Woven Into the Fabric...No Comment

Ashley Thorne

We have a new category of postings for the NAS website: items we quote without comment from articles, books, websites, and other sources. Some of the items that will appear here strike us as so perfect of their kind that our comment would be superfluous.  Perfection, of course, comes in many varieties. We will report perfect inanity, perfect inflation of triviality to academic bombast, perfect pretension in the pursuit of shabby ends, and perfect sophistry, as well as the occasional perfect moments of lucidity and good argument. 

We won’t be commenting on these items (at least in words), but our readers may have something to add.

Our no-comment text for today is an excerpt from an article in Inside Higher Ed, entitled, “Sustainable for a Year.” The author interviewed Julian Keniry, director of campus and community leadership for the National Wildlife Foundation’s Campus Ecology program. Keniry offers suggestions for infusing sustainability into higher education for the long-term:

With many different ways of raising awareness about sustainability, Keniry urges colleges to look past small reforms in carbon usage and approach sustainability as an issue woven into the fabric of every university, rather than as a passing fad. For example, she says that putting performance goals and objectives into faculty and staff evaluations can help keep university employees cognizant of ongoing sustainability issues. Going through residential life, she says, can be a good way to reach students who otherwise wouldn't think to ask how they can be more environmentally sustainable.

According to Keniry, regardless of the means of making a campus more sustainable, the biggest objective should be finding an "Institutionalizing mechanism" -- somehow making sure that the school's sustainability practices last indefinitely as the university moves forward.

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