Sustainability programs

Algonquin College and Conestoga College, both in Ontario, Canada: collaborated to create a new certificate program designed to help educators incorporate environmental and sustainability education as well as corporate social responsibility components within their curricula.

BC Working Group on Sustainability Education, Vancouver, British Columbia (BC), Canada: started in 2006; connects organizations, educational institutions, government and others for the purpose of furthering sustainability education across the province.

The City University of New York’s School of Professional Studies offers an Online Master’s Degree in Data Analytics that includes a sustainability track

Cloud Institute: prepares K-12 school systems and their communities to educate for a sustainable future by inspiring educators and engaging students through meaningful content and learner-centered instruction. For the past 3 years they have had teams in their NJ Learns, partnering with Sustainable Jersey and funded by the Dodge Foundation. Jamie Cloud is the founder, director and a dynamo for sustainability.

Conestoga College in Ontario offers a part time Sustainability Education program focusing on the development of skills, knowledge and values that promotes behavior in support of a sustainable planet.

goBEYOND* campus sustainability network, based in Vancouver, BC: a student-driven group that engages students, faculty, staff and community partners at post-secondary institutions, with the goal to move schools beyond climate-neutral. Supported by community partners, government groups at various levels, and others.
*Note that this program ended in Summer 2012

Higher Education Academy, UK – Includes the Education for Sustainable Development Project which helps institutions and subject communities develop curricula and pedagogy that will give students the skills and knowledge to live and work sustainably and the Green Academy designed to address how best to embed sustainable development into the overall student experience

Kwantlen Polytechnic University in Richmond, BC, is home to the Institute for Sustainable Horticulture and the Richmond Farm School, both exemplary in their approach to long term sustainable practices in plant growth and management. The Centre for Academic Growth worked with Horticulture faculty to ensure that teaching strategies and the learning environment were supportive of an educational environment that was aligned with these practices, including supporting research on student engagement and offering the opportunity to become a reflective teacher through the Instructional Skills Workshop.

Next Up, based in BC, and recently expanded to Alberta and Saskatchewan: a leadership program for young Canadians committed to social and environmental justice, with a broad and indirect connection to sustainability education.

Pacific Spirit Project, British Columbia Institute of Technology, Vancouver, BC: a version of the Piedmont/Ponderosa workshop, has run annually since 2009; initially offered for faculty members within the School of Construction and Environment, and now open to all disciplines at BCIT.

Piedmont Project, Emory University in Atlanta, Georgia: launched in 2001 by Peggy Barlett and Arri Eisen. Modeled after the Ponderosa Project, with NAU leaders coming to Emory to facilitate the opening workshop, and subsequently led by rotating teams of Emory faculty facilitators. Aiming to infuse sustainability and environmental issues across the curriculum, it later expanded to include a program for graduate students.

Plymouth University in the UK offers programs with sustainability elements from a range of disciplines. The Centre for Sustainable Futures provides curriculum and pedagogic support and coordinates cross-institutional research related to education for sustainable development (ESD). The website includes a newsletter for sustainable education developers

Ponderosa Project, Northern Arizona University (NAU): first offered in 1994, designed by Geoff Chase and Paul Rowland. The main goal of this interdisciplinary faculty group effort is to incorporate environmental sustainability issues into university courses with the ultimate goal of providing future citizens the education and skills necessary to achieve sustainable communities and societies.

RETScreen Training Institute offers intensive instruction on how to properly assess the viability and performance of clean energy projects using the RETScreen software. The institute is in collaboration with the Faculty of Environmental Studies at Toronto’s York University.

Royal Roads University, Victoria, BC, MA in Environmental Education Communication: has 1-year and 2-year certificate and diploma options as well as the degree, an interdisciplinary program that focuses on developing competency and skill in educators and communicators who present to environmental information to audiences.

