Spring is a favorite time of year for me. It’s Cherry Blossom season in Washington, D.C., residents are coming out of hibernation, the city is buzzing with activities and visitors—and my colleagues in higher education and sustainability are gathering in Baltimore for the annual Smart and Sustainable Campuses Conference.
When: April 4–5, 2016
Where: Hyatt Regency Baltimore on the Inner Harbor, Baltimore, MD
This year’s conference theme, “Measuring Our Impact,” describes our approach to higher education at USGBC. We are focused on collecting the most important data about sustainability efforts within the built environment to measure progress, understand the current scale of impact and develop tactics for how we will realize greater impact.
At the conference, USGBC will come together with the Association for the Advancement of Sustainability in Higher Education (AASHE), National Wildlife Federation (NWF) and Second Nature to host the workshop Achieving the Vision: 20 Million Global Sustainability Citizens by 2025. This workshop serves as a follow-up to the announcement made at the AASHE 2015 conference about our collective support for a vision that by 2025, a minimum of 1 in 5 (or 20 million) graduates across all majors will be global sustainability citizens.
The first step, making the commitment, was easy. The difficult task is the execution. If you are heading to Baltimore, please join us on Tuesday, April 5 at 8:30 a.m., when we will roll up our sleeves and get to work devising the strategy for meeting this ambitious but attainable goal. Attendees will help create new and identify existing pathways to adapt and track teaching and learning for sustainability. They will also help create a multifaceted campaign to support the goal.
The conference will also be a great place to learn more about USGBC’s higher education initiatives and the work we are doing to transform existing campuses and prepare students for competitive 21st century careers in sustainability. LEED Lab is one example of an innovative course approach that we are taking in partnership with higher education institutions to equip students with career-ready skills and knowledge that can be quickly deployed post-graduation.