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Get Involved - Staff and Faculty - Sustainability at Wake Forest

Sustainability at Wake Forest

Get Involved – Staff and Faculty

Get Involved – Staff and Faculty

Sustainability in the Workplace

Looking for a way to incorporate sustainability into your workplace?  Get your department or office involved by joining the Green Team Network.  The Green Team Network is a campus-wide initiative that empowers faculty and staff to integrate sustainability through education, support, and collaboration.


Faculty members seeking academic resources can visit the Academics page for information about the Center for Energy, Environment, and Sustainability and the annual Sustainability across the Curriculum workshop.

Practical Solutions

Looking for immediate solutions? Check out these how-to guides:

Can’t find the answer to your question? Check our list of Frequently Asked Questions or email sustainability@wfu.edu.



Infusing Sustainability across the Curriculum

May 20th, 2018

During the workshop, participants discussed sustainability literature, developed learning objectives for their students, and shared perspectives and stories from their own fields of study. For the semesters following the workshop, each faculty participant submits a syllabus for a course in which sustainability-related outcomes are integrated. These courses are either classes the faculty have been teaching and plan to teach again, or are completely new courses being developed.

Members of this year’s cohort represented various disciplines including: politics and international affairs, entrepreneurship, art, biology, physics, psychology, business, French, and journalism.

“I enjoyed the Magnolias Curriculum Project and I believe what I have learned will greatly improve not only the course I focused on for revision, but all of the courses I teach,” reported one of this year’s Magnolias participants.

Ron Von Burg, assistant professor in the Department of Communications, and Luke Johnston, associate professor in the Department for the Study of Religions, both Magnolias Project alumni, facilitated this year’s workshop along with Dedee DeLongpré Johnston, Wake Forest’s Chief Sustainability Officer. Participants also had the opportunity to hear from a handful of Magnolias alumni on engaged learning for sustainability and integration of sustainability at the assignment level.

This workshop results in an increased number of courses that support a wide variety of sustainability-related learning objectives, creating opportunities for learning across the arc of a liberal arts education. The 2018 cohort brings the number of Magnolias Curriculum Project participants up to 76.


Now Accepting Applications for the 2018 Magnolias Curriculum Project

April 2nd, 2018

This innovative approach to curricular change, modeled on the nationally renowned Piedmont Project (Emory University), provides faculty with an intellectually stimulating and collegial experience to pool their expertise.

The workshop explores how we can meaningfully integrate sustainability—broadly defined—into our classrooms. Although we start by taking a close look at Wake Forest University and the larger Piedmont region, we invite participants to engage in local to global comparisons.

The Magnolia Project kicks off with a two-day workshop in May that offers opportunities to extend research and teaching horizons across disciplines and create new networks with fellow colleagues.  Following the workshop, faculty participants prepare discipline-specific course materials on their own over the summer. They reconvene in early August to discuss their insights and experiences. Participants receive a stipend of $500 upon completion of a new or revised syllabus.

Project participants agree to:

  1. Read some materials prior to the workshop
  2. Participate in the full 2-day workshop on May 16-17, 2018
  3. Commit time during the summer to prepare or revise a syllabus and submit it in August
  4. Report back to the group in August.

Sustainability Champions Recognized at Fifth Campus Sustainability Awards

March 28th, 2018

Dr. Jill Crainshaw was awarded the Teaching, Research, and Engagement Award for her course, “Sacraments and Ordinances: History, Theology and Practice.” Her course takes a place-based educational approach to exploring liturgical and sacramental rituals like baptism and the breaking of bread. Through this course, Jill trains ministers and theologians to attend to the local needs of communities they will soon be leading. Additionally, Jill weaves sustainability concepts into her course by taking students to meet local bakers, farmers, and vintners and to explore local waterways, where they can connect place and contemplate all aspects of environmental stewardship.

This year’s Resource Conservation Award went to Josh Suzuki, Assistant Director of Operations for the Lawrence Joel Veterans Memorial Coliseum. As the Green Team for Wake Forest Athletics, Josh implemented a composting program for BB&T Field and LJVM Coliseum. As a result of this program, and through a pre-existing partnership with Gallins Family Farm, 3.2 tons of food waste from the Coliseum and Deacon Tower were diverted from landfills in 2017.

The Service and Social Action Award went to Assistant Professor of Education Dr. Alan Brown, Demon Deacon defensive end Wendell Dunn, and Bailey Allman, a Wake Forest alumna and teacher at Paisley Middle School. This award honors the inspired collaboration between these three leaders who initiated a sports literacy program at Paisley. As a result of the program, many students who were once struggling academically have found success in the classroom and can now imagine their roles as future leaders in their communities.

