Before diving into 2023, OSI wanted to take a moment to reflect on some of the many Emory sustainability highlights of 2022. Some are small, some are large, but all are a result of our hardworking and passionate community of change-makers. We are so grateful to all who made the following possible:
- Beginning in January and throughout the Spring and Fall 2022 semesters, the Emory Farmers Market has been up and running on McDonough Field every Tuesday.
- In late February, The Career Center, the Emory Alumni Environmental Network, and OSI partnered to host Emory’s 14th Annual Green Networking program, which provided career advice and guidance to students through 3 career panels and a Green Professionals Directory of 70+ alumni and colleagues working in green careers.
- Beginning in March, our Educational Gardens workdays ran in both the Spring and Fall semester of 2022 in our eight campus plots, providing small-scale communal spaces to work and grow food together.
- Emory became an official member of the Post-Landfill Action Network (PLAN) in March, which is a network of student leaders cultivating a world beyond waste.
- OSI also participated in our second ever Emory Day of Giving campaign that was made possible by our amazing network of student, staff, faculty, and alumni sustainability champions. 46 gifts were given, totaling over $13,000!
- In April, Plastic Free Emory, The Hatchery, and OSI put on a plastic-free hackathon, The Plastathon, dedicated to innovating solutions to Emory’s single-use plastic problem.
- OSI celebrated Earth Day, Emory’s Sustainability Innovators, and Emory’s Sustainability Accomplishments in a virtual celebration on April 15th.
- In late April, Emory News Center posted 26 highlights of our work, including our transformative solar power agreement, and the Piedmont Project.
- OSI also supported multiple Emory Cares Day events, including a Farmers Market alumni meet-up, garden workdays, waste trivia, and impactful discussions surrounding food insecurity and food justice.
- During the May 2022 Commencement, many volunteers helped OSI with waste sorting and outreach to continue an Emory tradition of making the main ceremony a Zero Landfill Waste event.
- In late May we sent a loving farewell to Kelly O’Day Weisinger, who for over ten years shared her expertise and compassionate leadership, first as a Programs Coordinator, then Assistant Director, and then, in 2020, the Director of OSI.
- In June, OSI conducted our annual sustainability literacy survey, which helps us understand the Emory community’s knowledge and attitudes towards sustainability.
- In June, OSI also welcomed the first ever Fellows to the OSI team, who have been invaluable additions! Sofie diTommaso is our Climate Solutions Fellow, and Zoe Price and Lydia Stubbs are our Sustainability & Social Justice Fellows.
- In July, OSI put together Student Sustainability guides for undergraduate and graduate and professional students at the Atlanta campus and for students at the Oxford campus.
- As part of orientation week in August, OSI, in partnership with New Student Programs, hosted the Student Sustainability Showcase: an introduction to all things Emory sustainability for students. We created a sustainability guide for new students as well.
- The Association for the Advancement of Sustainability in Higher Education released their 2022 rankings in September. Emory is rated gold, and tied for #5 for our campus engagement and are #6 for food and dining. These numbers are out of hundreds of participating colleges and universities
- In September, OSI’s Fellows also updated engagement programs and certified new green labs and green offices for the 2022-2023 academic year, encouraging sustainable practices in these workspaces.
- In October, thanks to efforts from Emory Dining, the Emory Community Fridge opened. This community fridge is located on the first floor of the AMUC, is available to anyone on campus, and helps ensure excess food from Cox Hall and the Eagle Emporium is eaten instead of discarded.
- The 16th annual student-run Sustainable Food Fair was hosted in Asbury Circle and featured performances, music, raffle prizes, and food. Students learned about sustainable food practices, sampled food from a variety of community groups, and purchased local goods.
- October 13th, 2022 marked one year since the Emory Administration met with the Emory Climate Coalition and joined the Race to Zero commitment and Second Nature’s Climate Leadership Network. By this date, Emory met Second Nature requirements to publish the latest greenhouse gas emission inventory for fiscal year 2021 and launched the Emory Climate Action Task Force to guide climate action planning
- In October, Emory hosted Indigenous Language Path Input Sessions and a teach-in to help honor Muscogee language and knowledge as the indigenous language and knowledge of this land.
- In November, Ed Lee, Emory College’s Senior Director of Inclusivity, in partnership with OSI, held the first ever session of Community Conversations: Emory Talks Climate Action initiative. These sessions allow the Emory community to share climate action planning priorities and visions for Emory’s future.
- Also in November, Emory was ranked #4 on the Princeton Review’s list of Top 50 Green Colleges.
- Additionally, OSI also celebrated this year’s grantees and projects funded by our Incentives Funds, General Sustainability & Social Justice, Green Labs, and Green Offices.
- Throughout November, OSI continued to support civic engagement throughout multiple local and federal general and runoff elections in 2022.
- In December, Ed Lee and OSI held the second Community Conversation, this time at the Oxford campus.
- OSI supported student fall move out and created a guide for donating and properly disposing of unwanted items.
- OSI also updated the Sustainable Events checklist to integrate guidance from the Office of Accessibility Services.
Through it all, our small team – Ciannat Howett, Taylor Spicer, Akelia Hypolite, and Erik Edwards – has been bolstered and inspired by all of you but particularly by a few groups:
- Our post-graduate fellows – Sofie diTommaso, Zoe Price, and Lydia Stubbs
- Our student interns – Spring 2022: Justin Bright, Nick Chang, Megan Deyhle, Kendra Ding, Jordan Hasty, Aaron Klingensmith, Caroline McCormack, Zoe Price, and Bella Roeske; Summer 2022: Kamea Alleyne, Kendra Ding, Morgan Finch, Faith Lopez, Caitlin McConaghy, and Caroline McCormack; Fall 2022: Kamea Alleyne, Kendra Ding, Morgan Finch, Jordan Hasty, Faith Lopez, and Claire Todaro
- Our Faculty Fellows – Dr. Mindy Goldstein, Dr. Rebecca Philipsborn, Dr. Eri Saikawa
- The 100s of volunteer Zero Waste Ambassadors (ZWA) from Emory University, Oxford College, and Emory Healthcare who have been educating their peers on waste reduction and sorting.
- And so many other staff and faculty sustainability champion groups, such as the Sustainability Representatives and Healthcare Sustainability Council, and the many sustainability-related student groups who lead and engage their peers on actions to support human, ecosystems, and planetary health.
We are sure we missed some highlights and groups to thank, so do not hesitate to remind us! Our deepest and sincerest gratitude to you for your role in Emory’s sustainability initiatives and for your sustainability leadership in all aspects of your lives. We look forward to continuing the good work together in 2023.