Ryerson University in Toronto, Ontario, offers a Certificate in Sustainability Management. This program consists of six courses: three required and three electives. The courses teach you how to understand sustainability issues, how to examine sustainability issues, and how to integrate sustainability’s “Triple-Bottom-Line” or “People-Planet-Profit” approach.

Schooling for Sustainability Leadership, The Center for Ecoliteracy

Sierra Club BC offers two school programs, one for elementary and middle schools and the other for secondary schools. The elementary and middle school program investigates four different areas of interest for both teachers and students: rainforest ecology, climate change, stewardship and wild forest product harvesting. The secondary school programs are designed to empower the youth to envision sustainable communities, assess their school’s sustainability, along with designing and implementing school projects.

STEPS Centre Summer School – Through the Institute for Development Studies at the University of Sussex in Brighton, UK, this program described as “pathways to sustainability that brings together groups of people who are exploring and developing ideas on pathways to sustainability. Through a mix of lectures, walks, discussions and public events, participants will challenge the STEPS team and each other on questions of science, society and development.”

SustainableSFU, run by student, is a non-profit organization creating a sustainability future through advocacy and capacity-building within the Simon Fraser University community. Three campuses ­– Burnaby, Vancouver and Surrey, British Columbia are involved

Sustainability Education Across the Province (SEAP), based in Vancouver, BC: Began in 2010, by two alumni of the SEI as a follow-up to their project. Hosted by a different post-secondary institution each year, this collaborative initiative that envisions sustainability being integrated throughout post-secondary curriculum, focuses on faculty members.

Sustainability Education Framework, established by the British Columbia Ministry of Education in 2008, with the vision to encourage the K-12 education system to show leadership in adopting and promoting environmentally sustainable practices and learning opportunities that support healthy, natural, social and economic environments for current and future generations.

Sustainability Education Intensive (SEI), University of British Columbia (UBC), Vancouver, BC: Offered in 2009 and 2010. A 2.5 day workshop provides tools, resources and time for participants, including faculty, staff, graduate and undergraduate students from any discipline or unit, to develop a project plan to integrate or enhance sustainability in their course, program or initiative. Studio sessions (and financial support for UBC colleagues) over 7 months following the workshop further supported participants, culminating in a showcase event to celebrate and share the results.

Thompson Rivers University, Kamloops, BC has started a Leadership in Environmental Sustainability Certificate to allow students to earn formal recognition for their knowledge, skills, values and attitudes that contribute to environmental sustainability competency, from projects to artwork to architectural design to relevant classroom assignments

University of Bath, UK: Master’s Program, Responsibility and Business Practice in the School of Management, with action research based practice of leadership for sustainability as the focus

University of Guelph, Ontario, Canada: has identified sustainability as a curriculum direction, detailed in a 2010 Presidential Task Force Report.

University of Newcastle, Australia has a sustainability plan and conducts environmental research

Western Washington University: has an Office of Sustainability dedicated to furthering Western’s strategic goal of campus sustainability.

Williams Lake, BC: This town runs on volunteerism and citizen initiative, which are alive and well here. For example, The Potato House is a new society intending to convert an old home and garden into a centre for sustainability. The City did some very pro-active planning through a process called “Imagine our Future”. The Scout Island Nature Centre is also a hot-bed of teaching and learning about nature and reducing ecological footprints.

WKU (formerly Western Kentucky University) held a faculty development retreat on sustainability across the curriculum, with an incentive to attendees to develop or revise courses. Over 15 courses were developed in disciplines from Nursing to Marketing to Management to Kinesiology, Recreation and Sports to English to Sociology. There is also a new Masters degree in Social Responsibility and Sustainable Communities and a new Sustainability Concentration in the MBA program. In summer, 2011, WKU sponsored the first regional Education for Sustainability Summer Institute, for p-20 teachers, faculty, and administrators.

York University offers graduate diplomas in Environmental/Sustainability Education and are the only ones of their kind in Ontario.


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