This year, the Office of Sustainability recognized three individuals who merged their talents to launch one very “Bright Idea.” John Shenette, AVP for Facilities and Campus Services, Dr. Jed Macosko, Associate Professor of Physics, and GIS specialist Dr. Becky Dickson are currently working together to make the campus a living laboratory for sustainability studies and practice. Their project was sparked by Physics Chair Dany Shapiro, who requested that the university administration find ways to reduce light pollution on campus. Always looking to engage students, John Shenette reached out to the Office of Sustainability to explore possibilities for a classroom-based design solution. Before long, students in this semester’s “Physics and Chemistry of the Environment” course were busy working on Operation Night Light, a project measuring light pollution with tools provided by Facilities & Campus Services. Becky Dickson, whose GIS students are mapping campus energy data this semester, will map light pollution in the fall as the group pursues new lighting standards.

Anna Marie Carr received this year’s Leadership Award for her unprecedented efforts to reduce waste across HR Office operations and events. Examples of her efforts include the HR Staff Rewards & Recognition luncheon, where she worked to create a nearly waste-free event attended by over 250 people. Anna Marie worked with Aramark to ensure the use of compostable cups, plates, and serviceware, collaborated with the Office of Sustainability and Facilities to secure compost bins and Compost Crew volunteers, and purchased reusable centerpieces. For the same event, Anna Marie worked with JL Bolt to craft awards from old Reynolds Gym flooring. This innovative event-planning model has since been deployed across HR events, including Workday Pop-Up labs, Leadership Summits, and Talent Forums.

Lastly, Champion of Change Awards, which recognize individuals who have made an impact on campus sustainability, were presented to Hilary Floyd, Michelle Ford, Tim Vandermeersch, Jordan Mullens, and T Taylor.

As the Green Team captain for the School of Divinity, Hilary Floyd supports colleagues and graduate students in implementing sustainability practices. She has helped the school switch to 100% post-consumer recycled content copy paper and transition to online applications. In addition, “Commonplace,” the Divinity student sustainability-focused organization that Hilary supports, collects food waste for composting at the school’s twice-weekly lunches.

As the new Green Team captain for Biology, Michelle Ford hit the ground running. In her short time in this position, she has fully committed to waste reduction, incorporating food waste collection at two departmental events and leading the department in making the switch to 100% post-consumer recycled content copy paper. She inspires others by applying a sustainability lens to all of her decisions.

Tim Vandermeersch is the Resident District Manager for Aramark at Wake Forest and a member of the Deacon Dining Green Team. Tim’s spirit of innovation and willingness to explore new ideas has led to dramatic increases in both sustainability and customer satisfaction in dining. In residential dining, over 30% of the food Aramark procures is now from sustainable production sources.

Jordan Mullens has been a true leader as the Greeks Go Green representative for Delta Zeta sorority. She has implemented an organic waste collection program for composting on the DZ halls to divert waste from landfills and raise awareness of the issue of food waste. This past fall, along with her sorority’s Vice President of Philanthropy, Kimi Morris, Jordan helped organize Pink Goes Green, a series of events and activities on campus aimed at increasing recycling rates among peers. Activities included campus outreach and a recycling competition at a football tailgate.

T Taylor fully embodies her leadership role as the Graduate Hall Director for Kitchin Residence Hall. This past fall, a pilot campaign on energy and water conservation was launched in Kitchin Hall. T made the program a priority among her staff and engaged her RAs in the planning process, empowering them to assert their own leadership and be an integral part of the solution.

Congratulations to all of our Champions of Change for their work to make Wake Forest an even more sustainable place to live, work, study, and play.

The 2018 Champions of Change. Photo by Sean Yan.


Previous Champion of Change Winners Include:

Academics and Engagement

  • 2014: Lynn Book, Angela Kocze, and Wanda Balzano for Women, Entrepreneurship, and Sustainability
  • 2015: Ron Von Burg for Humanity and Nature and Coasts and Climate Change (Belize)
  • 2016: Sarah Mason for FYS “Counting on Sustainable Energy: Does it Add Up?”; Vanessa Zboreak Sustainability Law and Policy courses
  • 2017: Amanda Lanier for Environmental Education at Reynolda Gardens and Preston Stockton Reynolda Meadow Project
  • 2018: Jill Crainshaw

