Reflections on the first month as Sustainability Commissioner

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Jenna Phillips
WUSA Sustainability Commissioner
Fri, 10/08/2021 - 14:15

Hello, Warriors! September was a whirlwind of fun, learning and excitement. From seeing old friends for the first time in years, to having class in person, and seeing lots of new sustainability initiatives happening on campus – I could not have asked for a better start to my final year as an undergraduate student given the circumstances. I also could not have asked for a better start to my term as the Sustainability Commissioner.  

What did I get up to during my first month as Sustainability Commissioner? That is what this post is all about. I feel it is important to clearly communicate my progress to maintain transparency and accountability. I will structure this post to reflect the three pillars of my work that I mentioned in my last post so it is clear to see how I am making progress towards each. 

Consolidation 

In my introductory post, I mentioned that I seek to centralize sustainability matters at the University, so that it is relevant to all staff and students, regardless of Faculty. To fulfil this, I am developing a project proposal for a new student group that would integrate voices from across the University to promote sustainability and advocate for change. This project is still in the early stages of development, but I have received plenty of valuable feedback from WUSA, staff members, and students that will help me transform this project into reality. I hope to share more details by my next reflection! 

Communication 

As with any new position, my schedule was packed this month with training, introductory calls, and strategic planning meetings. From setting a marketing strategy and content calendar, to meeting with PACES and reviewing the soon-to-be-published 2021 Sustainability Report, to brainstorming calls for sustainability in Orientation 2022, the ideas and progress I have learned over the month was really motivating. I love meeting new people, so I really enjoyed getting to know all the people I will be collaborating with over the next year to advance sustainability on campus. This month, I ran an Instagram takeover for @yourwusa to connect with the student body on sustainability matters. I provided tips for taking accessible, affordable sustainable actions, and answered your sustainability-related questions. I encourage you to follow @wusasustainability on Instagram, where posts are shared several times per week on our grid and in our stories, highlighting important sustainability information, news, and organizations you can get involved with! Special shout-out to the WSP Marketing Executive, Emily, for all the hard work she has put into the WSP platform so far. 

Consultation 

I love that I have already connected with several students and student groups interested in exploring how their ideas to promote sustainability can be integrated into campus life. I hope to continue supporting all of you over the oncoming months. If you have any ideas for promoting sustainability on campus but don’t know where to start, please reach out! I have meetings set with students over the next few weeks, from brand new projects to well-established ones, so I am happy to help you at any stage of your idea. 

What’s next? 

Things are really gearing up for the term now, and I am so excited for all that is coming. Here is a quick snapshot of what I will be up to during the month of October: 

  • October 18th is the start of Waste Week at the University. Throughout the month of October, WSP will be sharing resources and features related to waste reduction on campus. You should also check out what the Sustainability Office is doing, because there are some great events about waste reduction and opportunities to win prizes! 

  • Keep an eye out on the @uwsustainable Instagram page, where I will be doing a takeover on October 20th!  

  • I plan on filming a ‘sustainability tour’ of campus (weather contingent). This tour would highlight all the sustainability features and programs on campus that you can take advantage of. Stay tuned for more on this project!  

  • I will keep working hard on my exciting project related to consolidation. I have a few more consultation meetings about it over the next few weeks to really hash out the fine details. 

That is all from me. Again, if you have any questions, concerns, or would like support for your sustainability ideas and projects, please do not hesitate to reach out to wsp@wusa.ca.  

Until next month, Warriors! 

 

Jenna Phillips (she/her) 

WUSA Sustainability Commissioner