November 2023

Take a sus course this spring

From English and economics to geology and psychology there is a SUS course for everyone. SUS-attributed courses at Weber State University focus on or feature sustainability topics in their learning outcomes, helping students connect course material to the big picture.  You can find courses with the SUS attribute using the advanced search options in the registration portal.

Free Swap | WSU's free thrifting event

It's almost time for the biggest free thrift event at Weber State! The Sustainable Clubs will be hosting a Free Swap on Nov. 28 and 29.

Donate clothes, shoes, and knick-knacks you no longer want from 8:30 a.m. – 4:30 p.m. on Tuesday the 28, in Ballroom C, located in the Shepherd Union. Donations of the following will not be accepted; large appliances, damaged furniture, hazardous materials, or weapons. Look here for a full list of donation guidelines.

On Wednesday, Nov. 29 you can pick up free preloved treasures from 8:30 a.m. – 4:30 p.m. in Ballroom C.

Thrifting is a great alternative to supporting fast fashion industries. Fast fashion (the swift change and production of fashion) is a detriment to the sustainability of the global society, environment, and economy. Buying secondhand is more affordable (or free) and gives items a new life instead of a landfill burial.

The Free Swap is a wonderful opportunity to replace old items with new ones you’ll love, in a smart caring way. 

Go to GivePulse for more information, or to volunteer to help make the event a success.

Zero Waste and Sustainable Purchasing Seminar

Weber State University has made great strides toward reducing much of our pollution and greenhouse gas (GHG) emissions, but there is still work that needs to be done, and you can help!  

Companies and other organizations measure GHG emissions in 3 categories to help tackle the unique challenges associated with each type of emission. Scope 1 emissions are direct emissions controlled by an organization, such as the gas used for onsite fleet vehicles or the natural gas for heating buildings. Scope 2 emissions are indirect emissions, such as emissions that come from electricity which is purchased from utilities. Scope 3 emissions are a combination of everything else including purchased items, waste, and commuter transportation. 

WSU has significantly reduced our scope 1 and 2 emissions but needs help from faculty, staff, and students to address scope 3 emissions.  To tackle these sources of emissions all those who work and learn on campus play a role. Through learning, creative problem-solving, and taking action, the campus community can make an impact.  

WSU has a goal to divert 50% of our waste from the landfill by 2025, and to be Zero Waste by 2050. Currently, we divert 39% of our waste by reducing, reusing, composting, and recycling. To reach our 2025 goal, we need to divert 11% more. You can help.

Analeah Vaughn, WSU’s Sustainability Coordinator, has created Green Purchasing Guidelines to help staff and faculty find quality products, which also reduce the greenhouse gas emissions and environmental impacts associated with university purchasing. 

Vaughn is hosting a Zero Waste Lunch and Learn on Nov. 10 from 1-2 p.m. in the Stewart Library Hetzel-Hoellein Room (LI-321). You are invited to join her to learn more about how you can make a difference, and brainstorm solutions to address recycling contamination, reduce event waste, and tackle other forms of waste. You can RSVP via GivePulse here.

Pond Renovation Update

In 2023, Weber State University embarked on a mission to enhance the beauty and functionality of the campus pond. This project was set to wrap up by the end of October but is now extending into November due to the wet weather conditions this year.

Did you know that our beloved duck pond is more than just a scenic spot? It's a central part of our stormwater management system. It serves as a retention pond, effectively cleaning stormwater before it rejoins the local system. Periodic draining and maintenance allow for the removal of pollutants that accumulate over time. To facilitate this process, the pond was deepened by four feet, and a concrete bottom was added for easier access during cleaning.

One of the major goals of this renovation is to upgrade the old fountain, which has had operational issues for quite some time. WSU carefully chose a great replacement. The fountain not only adds to the aesthetic appeal of our campus but also serves a crucial role in improving the water quality of the pond. The new fountain can shoot the water higher with greater control.
To combat algae build-up and maintain water clarity, WSU installed pumps that will circulate the water efficiently. The improved water circulation and new fountain will be powerful allies against algae issues.

This project is a significant step forward in enhancing our stormwater quality, which, in turn, contributes to the health of our local environment.

The Sustainable Clubs in Review

The Zero Waste coordinator Allison Brown was honored alongside the rest of the sustainable club presidents and members during the pregame football event on October 7. Alli has led Zero Waste initiatives by recovering thousands of bottles with the help of the club’s members. Cheers to the spirited team at the Zero Waste football games!

Voter Education Week has been a roaring success thus far as well! Keep an eye out for upcoming events on the calendar.

The food recovery network sends out heartfelt appreciation to their dedicated volunteers. Your commitment is what makes this mission possible. When you volunteer for a semi-weekly food recovery at WSU you help package and load food for transport to the Lantern House. Get involved in a meaningful way while making connections—additionally, every volunteer receives a $15 Smith’s gift card. 

