Pellissippi State Community College was recognized as a Knoxville leader in sustainability initiatives at a GoGreenET event May 14.
Attended by L. Anthony Wise Jr., Pellissippi State president, and Karen Lively, the college’s new sustainable campus coordinator, the event included recognition of the school as a “Green Achiever,” a program dedicated to recognizing East Tennessee businesses for sustainability initiatives.
“Pellissippi State is proud to join the ranks of other East Tennessee Green Achievers,” said Wise, “and we look forward to continuing to be a leader in environmentally responsible initiatives and programs that reduce our carbon footprint and benefit our students, faculty, and staff.”
“It was wonderful to see how many businesses and organizations in the area are adopting greener practices,” Lively said.
To be recognized as a Green Achiever, Pellissippi State completed a survey outlining more than 100 ways an organization could encourage green business practices. Green Achievers must have accomplished at least one item in each category and have scored at least 30 points.
“It’s very exciting that Pellissippi State met most of the criteria in the recycling, energy and water conservation, and waste reduction categories,” said Lively. “We’ve already implemented some effective sustainability measures and will be incorporating even more in the future, such as providing reusable bags and water bottles to students at New Student Orientation and constructing a solar pavilion.”
Pellissippi State has launched a number of green programs through its Sustainable Campus Initiative in recent years. The college employs recycling, water refilling stations, purchase of “green block” renewable energy, automatic light switches and faucets, hybrid vehicles for staff and faculty use, electric charging stations for alternative fuel vehicles, and replacement of traditional lighting with low-energy LED in the Clayton Performing Arts Center.
Pellissippi State students even voted to enact a sustainable campus fee of $10 per student for each semester. The funds go toward initiatives to make the college a healthier, more environmentally friendly space.
One recent initiative embraced by students and the full-service Cafeteria on the Hardin Valley Campus is Meatless Monday, an international movement aimed at reducing meat consumption by encouraging everyone to avoid meat one day of the week.
GoGreenET.com is an online resource hosted by the Greater Knoxville Business Journal. The site provides information to guide East Tennessee businesses and organizations toward improved environmental responsibility and energy efficiency.
For additional information on the college’s sustainability efforts, call at (865) 694-6400.