Resource Conservation

  • 2014: Resident Life & Housing for Radical Energy, Water, and Waste Reduction and Financial Services Paperless Processes
  • 2015: Office of the Registrar for the Paperless PIN project; Surplus Property Program for Radical Waste Diversion
  • 2016: Office of Research & Sponsored Programs for Paperless Processes; Jessica Wallace and John Wise for Zero Landfill Program at North Dining
  • 2017: Facilities & Campus Services and Residence Life & Housing for Upper Quad Residence Hall Renovations
  • 2018: Josh Suzuki

Service and Social Action

  • 2014: Shelley Sizemore for Food Justice
  • 2015: Steve Boyd for Religion and Public Engagement
  • 2016: Justin Catanoso for Climate Change Reporting; Marianne Magjuka for NC Power Dialog
  • 2017: Dr. Angela King for Enno Farms – Model of Sustainable Practices
  • 2018: Alan Brown, Wendell Dunn, Bailey Allman

Bright Idea

  • 2014: Abby McNeal for the UgMo Wireless Soil Sensor System at Spry Soccer Field
  • 2015: JL Bolt and Frank Shelton for Repurposing Discarded Wood (“Saw-stainability”)
  • 2016: Lee Collette and Eric Stottlemyer for Contemplative Approaches to Global Sustainability (Alaska); David Link for Honeybee Program at WFU Campus Garden
  • 2017: Lesli Tuttle for Electronic Tax Form Adoption; Steven Fisenne for Chemical Inventory System; Customer and Custodial Services for Dry Floor Stripping
  • 2018: John Shenette, Jed Macosko, and Becky Dickson


  • 2016: Alyshah Aziz  for Re-Cycle Bike Sharing; Dan Rossow  for Sustainable Event Planning at Reynolda House
  • 2017: Sebastian Irby for Interdisciplinary Major in Sustainability Studies
  • 2018: Anna Marie Carr

Champions of Change

  • 2014: Green Team Captains Peter Romanov (ZSR Library), Darlene Starnes (Office of Multicultural Affairs), and Carol Lavis (Department of Theater and Dance) for innovation in leadership
  • 2015: Green Team Captains Kate Ruley (Aramark) and Barbara Macri (Human Resources)
  • 2016: John Noble (Waste reduction at The Bridge), Tanisha Ramachandran (Social justice – Department for the Study of Religions), Natascha Romeo and Sharon Woodard (Intersections of health and sustainability in HES courses), Preston Stockton and John Kiger (Mentorship in the Campus Garden), Janine Tillett (All-star volunteer in the Campus Garden), and Gail Bretan (Inclusive programming – Tu B’Shevat)
  • 2017: Sarah Fahmy (Student-Athlete Sustainability Network)


Green Team Captain Spotlight: Hilary Floyd and Michelle Ford

March 26th, 2018

Is your office or department needing a Green Team representative? Email sustainability@wfu.edu to start the conversation.


Hilary Floyd, Wake Forest School of Divinity   

Q: What kinds of work are you involved with at Wake Forest?

A:  My job is to provide individual academic coaching for Divinity students, offer academic skills workshops, and to teach courses in research and writing. I also coordinate a leadership program for early career pastors as a part of our continuing education efforts. Additionally, I provide administrative and logistical support for our Food, Health, and Ecological Well-Being program.

Q:  What drew you to joining the Green Team and becoming a captain?

A:   Because of my work for the Food, Health, and Ecological Well-Being Program, joining the Green Team seemed like a natural fit. Much of what we hope to do through the FHEW program is to integrate an ecological and sustainable consciousness throughout the courses, activities, and community life of the Divinity School, so it is useful and relevant that we connect that work with the efforts of the Office of Sustainability and the Green Team.

Q:  What does being on the Green Team mean to you?

A:  I enjoy being on the Green Team because it gives me the opportunity to connect with others across campus and to learn from them about ways to effect positive change. The Green Team focuses on empowering each of us to do what we can where we are, and it has given me knowledge, tools, and encouragement to take small but meaningful steps in the Divinity School.

Q:  What kinds of initiatives have you implemented through your Green Team work?

A:  This past year, I met with several of our students who are interested in the intersection of faith, food, and ecology to discuss reviving our composting efforts. The students now set up a compost bin at our community lunches every Tuesday and Thursday, and they take the compost to the Campus Garden. I also have worked with the other Divinity staff members who order paper for faculty, staff, and student printers, and I encouraged them to consider ordering 100% recycled paper. Previously, they had been ordering paper with no recycled content, but after I shared with them what we had learned about recycled paper in one of our Green Team meetings, they were happy to make the change.



Michelle Ford, Wake Forest Biology Department

Q: What kinds of work are you involved with at Wake Forest?

A:  I am an administrative assistant in the Biology Department, so I do a lot of different things to assist the biology faculty—from making copies to defrosting lab freezers, I tackle it all!