A big thank you to everyone involved in tucking the garden in for the season. Your hands have sown seeds of sustainability and community at Weber State. The Garden Club is counting down the days till they’ll see you again!

America Recycles Day


Wildcat Tech is celebrating America Recycles Day on Nov. 15 by Hosting Pale Blue Earth at the Shepherd Union Building. Pale Blue Earth is a local company that makes sustainably sourced rechargeable lithium batteries for everyday household use. Join them in the celebration by bringing your old alkaline batteries (dry cell batteries only please, no batteries larger than a cell phone/Tablet battery) to any of the Wildcat Store locations between Nov. 13 and 17 for free recycling. Please see Wildcat Tech for details. 

Wildcat Tech will continue the celebration by having Pale Blue’s Batteries available in each of their stores and on sale that week for 10% off. Participate in America Recycles Day with Wildcat Tech!

Plant Based Holidays

For many, a family feast on Thanksgiving is the epitome of fall. However, guilt can follow the big meal—it’s easy to produce a lot of waste during the holiday and put your personal health, and the Earth’s, on the back burner (next to the gravy). 

With a little conscious effort, sustainable choices can be smoothly woven into your traditions. Here are some steps that are easy as pie:

Use washable napkins—Make your own set or buy some cloth napkins to use, wash, and repeat!

Favor reusable shopping and produce bags over plastic—Bring your own bags for produce and groceries when you shop.

Save vegetable scraps for making stock—Freezing the ends, peels, and skins of vegetables and then simmering them into stock is a tasty way to abate your food waste. Plus who doesn’t love warm healing soup during the cold months?

Skip the paper plates and plastic cutlery—Using non-disposable dinnerware for your meal is an easy way to dial up the cozy atmosphere. 

Store leftovers in reusable containers—Have guests bring containers to take home leftovers. Skip the stream of plastic wrap and tinfoil. 

Let the spotlight shine on plant-based recipes for your table—Plant-based food is healthier for you and the planet. Try swapping ingredients in your current recipes for more sustainable dishes. Choose olive oil, vegan butter, or coconut oil instead of butter. Use non-dairy milks or creams. Try lentils, legumes, or tofu instead of meat.

Try this take on the beloved Thanksgiving classic, Vegan Green Bean Casserole by “Minimalist Baker.” 

This elegant Roasted Beets with Citrus recipe from “Love and Lemons” will stun your guests while brightening your table.  

Bake this vegan Sinless Sticky Toffee Pecan Pudding from “Oh She Glows” for a decadent seasonal dessert.

Green Badge Program Updates


Participate in the Green Badge Program and start earning your badges today! November’s Green Badge is “Zero Waste”.  Learn how to incorporate the concept of reuse, reduce, and recycle into your daily life.  

Five people earned October’s “Social Sustainability” Badge. Way to go! 

Justin Sciarini shared how earning the Air Quality Green Badge benefited him and his loved ones! 

“Myself and family members have some health complications that are impacted by poor air quality and I learned some suggestions of how to help with exercise and being outdoors,” Sciarini said


Green Teams Updates

Join a Green Team today! The Green Department Program is for faculty and staff to learn ways to make their departments or offices more sustainable. Green Teams work together to earn points and recognition by implementing change and taking actions outlined in a Green Team checklist.  

See the current team rankings here.

Upcoming Events

17th Annual WSU Native Symposium Keynote: Darren Parry
Thursday, November 9
5:30 – 7:30 p.m.
Stewart Library, Hetzel-Hoellein room
More information

Zero Waste Lunch and Learn
Friday, November 10
Stewart Library, Hetzel-Hoellein room
1 – 2 p.m.

Zero Waste Athletics–Football
Saturday, November 11
Stewart Stadium
1 – 4:30 p.m.
Register to Help

SPARC Sustainability Film Series – "Do I Need This"
Thursday, November 16
Shepherd Union, Wildcat Theater
12 – 2 p.m.
See Events Calendar

Free Swap (Drop off day)
Tuesday, November 28
Shepherd Union, Ballroom C
8:30 a.m. – 4:30 p.m.
Register to Help

Free Swap (Pick up day)
Wednesday, November 29
Shepherd Union, Ballroom C
8:30 a.m. – 4:30 p.m.
Register to Help

Holiday Market
Thursday, November 30
Shepherd Union Atrium
9 a.m. – 2 p.m.
See Events Calendar

Climate Change and Human Migration
Wednesday, December 6
Weber County Library, Pleasant Valley Branch
7 p.m.
Learn More


News & Resources

Shoshone author Darren Parry to headline 17th Annual Native Symposium | WSU Today

Readout of the White House Convening on Right to Repair | The White House

This is your right to repair. |

Weber State surpasses 30,000 students, sets record for Hispanic and Latino enrollment | WSU Today

Talk Like a Human: Lessons on how to communicate climate change | Potential Energy Coalition