Sustainable Community Development Initiative

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Mary Idema Pew Library Shoots For Platinum

Mary Idema Pew Library Shoots For Platinum

Mary Idema Pew Library will be First Platinum LEED Building on GVSU Campus By: Jessica Beswick SCDI Web-Editor &n... more


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Our mission is to provide Grand Valley administration, faculty, staff, students, and community stakeholders with the required skills and capabilities to become better stewards and responsible global citizens in the workforce, communities, and family life. This site will guide you to information and resources, helping you to become more involved with sustainability efforts at Grand Valley State University and around the world.









GV Recognized as Green School

August 28, 2014

After being named the 58th greenest college in the nation, Grand Valley State University continues to grow awareness of green living around campusRead More

Honarable Mention Winner 2014

August 27, 2014

The Mary Idema Pew Library is the Honarable Mention Winner 2014 Education Design Showcase. Click here to read more. 

Renovated Buildings Open for Fall Semester

August 22, 2014

Over the summer, construction was wrapped up on two main buildings on the Allendale Campus at Grand Valley State University. This fall, new and returning students will once again have access to Kleiner Commons and the James H. Zumberge Hall. Read more here.

Jobs and internship opportunities!

August 19, 2014

The WMEAC is looking for interns. Click here for more info. 

Aquatic Biology Graduate Student Wins Presentation Competition

August 07, 2014

Congratulations to AWRI graduate student Lindsey Schulte, who won first place in the student paper presentation competition at the national Aquatic Plant Management Society meeting in Savannah, Georgia. More here. 

Dr. Haris Alibasic on WGVU

July 23, 2014

Sustainable Community Voices, monthly speaking with guests on the topic of sustainability. Dr. Haris Alibasic from the City of Grand Rapids and Adjunct Professor at GVSU Professor speaks as a guest. More here

Jazzing Down our Carbon Footprint

July 16, 2014

Read more about how JazzFest is becoming eco-friendly in Grand Rapids. Click here.

Great Lakes director discusses 'water strategy'

July 14, 2014

The West Michigan Sustainable Business Forum will produce a luncheon on Monday that addresses regional and state water-quality initiatives.

The program will be held at the MSU Bioeconomy Institute in Holland from noon to 2 p.m. Read more here.

Holiday Inn Downtown Grand Rapids

July 9, 2014

On Saturday, July 12, 2014, from 9:00am to 12:00pm EST, the Holiday Inn in Downtown Grand Rapids will host its annual electronic waste recycling drive.  The materials brought in are hauled away by Comprenew Environmental, a Grand Rapids-based, non-profit organization committed to the sustainable disposal of electronic waste.  

New Green Tour Map

July 2, 2014

The creation of the Green Tour map was a collective effort that included support from staff members in the Sustainable Community Development Initiative, Institutional Marketing, Facilities Services and Facilities Planning. New features will be added as the Allendale Campus Grows. A Pew Grand Rapids Campus map is underway. Click here for the Digital Tour or find it in our menu. 


ArtPrize Seasonal Employment

June 30, 2014

ArtPrize is always on the lookout for creative, self-directed, clever individuals to join the ArtPrize® Team. If you think you fit the bill, they would love to hear from you. More info here

Place-Based Education Conference 2014

June 30, 2014

Don't miss the 4th annual GLSI Great Lakes PBE Conference, Michigan's Great Lakes basin-wide gathering about place-based education. Our three-day conference begins Thursday, November 6 with Pre-session Meetings, Field Trips/Workshops, and an Evening Reception. The General Sessions for the conference will be held Friday, November 7 and Saturday, November 8. Click here to register!

Local App Aims to Gather Data

June 23, 2014

Learn more about what GVSU is doing to replenish the honeybee population here

GVSU President Tom Haas

June 16, 2014

Tom Haas enters his ninth year as president of Grand Valley State University with a priority of formulating a new five-year vision. See more here.

