In so many ways, Unity College is leading the charge for sustainability in higher education and other sectors. Certainly President Mitch Thomashow has encouraged Unity students and employees to see our work as an important response to a global emergency, setting our sustainability efforts in a broader context. As the Sustainability Monitor frequently focuses on internal campus sustainability efforts, it’s important to also remind ourselves that we don’t do this work in isolation. These next few posts will highlight some of the ways in which we’re engaging others to advance sustainability beyond our campus.
We start with a letter to Senator Susan Collins from the presidents of the Maine Independent College Association (MICA). The letter expresses Maine college support to fund the Department of Education University Sustainability Program (USP) to the tune of $25 million. According to the letter:
The program authorizes competitive grant funding for colleges and universities to develop, implement, and evaluate sustainability education programs and practices.
Though the letter comes from private college presidents, it emphasizes Maine’s statewide higher education commitment to sustainability, noting that 75% of our students attend ACUPCC signatory institutions, both private and public. You can get a great sense of the USP from the letter itself, and you can learn more about this important legislation from Second Nature by clicking here. The letter was signed by President Mitch Thomashow, MICA and University of New England President Danielle Ripich, and nine other Maine College presidents.