The goal of this annual award is to recognize campus groups and departments that are helping to further the University's sustainability mission as identified in Educating Illinois. Research projects, ongoing environmental education programs, individual efforts, and innovative program implementation are just a few of the efforts that are acceptable for recognition.
Recipients of the Environmental Stewardship Award are given public recognition at the Founder's Day Celebration and their name is added to the ESA plaque in the Bone Student Center. Additionally, recipients receive a $500 award to be used toward future environmental initiatives at Illinois State University.
2017 - Tailgate Recycling - Student athlete Amelia Stevens (Women’s Basketball) and former athlete Kadi Ilves (Women’s Tennis) increased Redbird fan participation in recycling at Athletic events through incentivized programs and on-site interaction. They gathered other student athletes to distribute blue recycling bags at tailgating and personally encouraged fans to minimize waste and be responsible Redbirds. The athletes also worked with the Athletics and Recycling staff to provide additional waste minimization and commodity capture programs throughout the athletic facilities including public spaces, weight rooms and locker rooms. These Redbird Athletes support their fellow athletes, the fans and extended ISU family while demonstrating their commitment to be responsible stewards of the planet. They are excellent models of Redbird values and spirit.
2016 - Outdoor Classroom at the Horticulture Center (CAST & CAS) - The Horticulture Center and Horticulture & Landscape Management Program in the Department of Agriculture, with the assistance of the Curator of the Fell Arboretum in the Department of Biology, completed the first phase of a collaborative student-focused project to build an outdoor classroom and demonstration green roof on the grounds of the Horticulture Center. The faculty and students completed the seating area and landscape for the classroom which will be utilized for campus educational programming as well as a community resource. This exterior classroom leverages the site’s topography and terrain to showcase the integration of learning spaces into the natural environment.
2015 – Joe Cleary (CAST, Technology) - Joe Cleary, Department of Technology, has lead consecutive teams of students to win awards in the Department of Energy's Race to Zero Competition. The competition is based on a real-world scenario where a builder needs to update or develop a high-performance home product line. Illinois State's teams have designed winning net-zero energy homes and multi-family complexes, and their plans have been incorporated for use by Habitat for Humanity.
Participation in this competition demonstrates the University's commitment to providing environmental solutions while providing students with real-world problem-solving and teamwork skills. Students become part of a new leadership movement to achieve truly sustainable homes and become the next generation of building science professionals.
2014 – ISU Weibring Golf Course (Athletics)
The Illinois State University Golf Course received certification as an Audobon Cooperative Sanctuary in Environmental Planning through the work of Golf Course Superintendent Mike Rayman, Horticulture faculty Dr. Dave Kopsell, and graduate students Wyatt Byrd and Jacob Kuban.
This certification demonstrates the University's commitment to the ecological health of all areas of campus, and recognizes the important environmental role of the institution as a partner in the community. The ISU golf course hosts scores of public events, competitions, and teams from across the state and the nation and is now one of the few certified Audobon Cooperative Sanctuary golf courses in collegiate athletics.
The faculty and staff did an outstanding job of incorporating students into the program providing them with valuable and sought after experience. The Environmental Planning program is one of six certificates in the Audobon program, and future students from across multiple departments will aid in the remainder of the program implementations.
2013 – Good to Go (Mike McCurdy, WGLT)
Good To Go is an ongoing community wide project designed to encourage healthy lifestyles and promote the use of sustainable transportation options. The initiative's primary event is an annual Commuter Challenge, a friendly competition between individuals, teams and workplaces.
Since its inception in 2010, Good To Go has increased participation in the annual Commuter Challenge by 137%. Participants choosing human powered modes of transportation, like cycling or walking, burned 880,000 calories since 2010, traveled 95,000 sustainable miles and curbed 42 tons of carbon. A survey of participants have helped provide a framework of motivations and barriers to alternative transportation. This information has been utilized to enhance campus and community transportation options and commuter pathways.
The efforts of the Good To Go team, led by Mike McCurdy, have provided the resources and support to transform the campus and community
2012 – Dave Kennel (CAST, Technology)
The 2012 Environmental Stewardship Award is being presented to Dave Kennel and his students in Technology for their development and fabrication of Energy Monitoring Devices. This innovative and practical application for student learning has direct impact on behavior in regard to energy usage and consumption. The students designed and fabricated the monitors which have been used in campus offices to help raise awareness of how much energy is used by many of the systems and appliances in departments across the institution. The students also wrote grant applications and made presentations to committees in order to obtain funds for the parts. Dave Kennell created a collaborative learning space and laboratory for the students, including all the necessary components to fabricate the devices.
2011 - Student Herb Garden (Student Environmental Action Coalition)
2010 - Grounds and Fleet Management (Division of Finance and Planning
2009 – Campus Dining Services (Division of Student Affairs)
2008 – University Wind Team (Center for Renewable Energy)