May 20, 2024

Carnegie Mellon introduces EcoCampus initiative

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Carnegie Mellon University in Qatar (CMU-Q) campus
Carnegie Mellon University in Qatar (CMU-Q) campus

Carnegie Mellon University in Qatar (CMU-Q), a Qatar Foundation partner university, has launched an initiative to implement United Nations Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs) at the campus. The EcoCampus initiative, led by the Foundation for Environmental Education, is a structured plan to improve sustainability for the entire community.

Michael Trick, the dean of CMU-Q

Michael Trick, the dean of CMU-Q, is a strong supporter of a more sustainable campus: “Our students are at the start of their career journeys. This EcoCampus initiative is an opportunity for them to develop the leadership skills to make sustainable changes now, and then take these tools to inspire change in the world.”

Carnegie Mellon University has prioritized sustainability by creating a global campus initiative to strengthen CMU’s commitment to the United Nation’s Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs). Alexandra Hiniker, director of the sustainability initiative at the Pittsburgh campus, visited CMU-Q to learn more about the EcoCampus Initiative.

Jennifer Bruder, associate teaching professor in psychology

“Our goal is to work together as a community so the place we study and work is more sustainable,” said Jennifer Bruder, associate teaching professor in psychology and a co-chair of the EcoCampus initiative. Elissar El-Akra Hajjar, CMU-Q’s director of facilities, also serves as co-chair.

“This is important for the entire community, but especially our students,” said Bruder. “They have the enthusiasm and sense of purpose to make a real change.”

Elissar El-Akra Hajjar, CMU-Q’s director of facilities

EcoCampus includes students, staff and faculty members at CMU-Q and will touch every aspect of campus life. The team hopes the initiative will earn CMU-Q an FEE EcoCampus green flag designation.

Over the next year, CMU-Q’s EcoCampus initiative will tackle three main areas: food equity, climate change, and campus waste management.

Faisal Al-Thani is a third-year information systems student at CMU-Q and a student leader in the EcoCampus initiative.

“Genuine change can stem from a single individual, and I believe students need to remember the impact they can make when working together as a community,” said Al-Thani. “I encourage my peers to make sustainability a priority and a value they carry in their lives.”

Over the year, CMU-Q will be documenting the process to create a roadmap for other campuses. “We want every campus in Qatar to have a green flag,” said Bruder. “We want all students in Qatar to feel that they can make the planet a healthier place to live.”

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