Wake Forest University

Staff and Faculty take the lead with Green Team Network - Sustainability at Wake Forest

Sustainability at Wake Forest

Staff and Faculty take the lead with Green Team Network

The public launch of the Green Team Network this month will present university faculty and staff with the opportunity to lead their respective divisions, departments, and units in developing more sustainable behaviors. Through the program, volunteer captains will gain the tools needed to engage their peers, and to promote sustainable behaviors, in ways that are culturally appropriate to their departments. The Green Team Network is aligned with the Office of Sustainability’s mission in that it supports faculty and staff members in assuming leadership for sustainability.

The Green Team was developed as a pilot through the combined efforts of a group of ten staff members, who served as team captains for their offices or departments, and Office of Sustainability staff. Through meetings, on-line communication, and researching similar programs at other universities, the captains and interns worked to create a framework that provides guidance, but is adaptable to a variety of settings.

A key feature of the program is the development of and support for Green Team captains in each office or department across campus. Once a unit chooses to participate, leaders within the department designate one or more captains (depending on the size of the department) to lead their sustainability efforts. No previous experience is necessary to become a Green Team captain. Training sessions are provided through the Professional Development Center and quarterly orientation meetings are hosted by the Office of Sustainability to educate the captains and allow them to share emerging best practices with one another.

The Office of Sustainability provides support through the development of monthly campaign themes.  Each campaign theme will focus on one particular area of sustainable practices. Emerging topics of interest to the group include energy reduction, waste reduction, recycling, and purchasing strategies. Campaigns will provide dynamic resources that Green Team captains can apply in ways that they feel will most effectively support their departments.

Ultimately, the goal for the Green Team Network is to provide guidance and support in several areas of sustainability to enhance the efficiency and effectiveness of workplace settings on campus. Currently, the pilot team and the Office of Sustainability are developing a meaningful method of recognizing those departments that become active members. The group will also plan an annual award program to recognize the most creative and effective efforts across campus.

Contact the Office of Sustainability at sustainability@wfu.edu to schedule a presentation for your next department meeting or to learn more about the program and membership.

By Josh DeWitt and Katherine Sinacore, Green Team Interns