Apr 29, 2020

Vancouver, BC – The Langara Sustainability Student Ambassadors have recently concluded their 13-week projects. The ambassadors are a small group of students passionate about sustainability and positive environmental change, led and organized by co-op student Clauzi Guerini. His goal: to create a robust – and sustainable – sustainability volunteer program on campus to raise awareness and increase engagement of sustainability initiatives.

The funding for the co-op student position was made possible through financial assistance from the KPMG Foundation. "It was so great to see and hear the passion of the students for this initiative,” says C.J. James, KPMG partner.  

This student ambassadors are enrolled in the Post-Degree Diploma (PDD) Business Administration program and brought diverse life experience as they designed and developed their projects.  

“I learned a lot about teamwork, and learn more about sustainability and how to apply it; it was very special,” said Marianna Rocha, Sustainability Ambassador. “I am very happy and proud to be part of this team. I had a dream to work on sustainability after my graduation here, so it was great I got to work on this while I was a student here.”

The initiatives planned included:

  • a waste-sorting game on Pink Shirt Day
  • an analysis of campus engagement in the Advancement of Sustainability in Higher Education (AASHE) STARS certification process
  • a transparent bin project designed to test waste stream contamination rates
  • ASSHE STARS benchmarking to see how Langara is measuring against other institutions
  • a biodiversity keeper project to enhance the campus through establishing butterfly-friendly gardens
  • a field trip to Lynn Canyon to explore elements of social sustainability

“The work has just started. We have a future goal to reach bronze for STARS and I’m sure the program will help accomplish this goal. Being able to manage this project with the students was really amazing,” added Guerini, Sustainability Co-op student and Sustainability Ambassador Lead. 

The students compiled more than 200 hours of volunteer time on these projects on top of assisting recycling initiatives for other major official Langara events upon request. 

To expand their reach, the sustainability ambassadors involved Langara’s student volunteer program, VOLT, to solicit volunteers to create a ‘Green Team’ to help their initiatives along.

“I really enjoyed being part of the Green Team. I got to learn a lot of new things about the environment, and this was also a really big part of my school experience. It helped me with getting out of my comfort zone and talking to people, approaching them, and educating them about waste management,” said Kartik Thakral, Business Management program student and Green Team volunteer.

As a member of AASHE, Langara’s Sustainability Committee has set a goal of attaining bronze level in their tracking and assessment system.

“It was a chance to build a network, meet amazing people, and talk about a subject I really liked: sustainability,” said Mariana Silvestrini, Sustainability Ambassador. “Canada is strong in sustainability. It’s been a great experience.”  

“The sustainability student ambassadors have set the bar high for people moving forward. What has been accomplished is amazing to see, and we are going to continue forward. Great work,” said Dwayne Doornbosch, Director, Facilities. 

Due to COVID-19, many of these projects, though carefully and thoughtfully planned out, were unable to be completed fully. We thank the students for their efforts in circumstances not within their control. If you would like to learn more, you are invited to view the full student presentation.

About snəw̓eyəɬ leləm̓ Langara College
Located in beautiful Vancouver, B.C., Canada, snəw̓eyəɬ leləm̓ Langara College provides University, Career, and Continuing Studies education to more than 23,000 students annually. With more than 1,700 courses and 130 programs, Langara’s expansive academic breadth and depth allows students of all ages, backgrounds, and life stages to choose their own educational path. Langara is also known as snəw̓eyəɬ leləm̓, a name given to it by the Musqueam people on whose unceded traditional territory the College is located. Langara is celebrating its 49th year on West 49th Avenue with Beyond 49, an integrated celebration, alumni engagement, and fundraising campaign to reconnect with alumni, and raise funds for student support and important College initiatives.

Learn more.
Deborah Schratter
Communications Officer 
Langara College 
dschratter@langara.ca 
604.323.5014

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