A new semester always welcomes more students dedicated to learning about sustainability through LEED Lab courses in new places. In fall 2017, LEED Lab added two new countries to its ever-expanding list. The first course in Europe was held at Sapienza–Università di Roma in Italy, and the first course in Guatemala was held at Universidad Rafael Landívar. As of November, 25 different universities in nine different countries were offering the LEED Lab course.Learn more about starting a LEED Lab course at your university.
Sapienza–Università di Roma
The first LEED Lab course at Università di Roma consisted of 17 graduate-level and engineering students who immersed themselves in the LEED certification process by evaluating the performance of existing facilities on their campus. In their first semester, students chose to assess the feasibility of certifying Sapienza Flaminia 70 under the LEED v4 v4 Operations and Maintenance rating system. Throughout the semester, the students were responsible for facilitating the LEED v4 O+M process at the building, including preparing documentation for submission to GBCI, with the goal of certifying the building.
Sapienza Flaminia is located at Via Flaminia 70 in Rome, Italy. Designed by architect Luigi Racheli at the end of the 1800s, it hosted an ice-producing factory and was purchased in 1901 by the Peroni Brewery Company. In the 1950s it was bought by Sapienza Università di Roma and converted into a home for the school's architecture department. The building was later refurbished by architect Andrea Vidotto. The total gross area of the building is 3,500 square meters on four floors, plus an attic. It hosts classrooms, offices and a library, is located near the historical center of Rome and is well connected to public transportation.
According to Francesco Cattaneo, the instructor for the course, “[LEED Lab] is a hands-on course—a fantastic opportunity to involve the students in the real-world certification process. Being a LEED accredited professional, I believe that education is fundamental to increasing awareness on sustainability issues and providing new working opportunities for young people in the building sector.”
Universidad Rafael Landívar
The first LEED Lab course at Universidad Rafael Landívar involved 22 senior undergraduate students in architecture who initiated the certification process for a university building on campus. Edificio O is a three-story, 2,500-square-foot building built in 1994 that serves as the headquarters of the Vicerectory of Research. It also houses research institutes in economics, politics, social studies, architecture and design and three classrooms for postgraduate programs. Its main occupants are researchers and staff.
The course was such a success that, even after it was complete, many students volunteered to continue working on the project. David Hernandez, the course instructor, says the biggest success of the LEED Lab course at Rafael Landívar was that “my students now understand architectural projects in a more holistic way. They were able to strengthen their professional practice by understanding the responsibility of their decisions.”