IU South Bend Earns First STARS Sustainability Rating
After two years of data gathering and intense work, IU South Bend has received a bronze certification for the Sustainability Tracking, Assessment & Rating System (STARS) from the Association for the Advancement of Sustainability in Higher Education (AASHE).
IU South Bend is the first IU regional campus to achieve a certification from AASHE.
“We’re so proud to have our sustainability programs and achievements honored with this certification. It speaks to the leadership of IUSB’s Center for a Sustainable Future,” said Chancellor Susan Elrod. “This recognition is a celebration of the work of so many students, staff and faculty across campus who are engaged in this important effort for our region.”
Krista Bailey, director of the Center, was happy with the results and knows where the campus can improve. “The campus is a few points short of a silver certification. If we do a few things differently, the campus will receive a silver.”
Two of Bailey’s students, Gabrielle Robinson and Tony Bush, launched the effort. Bush took the lead in gathering data, talking to colleagues from academics to facilities—over a two-year span.
AASHE was established in 2005 and is the leading association for the advancement of sustainability in higher education. It serves a full range of higher education faculty, administrators, staff and students who are change agents and drivers of sustainability innovation.
The self-survey examined academics, engagement, operations, planning and administration, and innovation and leadership. The operations category included buildings, grounds and purchasing. Sustainable factors were evaluated under each category.
Academics and research scored the highest marks, thanks to the Sustainability Studies program. The results are also a framework for the future. There are “many opportunities to guide our programming and investments moving forward. Investments in these areas can and do contribute to recruitment, retention, academic achievement, healthy communities, and costs savings,” Bailey said. “It is something to see and learn from.”
The report can be viewed at