Q:  What drew you to joining the Green Team and becoming a captain?

A:  I inherited the responsibility from my predecessor, but it was actually a great fit for me because I held a similar position on a similar type of team at my previous employer! I enjoy trying to find ways to conduct department business in a manner that is practical, functional, and also earth-friendly.

Q:  What does being on the Green Team mean to you?

A:  To me, being on the Green Team means that while I am doing my normal work, I also try to view everything through a sustainability lens. I always ask myself, “Is there a way that we could do this and achieve the same goal, but have less of an environmental impact?” Maybe that involves printing less, using recycled paper, or buying supplies manufactured with recycled materials, but there is usually some way to improve our process to make it a little bit more “green.”

Q:  What kinds of initiatives have you implemented through your Green Team work?

A:  In the Biology department, we have switched to 100% recycled paper for our printing needs, and have also implemented the use of compost bins at our departmental events. We are also planning to start a summer energy-saving initiative in which we raise the temperature of our ultra-low temperature freezers from -80° C to -70°C.

Working for the World We Want: 2018 Earth Week at Wake Forest

March 11th, 2018

Monday, March 12 – Friday, March 16

Create a banner displaying your love of trees in honor of Wake Forest’s Earth Week and our Tree Campus USA designation. Student organizations, offices, and departments are encouraged to register together. All materials will be provided and banners will be displayed on the Upper Quad.

Sunday, March 18
Spring Equinox Celebration
4:00 – 6:00 pm | Campus GardenThe Spring Equinox Celebration is a festive gathering of people, plants, and animals hosted by the Wake Forest University Campus Garden. As a community, we will welcome the start of spring by spreading wildflower seeds. Participants will get a full-sensory experience of a garden in springtime through samples of garden-fresh food and interactions with llamas, sheep, and chickens.

Monday, March 19
Plant-Forward Cooking Class

3:00 – 4:00 pm | Reynolds Gym Seminar Room A330

Thrive and the Office of Sustainability are joining forces for a unique cooking class focused on plant-powered eating. This class is open to all students, staff, and faculty. Register here.

Tuesday, March 20
Fifth Annual Champions of Change for Campus Sustainability
12:00-1:00 pm | Reynolda Hall Green Room

Join us in recognizing the work of those who have enhanced the culture of sustainability at Wake Forest at the fifth annual Champions of Change: Campus Sustainability Awards ceremony on March 20. Light snacks will be served. RSVP here.

Tuesday, March 20
Amplify: Women’s Leadership Expo

5:00 – 7:00 pm

Amplify: Women’s Leadership Expo will provide a range of offerings that explore the challenges and opportunities for women leaders. Participants will deepen their self-awareness, confidence, exposure to different leadership styles, and sense of support for women in leadership. This event is co-sponsored by the Women’s Center and Office of Student Engagement.

Wednesday, March 21
Majora Carter Keynote
7:00 – 8:30 pm | Brendle Recital Hall

Majora Carter is a leading urban revitalization strategy consultant, real estate developer, and Peabody Award winning-broadcaster. She is responsible for the creation and implementation of numerous green infrastructure projects, policies, and job training and placement systems. This event is co-sponsored by the Office of Sustainability, Rethinking Community, the Sustainability Graduate Programs, the Center for Energy, Environment, and Sustainability, the Department of Engineering, and the Intercultural Center. RSVP here.

Thursday, March 22
Bike Tune-Ups 
3:00 – 6:00 pm | North Sutton Lawn

We’ve teamed up with Outdoor Pursuits to host a free bicycle tune-up station on campus. Stop by the North Sutton lawn, across the street from Poteat field, where mechanics from Ken’s Bike Shop will pump up your tires, make minor fixes and adjustments, and offer advice on larger repairs that cannot be done on the spot.

Thursday, March 22
Environmental Education Abroad
5:00 – 6:00 pm | ZSR, Room 204

This panel of students will share their experiences of pursuing environmental education abroad. Student panelists include Blake Wynveen (Panama), Mackenzie Howe (Australia), and Yuning Feng (Costa Rica). The panel will be followed by an ENV Program reception. Hosted by the ENV Program and Global Programs and Studies.

Friday, March 23
Campus Beautification Day – Arbor Day Observance 
3:00 – 5:30 pm | The Barn

Celebrate Arbor Day and Tu B’Shevat, the Jewish New Year for Trees, at the Barn and the surrounding cross country trails. The event will feature a tree planting ceremony, a cleanup of the woods around the trails, and a cookout with grass-fed beef and veggie burgers. Register to participate and receive a Cloud Organic Earth Week t-shirt. This event is co-sponsored by the Office of Sustainability, WFU Athletics, Landscape Services, and Campus Recreation.

