with local, sustainable produce. Expect the offerings to grow in 2017 with blackberries, blueberries, and concord grapes. Attend open volunteer hours next semester to check out all the garden has to offer.
Are you a student working on sustainability-focused research at Wake Forest? Send us an email at email@example.com so that we can feature you in an upcoming story.
To date, the Laikipian have produced the “Hunt Me Not” comic book series, the “Mending Fences” comic book series, the “Let’s Go Wild” coloring book, several environmental posters, and even a conservation board game that will be complete in early 2017.
Materials disseminated by the Laikipian serve as teaching aids in schools, community groups, and for the general public. Some of the posters have even been used as models for wall murals painted on school walls and town centers. To date, the posters alone have reached over 6,000 students in over 50 schools and in 18 communities. As more of the group’s materials are placed online, the reach continues to broaden to outside audiences.
“The Laikipian is a movement that’s close to my heart, I discovered the group at a time when both of us were trying to find outlets in creating conservation content and awareness in Kenya and beyond,” Luka said.
To Luka, art is a universal language that can be harnessed to build an informed network of young sustainability champions who will ultimately play a pivotal role in reversing current trends of environmental degradation in Kenya.
“Blending In,” an independent documentary, is Luka’s favorite project to date—it is also the project that introduced Luka to the Laikipian team. She describes it as a labor of love and a project of passion.
The story focuses on how communities living along Kenya’s Tana Delta region are using local solutions to mitigate climate change. In this region, the communities of farmers, fishermen, and pastoralists have a history of conflict due to depleting resources of land and water.
Serving as co-executive producer, co-producer, director, and voiceover artist, Luka and a five person crew took first place in both the Inaugural Mohammed Amin Media Awards (MAAMAS 2015) and runners up the Africa Climate Change and Environmental Awards (ACCER 2014).
“Going to communities that live miles from each other and who do not know the term climate change as we know it was a humbling experience,” Luka said.
Luka’s experience with “Blending In” eventually landed her a spot in the Wake Forest Documentary Film program.
“My daily prayer is God please give me the strength to fulfill my passion. Hold my hand through this journey as I seek to mentor others by being a compelling African storyteller.”
Examples of Luka’s work with the Laikipian are shown below. For updates, follow the Laikipian on Twitter (@TheLaikipian) and on Facebook (The Laikipian).
Alyshah Aziz graduated Cum Laude with a major in Politics & International Affairs and a minor in Middle East & South Asian Studies. Alyshah served as an Alternative Transportation Intern for six consecutive semesters. She is working as a Business Analyst within Deloitte’s Federal Human Capital Consulting division.
Alyshah’s reflection on the internship: My internship with the Office of Sustainability helped me strengthen my skills in research, writing, marketing, and creativity. My time in the office and my friendships with Dedee, Hannah, Annabel, initiative co-sponsors, and interns are invaluable to me. My biggest takeaway that I will always carry with me is to think critically of what I read, hear, and see. The weekly intern meetings taught me to listen to what I hear and/or see and then investigate. My internship has lead me to view the world and all the activities of humankind from a holistic perspective.
Over 200 WFU graduates made an enduring commitment to sustainability by signing the Green Graduation pledge, an opportunity that over 100 other colleges and universities offer their graduates. All signatories received a reusable travel mug to reinforce sustainable habits. The mugs are printed with Wake Forest’s Green Graduation pledge: I pledge to take into account the social and environmental consequences of any future endeavors and to work to improve the sustainability of the communities in which I work, live and play.
This is the sixth year that Wake Forest graduates have participated in the nationwide pledge movement.
Graduates who missed the initial opportunity to commit can come by the Office of Sustainability during our Homecoming reception in the fall to sign the pledge and/or grab a reusable mug.