Together, Building Sustainable Campuses
The inaugural American Association of Community Colleges’ Sustainability Education and Economic Development (SEED) Center Green Genome Awards, honored exemplary community colleges nationwide that have taken a strategic leadership role in sustainability and green economic and workforce development. The following colleges were recognized for their achievements.
Each winner received $8,000 in cash, plus a set of state-of-the-art Bahco brand Snap-on tools and horticulture equipment. Read below to see how the winning colleges are using their winnings. Thank you to Snap-on for their support of community college clean technology programs!
As the winner of the 2012 Green Genome Award in the category of Governance, Butte College (CA) used the award money to support students in attending the annual Bioneers Conference, a knowledge forum where social and scientific innovators discuss and share solutions that address environmental and social issues. At the conference, students were exposed to a variety of sustainability fields and internship and job opportunities in areas such as green building, sustainability program management, and sustainable architecture.
The Bahco brand Snap-on tools are being used in the college’s horticulture department’s nursery, a retail and wholesale training grounds for students preparing for careers in floriculture, nursery production, and landscaping. Vice president of the Horticulture Club, Nathan Roberts, revealed that the tools came at a “perfect time,” as equipment budgets have been reduced and new tools were needed to keep the program relevant to students and area employers.
CENTRAL CAROLINA COMMUNITY COLLEGE
As the winner of the 2012 Green Genome Award in the category of Program Design and Delivery, Central Carolina Community College’s (NC) holistic approach to renewable energy, energy efficiency, resource conservation, and entrepreneurship has been the hallmark of its green education and training programs. The college used the award to provide scholarships for its sustainable agriculture, sustainable technologies, and biofuels students to attend regional and national industry conferences. With college travel budgets cut, these funds were critical for students to maintain important professional networks for career and internship opportunities.
The Bahco brand Snap-on tools are being used by students on the college’s organic farm to plant, cultivate and harvest a variety of produce. The college has the country’s first sustainable agriculture associate’s degree program where students maintain and operate a profitable five-acre organically managed farm.
As the winner of the 2012 Green Genome Award in the category of Community Engagement, Delta College (MI) plays an integral role in the social, environmental, and economic health of Michigan’s Great Lakes Bay region. Funds from this award are being used to support staffing and equipment for their new wind turbine technology program.
The Bahco brand Snap-on tools are being used in the construction of an alternative energy trailer, which will serve as an onsite classroom and mobile demonstration site. The trailer features residential solar, wind, and other alternative energy systems and Energy Star appliances. The tools will also enable the development and launch of new continuing education and lifelong learning courses in composting and organic gardening, something the school has been planning for some time.
HILLSBOROUGH COMMUNITY COLLEGE
As winner of the 2012 Green Genome Award in the overall category, Hillsborough Community College (FL) has a record of environmental stewardship that dates back to the earliest days of the college’s existence. The Bahco brand Snap-on tools are being used in the redesign of garden layouts and plantings at the college’s Plant City campus. Students are using these tools to demonstrate the Florida-friendly landscape design and the sustainable option in landscaping and gardening.
Additionally, the tools serve to extend the classroom as students use them on a “loan basis” to complete the necessary cultural practices associated with creating landscaping projects. HCC Sustainability’s newsletter Nature continues to publish stories of these efforts while recognizing the gift given by Bahco and Snap-on. Funds from this award are being used to support the creation of student-led initiatives that align with the goals of the college’s Sustainability Council and Climate Action Plan. Projects include a waste reduction effort and a tree inventory.
WEST VIRGINIA UNIVERSITY AT PARKERSBURG
As winner of the 2012 Green Genome Award in the category of Strategic Partnerships, West Virginia University at Parkersburg (WVU-P) has worked over many years to serve some of the most economically distressed counties in the nation. The college is using the Bahco brand Snap-on tools in its solar energy program for training on the installation of solar panels and in mounting solar hardware.
The tools are also being used by the college’s energy assessment and management students, many of whom have been hired by the county government to perform residential energy audits in the surrounding community. Funds from this award will support both of these training programs through the procurement of additional supplies and equipment.