Semester of Degree Completion

2016

Degree Type

Thesis

Degree Name

Master of Science (MS)

Thesis Director

Dianne Timm

Abstract

Environmental sustainability is a substantial issue within our world today that is on the forefront of policy makers' minds. Implementation of sustainability initiatives on a college campus comes in many forms and different scales, which falls upon the question of who manages all the moving pieces to make these initiatives successful. This study was designed to gain an understanding of how administrators are defining and implementing environmental sustainability initiatives on their campus, to understand their role in managing these tasks. Using a qualitative approach, the researcher interviewed a purposeful sample of four higher education administrators from one public Midwestern university. The participants worked in areas of sustainability management, housing and dining services, faculty, and business affairs. Results showed that administrators have a basic knowledge and understanding to implement sustainability efforts. Participants discussed that to better manage sustainability efforts collaboration and student engagement which needs to be led by someone, thus showing the importance of a sustainability coordinator position within the university structure.

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