Saturday, March 24
Forsyth Creek Week Clean-ups 
9:00 am – 12:00 pm

This is your chance to do something proactive to help our waterways! As part of Creek Week, clean-ups will be held from 9:00 am to 12:00 pm on Saturday, March 24, in both Clemmons and Lewisville. Further information about Creek Week and ways to get involved can be found here.

Monday, March 18 – Saturday, March 24

Yellow tree tags around campus offer the calculated value of ecosystem services that the trees provide, the positive benefits of trees in our landscape, and sentiments from authors about the inestimable value of our beloved trees. Share your favorite tree tags by tagging @SustainableWFU on social media.


Friday, April 6
Environmental Law Symposium
8:45 am – 4:30 pm | Worrell, Room 1312

The Wake Forest Law Review’s Spring Symposium will bring together environmental and human rights experts from around the world to discuss the interplay between human rights and natural resources. The symposium will address topics ranging from the exploitation of resources and the effects on marginalized and underrepresented groups in the US to the inhumane treatment of global environmental defenders.

Sustainability across the Curriculum

June 9th, 2017

For the semester following the workshop, faculty participants submit a syllabus for a course in which sustainability-related outcomes are integrated. These courses are either classes the faculty have been teaching and plan to teach again, or are completely new courses they are developing.

Members of this year’s cohort represented a breadth of disciplinary and campus homes: music, education, the ZSR Library, romance languages, chemistry, English, anthropology, communication, and the Reynolda Gardens public education program.

Ron Von Burg, assistant professor in the Department of Communications, and Luke Johnston, associate professor in the Department for the Study of Religions, both Magnolias Project alumni, facilitated this year’s workshop. Guest presenters, Yadkin Riverkeeper, Will Scott and Sylvia Oberle, Senior Fellow with the Pro Humanitate Institute, shared resources for designing course content to engage students in locally relevant issues.

One of this year’s participants reported that the experience “has helped me not only think about my classes, but also how to frame my own research to the public. I thoroughly enjoyed the conversations we had, and the presentations did a great job of making the ideas we were discussing applicable.”

Each year this workshop results in an increased number of courses that support a wide variety of sustainability-related learning objectives. This approach fits well into the context of a liberal arts education– students who are exposed to multiple disciplinary perspectives have a more complete understanding of the context in which many of the current socio-environmental trends are situated. The 2017 cohort brought the number of Magnolias Curriculum Project participants up to 66.

This year’s Magnolias Curriculum Project was hosted by the Center for Energy, Environment, and Sustainability and the Office of Sustainability.

Attend the March for Science in Raleigh

April 11th, 2017

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.

Additional information and the full itinerary for the Raleigh March for Science can be found at raleighmarchforscience.org. Email cohenbj@wfu.edu with any questions.

* Itinerary times are subject to change.

Nominate a Champion of Change

February 11th, 2017

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.
  • Leadership
    • 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.

Nominations are due by March 3, 2017. The fourth annual Champions of Change award ceremony will be held on March 22 at 4:00 p.m. RSVP here

Stottlemyer to head Environmental Program

August 15th, 2016

When asked what makes the Environmental Program at Wake Forest great, Stottlemyer says the strength of the program stems from the high level of engagement Wake Forest professors have with their students. As director, maintaining this high level of interactivity between professors and students is essential. Additionally, Stottlemyer aims to continue previous efforts to offer a broad range of interdisciplinary classes centered on the environment, create internship and scholarship opportunities, and incorporate experiential learning opportunities into the curriculum.

“We want to give them [students] opportunities to have a world-class environmental education, and we want to see them succeed,” Stottlemyer said.

Stottlemyer assumed the role of directorship on July 1, 2016.

Submit a Nomination – Campus Sustainability Awards

March 7th, 2016

Campus Sustainability Awards LogoNominations for the Campus Sustainability Awards are now open! Students, faculty and staff who have demonstrated or initiated successful sustainable practices on campus are eligible. Nominate yourself or someone else as a Champion of Change in one of the following categories:

  • Resource Conservation
  • Academics and Engagement
  • Service and Social Action
  • Bright Ideas

Nominations will be evaluated based on demonstrated ways the nominee has advanced the WFU campus sustainability goals, measurable impact among constituents and other criteria. Click here to learn more about the award categories, winning criteria and previous winners. To nominate yourself or someone else, complete the online nomination form by 5:00pm on Monday, March 28, 2016. Winners will be announced at the awards ceremony on April 22, 2016.