What We Do
Sustain SU is proud to be at the heart of sustainability at the University of Alberta’s Students’ Union. We are a service that provides peer-to-peer learning and support for all undergraduate students to incorporate sustainability into their university experience. This includes providing sustainability-based services to the entire campus community, as well as opportunities to facilitate change on a larger scale.
Since our inception in 2003, we have adapted our services to the needs of the campus community and our volunteers. Our work has impacted countless volunteers, staff, students and campus community members. We hope to continue to do so into the future.
We offer volunteers many experiences that are both challenging and rewarding.
You will have the opportunity to work alongside people from diverse backgrounds: from university officials, to other hard-working colleagues, to those involved in sustainability projects and organizations across the city. Volunteers are offered: projects to manage, professional development opportunities, and community-building sessions. We encourage volunteers to propose, create and pursue new ideas to help impact the sustainability of UAlberta.
Our volunteers act as representatives of Sustain SU and the Students’ Union, and are asked to reflect our vision mission and values throughout all of their work and activities.
During the academic year we offer Community Service Learning (CSL) projects for students who want to contribute to campus sustainability while receiving course credits. If you would like to work with us, please ask a teacher if doing a project through CSL is an option for your course!
Depending on a person’s knowledge of sustainability, how comfortable they are with our initiatives and the roles and responsibilities they are willing to take on, there are two types of volunteers within Sustain SU: Sustainability Ambassadors (SAs) and Leadership Team Volunteers (LTs).
Sustainability Ambassadors are volunteers who contribute to the success of Sustain SU's initiatives. Recruitment begins for new and returning volunteers at the end of August. Following recruitment, group interviews take place in mid-to-late September. A group of six to eight Sustainability Ambassadors are then selected by Leadership Team Volunteers for their initiatives.
Leadership Team Volunteer positions are offered to dedicated past volunteers and then to successful applicants. The LTVs operate and maintain Sustain SU’s initiatives, while the Sustain SU staff provide them with tools and support they need to accomplish their tasks. Not only do LTVs gain valuable experience collaborating with their SAs and managing projects, but they also become members of the Sustain SU Leadership Team (LT).
The Leadership Team is the group that makes decisions to guide the direction of the service. It is comprised of the Sustain SU’s staff and all Leadership Team Volunteers. We apply a consensus-based decision-making model to ensure each member of the group has equal say and buy-in to all decisions being made. All internal and human resources decisions are made by the LT as a whole at designated LT meetings, which occur once every three weeks.
SUSTAIN SU's CURRENT INITIATIVES
Sustain SU is categorized into three main working groups. These working groups collaborate to ensure that all of our projects, events, campaigns, and engagement activities make an impact!
WORKING WITH THE OFFICE OF SUSTAINABILITY
The Sustainability Council is both our main collaborator for ongoing projects and our sponsor for the Reusable Dish Project and Bike Library & Workshop. At Sustain SU, we work closely to deliver three special events throughout the year. Environment Week in June, Sustainable Awareness Week in October, and the Student Sustainability Summit in January. While our organizations maintain similar mandates, we attempt to differentiate our offerings whenever and wherever possible.
Our spaces are Green Spaces Gold Certified. Certify your events, offices, and laboratories!
Monday to Friday
Best available by appointment.
Sustain SU Office
0-81 Student Life Central desk Lower Level
Students' Union Building
University of Alberta
8900 - 114 Street NW