As community colleges redesign and retrofit campuses in greener ways, many forward-thinking institutions are using these projects as hands-on learning opportunities for students. These so-called “living laboratories” merge academics and campus facilities management to provide students with real-world skills and, for the institution, a path to meet its sustainability goals.
The SEED Center and the U.S. Green Building Council’s Center for Green Schools have released a guide that highlights eight essential elements to building effective living labs. The Campus as a Living Lab: Using the Built Environment to Revitalize College Education tackles some of the biggest challenges faculty face in these endeavors, from breaking down internal institutional silos to engaging industry in curriculum development.
The guide is designed for community college personnel who are interested in launching or advancing effective living laboratory models on their campuses. Faculty, sustainability officers, and facilities staff, in particular, will find the information, best practices, and links useful.