Student Life

Diagram for making an office sustainable

Student Life is on a mission to achieve the highest rating of sustainability across campus. Already, many of the organizations under its umbrella have gone Platinum as green champions at the University.

The University Activities Center (UAC) is the latest organization to achieve a Platinum level rating by the Sustainable Workplace Certification Program. Based at the Michigan Union, UAC is a student-run organization with 15 committees that run activities and events around campus.

The UAC office team went through the certification program’s necessary steps, which include an informal inventory of practices, identification of gaps, and taking action to implement best practices. A Planet Blue representative from the Office of Campus Sustainability (OCS) meets with office teams, reviews a checklist and answers questions. Then offices earn a rating for their efforts and new practices.

The UAC team made simple changes that are going a long way. Natural daylight is used as much as possible. They routinely disconnect equipment that is not in use, choose double-sided printing and get water from the community refill station on their floor. They brought in bins to recycle supplies and paper, as well as purchased used furniture from the University Property Disposition.

The University aims to substantially reduce greenhouse gas emissions and waste, as well as increase sustainable food purchasing by 2025.