Honeybee research takes flight at GVSU

June 16, 2014

Professors and students develop online network to share information. Read more here

ArtPrize Seasonal Employment

June 11, 2014

ArtPrize is always on the lookout for creative, self-directed, clever individuals to join the ArtPrize® Team. If you think you fit the bill, they would love to hear from you. More info here

West Michigan could become the nation's hottest job market this summer

June 11, 2014

According to the latest Manpower Employment Outlook Survey. Read more here.

Power Plant Powered by Sustainability

June 09, 2014

Work is about to get underway on a new power plant that eventually will supply power to the city of Holland, but city officials there are already in full sustainability mode. Read here.

The Beekeepers

June 06, 2014

Students, faculty work to save a vanishing species. Click here to read more. 

The Rapid looks down the road to Laker Line

June 06, 2014

With one bus rapid transit line almost complete, The Rapid is setting its sights on the Laker Line. Click here for more information. 

ArtPrize Internship Opportunity

June 06, 2014

The SCDI is looking for an intern to work at ArtPrize. Click here for more information on the job description. All resumes and cover letters can be sent to by June 16th.

Farmers Market

June 02, 2014

The SAP Farm Stand has moved to the Farmers Market! Every Wednesday(June - Sept) from 10:00 A.M. to 1:30 P.M. in parking lot G. Click here for more info. 

Gazelle Girl

May 28, 2014

Gazelle Sports has officially received Silver certification for the Gazelle Girl event from the Council for Responsible Sport! Click here for more information on the CSR.

SAP Farm Stand 

May 23, 2014

Don't miss the last Wednesday of the Farm Stand at the Transformational Link (between Zumberge and Au Sable), 10:00 a.m. - 1:30 p.m. until May 28th. 

Please click here for more information on the Sustainable Agriculture Program.

WGVU Invites Kimberly Schoetzow 

May 21, 2014

The SCDI Graduate Assistant, Kimberly Schoetzow was asked to give her expert knowledge on sustainability! Watch it here.

Food Matters

May 14, 2014

This month, we're celebrating some of our community-based teaching and research projects that focus on food, sustainability, and nutrition. As Dr. Sarah King says in her blog, food matters because everyone eats. The partnerships highlighted below create the context and the space in which students can take action, reflect, and deepen their learning. Click here to learn more.

ACW Challenge!

May 9, 2014

Need more energy in the morning? Make your morning commute an active one by walking, biking, taking the bus or carpool and feel energized and ready to start the day! Get the heart pumping and join fellow faculty and staff for team GVSU in the Active Commute Week Challenge May 12-16! Learn more at

GVSU named a 'Green College'

May 7, 2014

For the fifth year in a row, Grand Valley State University has been named one of the most environmentally friendly universities in the country, according to “Princeton Review’s Guide to 332 Green Colleges,” a yearly publication that recognizes excellence in sustainability in institutions of higher education. The SCDIs own Norman Christopher and Kimberly Schoetzow tell the Lanthorn more regarding this topic. Read more here.

Grand Rapids Active Commute Week

April 30, 2014

The Greater Grand Rapids Bicycle Coalition presents Active Commute Week from May 12 - 18th, 2014! In honor of National Bike to Work Week, they challenge you to think actively this spring when considering transportation in Grand Rapids. Compete as an individual, or as an employee within a participating company in this one week challenge. Awards and prizes will be awarded to winning participants! Click here for more information

SAP Farm Stand

April 28, 2014

Wednesdays at the Transformational Link (between Zumberge and Au Sable), 10:00 a.m. - 1:30 p.m. until May 28th. 

Please click here for more information on the Sustainable Agriculture Program.

Congratulations on a successful Recyclemania! 

Grand Valley ranked first in the state and in the top 35 nationwide in the composting and waste minimization categories of the nationwide recycling contest Recyclemania.

Please click here to read more.

Congratulations Sustainability Champions!

Congratulations to the following Sustainability Champions who were recognized at the Sustainability Champions Awards Breakfast on April 3rd.  Individuals were nominated for their outstanding contributions in promoting sustainability awareness and applying sustainability best practices. There were 38 nominees who received awards.   

