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Sustainable Schools and Colleges Track


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Find out what SMU, University of Texas at Arlington, Irving Independent School District and others are doing to “green” their campuses.

Session 1:

Session 1: Southern Methodist University: SMU Is Red, Blue and Green
Kim Cobb, co-chair of SMU Sustainability Committee, director of media marketing at college

photo of Kim CobbSMU is committed to environmentally conscious behavior through broad campus resource management programs, aggressive recycling, student initiatives and green building construction as well as degree programs, course offerings and research. SMU’s Sustainability Committee is a group of faculty, students and staff who sponsor activities and events on campus that encourage lifelong environmentally conscious behavior. We’ll take you on a tour of SMU’s green initiative — ranging from our popular Green Minute Video Contest and our student E-reps, to our growing list of LEED-certified buildings and renowned geothermal energy program. SMU’s colors are red and blue, but the campus is green at heart.

View the video from Session 1.

Session 2: Lady Bird Johnson Middle School, Irving ISD
Angie Gaylord, principal

photo of Angie GaylordLady Bird Johnson Middle School is a neighborhood middle school organized with innovative 21st century ideals. Our students use both Apple iPads and HP netbooks to participate in a hybrid project based learning experience. Our Reading and History teachers plan units together, and our Science and English teachers plan units together. Our projects are launched using real world problem-solving scenarios to help kids make better connections to the curriculum. Our students still follow the district curriculum and take similar district assessments, but the learning is from an inquiry-based approach. In addition to innovative teaching, our students work every day in a real living laboratory with museum exhibits. Students learn through practical, hands-on experiences about environmental stewardship, energy conservation and such topics as geothermal science, rainwater collection, solar panel usage and wind turbine efficiency. JMS presents unique learning opportunities for all students in the IISD district; the campus has been designed to host 60-70 visiting students daily. We welcome all visitors to our campus to see innovative teaching and the future of sustainable green building design.

View the video from Session 2.

Lunch Session: Q-Tips Teacher Certification
Dr. Steve Brown

View the video from the Lunch Session.

Session 3: University of Texas at Arlington
Meghna Tare, director of sustainability for UT Arlington

photo of Meghna TareColleges and universities throughout the U.S. are adopting sustainability as a way of life and doing business. Sustainability initiatives are influencing curriculum decisions, operating budgets, strategic planning and campus life. The University of Texas at Arlington is striving to become a leader in campus sustainability. The university is engaged in greening facility operations, promoting innovative research, supporting and encouraging student initiatives, implementing environmentally and sustainability focused curriculum and sponsoring public service initiatives. As centers of change, innovation and progress, universities and colleges are well-poised to take the lead on sustainability. By adopting good environmental practices, not only can campuses reduce their own environmental impact, but they also serve as role models for their larger communities.

Session 4: ABC‘s of Sustainability Education for Secondary Students
Lori De La Cruz

photo of Lori De La CruzThe Green Teens sustainability education project at Birdville High School provided many lessons on engaging students throughout a yearlong after-school program. The lessons learned there framed and influenced the IrvingYES project, which was implemented in Irving's four high schools, North Lake College and the University of Dallas. The project is now a lecture series at North Lake College that discusses sustainability issues as they relate to American history. Learn about the evolution from a printed curriculum to an electronic “textbook,” the topics and corresponding activities. Learn how social media was used to promote the “Each One, Teach One” approach to environmental education.

View the video from Session 4.