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What We Do

History

Golf cart with Gus the Eagle

Founded in August 2008, the center originated as an Office of Sustainability in the College of Science and Technology and transitioned into the Center for Sustainability in 2009.

In 2012, students proposed and voted to support a $10 Student Sustainability Fee with a 75% majority. The Board of Regents for the University System of Georgia approved the fee in April 2013 and starting in Fall 2013, Center for Sustainability has been funded primarily by the fees.

Lissa Leege, PhD, Professor of Biology, was the founding director of the Center and directed it from its inception in August 2008 until July 2020, when Center for Sustainability became part of the Office of Leadership and Community Engagement and became known as Sustainability Programs.

Sustainability Programs hosts a popular tri-annual Sustainability Seminar Series with internationally recognized sustainability experts, bringing in as many as 1,000 attendees to each event. The series attracts Georgia Southern students as well as sustainability enthusiasts from the region. Our Environmental Community Cinema series brings in 2-3 environmentally focused films each semester, often in partnership with the Library. Additionally, Sustainability Programs hosts No Impact Week each spring – an intensive week-long campus focus on sustainability with more than 50 events/exhibits and thousands of participants each year.

Students on bicycles.

Sustainability Programs also reaches out to the community with an annual GreenFest each October to provide education and sustainable solutions to the public. GreenFest attracts >1500 people and more than 40 vendors to the Bulloch County Courthouse lawn, and offers workshops for families and students alike.  Sustainability Programs partners with the Georgia Southern Museum to offer a traveling museum exhibit, Sustainable Solutions: Technology and Lifestyle Choice for a Greener World, available for a small fee for regional K-8 events and science nights. Additional outreach activities include an Afterschool Garden Program with the 5 Statesboro elementary schools, hosting a regular campus farmers market (in partnership with the University Wellness Program), providing sustainability presentations on campus and in the community (businesses, churches, schools, garden clubs, Rotary club, etc.), and many more. Annually the Sustainability Programs reaches thousands of students and community members with its events and activities.

Elementary students and After school garden program teacher standing around a garden bed filled with vegetables.

Sustainability Programs administers a grant program that supports sustainability advances on campus and has allocated more than $1,100,000 towards campus sustainability improvements since 2014.

Last updated: 10/28/2020