Administration:  President Thomas Haas

Students:  Shannon Blood, Chelsea Brehm, Youssef Darwich, Dana Eardley, Justin Ebert, Daria Gosztyla, Bill Kinter, Melissa Salich, Kimberly Schoetzow, Mark Switzer, Jessica Theis, Ron Wheaton

Faculty/Staff:  Sheila Blackman, Lindsey DesArmo, James Dunn, Steve Glass, Kay Hart, Ashok Kumar, Steve Leeser, Jerrod Nickels, Erik Nordman, James Penn, James Sanford, Mary Schutten, Sue Sloop,  Vince St. Germain, Nathan Veeneman, Michael Walenta, Kim Walton

Community Members:  Ryan Cotton, Gayle Debruyn, Mayor George Heartwell, Rachel Hood, Danielle Ostafinski, Eddie Tadlock, Keith Winn

Committee Recognition:  Library Sustainability Team 

Sustainable Community Voices

Sustainable Community Voices is a monthly conversation with guests on sustainable practices.

Please click here for the February podcast.

CSA Shares 

GVSU’s Sustainable Agriculture Project is offering two successive CSA share opportunities this year! The first “season” will run from approximately the end of April through the beginning of August; the second will be offered later in the season from mid-August through December.

The attached sign-up sheet is for the first season, which will provide you with a box full of vegetables for 15 weeks – to be picked up either on campus or locally at the Sustainable Agriculture Project.

If you would like to a reserve a spot, please e-mail your completed form and payment to Levi Gardner ASAP.

Upcoming Events 

Economicology: How Wind Energy Can Power a Cleaner, Stronger America
April 24th, 4pm - 5pm
Aquinas College (Performing Arts Center),Grand Rapids, MI

Aquinas College will host the Wege Speaker Series on Thursday, April 24, 2014 (4 pm - 5 pm), featuring CEO of the American Wind Energy Association Tom Kiernan.

Tom Kiernan is one of the country's leading experts and proponents of wind power. The former head of the National Parks Conservation Association for 15 years, Kiernan also spent three years in the EPA during George H. W. Bush's administration. Kiernan and the AWEA are dedicated to increasing demand for wind power, reducing cost and addressing implementation issues.

While U.S. wind energy development is ahead of the goal of producing 20 percent of America's electricity by 2030 (and more than 80,000 jobs have been created), offshore wind projects remain controversial in Michigan and onshore projects have slowed.

Kiernan will talk about the future of wind power in the U.S. and why it is so important for the future of Michigan's economy and its environment.

RSVP for this event here

Lakeshore Crowdfunding Conference
April 23rd, 8am - 430pm
MAREC, Muskegon, MI

Join us for an EXPLORATION into Michigan's local investing movement with the new Michigan Invests Locally Exemption (MILE) Act. Learn about the elements required to build a high quality local investment market and how businesses and investors can connect with this new legislation.

More information is available here.

Grand Rapids Active Commute Week
May 12th - 18th

The Greater Grand Rapids Bicycle Coalition (GGRBC) is proud to present the Grand Rapids Active Commute Week! In honor of National Bike to Work Week, we challenge you to think actively this spring when considering transportation in Grand Rapids. Compete as an individual, or as an employee within a participating company in this one week challenge. Awards and prizes will be awarded to winning participants!

Click here for a full listing of events.

Sustainable Agriculture Project Farm Stand
Wednesdays, 10am - 2pm
Allendale campus, Kirkhof Center

Stop by the Sustainable Agriculture Project (SAP) farm stand to purchase fresh, organic produce and learn more about the SAP. Available crops include: Parsnips, radishes, beets, lettuce, spinach, kale, and chard. For more information, please visit the SAP website or GVSU's events calendar.

Meatless Monday
Grand Valley offers meatless meals at The Connection, Fresh Food Company, Kleiner, River Landing, and at the downtown Pew Campus as part of the nation-wide Meatless Monday initiative. The movement promotes education and a wider range of options as help to reduce meat consumption in order to improve personal heath and the health of the environment. Click here for more information.


Page last modified August 27, 2014