UNE is uniquely positioned as an educational institution to contribute research, foster innovation, and provide a model for environmental sustainability to the University campuses and greater community. Teaching environmental stewardship, both by example and through living and learning experiences, ensures UNE’s contribution to a cleaner, healthier environment.

President Danielle Ripich, Ph.D. affirmed the University’s dedication to environmental sustainability on November 3, 2008 when she signed the American College and University Presidents’ Climate Commitment. The institutional structures, student involvement, faculty and staff guidance, campus initiatives and organizational vision signal the expansion of UNE’s reputation to include leadership in environmental health and sustainability.

From campus Zipcars to the growing recycling program and “green” conference offerings, UNE is embarking on new initiatives all the time to protect the environment and make the University community more aware of sustainable options.

Conservation Efforts

UNE has preserved 190 acres of University land, including 38 vernal pools, with conservation easements in perpetuity. This conserved area continues to serve as a natural laboratory for UNE researchers and science and environmental studies classes, while also benefitting the community as a whole.

Green Recognition

UNE has been included among the Princeton Review’s “Guide to 375 Green Colleges.” The guide features four-year colleges that have demonstrated a high level of commitment to the environment and sustainability. 

Eco-Rep Program

Sustainable UNE Work-Study Opportunity

The Eco-Rep Program seeks to advance the awareness of campus environmental concerns and initiatives through Peer Education and Leadership.  

The University of New England Eco-Rep Program is designed to raise awareness about ecological issues and encourage environmentally responsible behavior of campus residents, commuters, faculty, and professional staff. The Sustainability Office manages the recycling and waste reduction programs, alternative transportation, energy conservation, greenhouse gas emissions accounting, edible campus, and sustainable landscaping programs, and more.  Eco-Reps are integrally involved in developing and implementing communication strategies and doing the work of each of these programs.  Tasks may include weeding campus gardens, transporting recyclable waste across campus, staffing informational tables, distributing posters and newsletters, writing blog articles or posting on social media, maintaining the Living Wall and aquaponics lab, or entering greenhouse gas emissions data.  Eco-Reps routinely interact with various campus groups, including but not limited to the Honeybee Conservation Club, Aquaponics Club, Environmental Council, Carbon Monitoring Task Force, and Planetary Health Council. Weekly meetings update all members on activities, share resources, brainstorm, and troubleshoot.  

UNE Eco-Reps have

  • Effective written and oral communication skills 
  • Ability to work independently and collaboratively
  • Ability to see projects through to completion
  • Ability to learn about environmental topics and relate the information to peers
  • Motivational quality to engage peers through their passion for the environment and UNE
  • Enthusiasm and creativity
  • Strong work ethic

UNE Eco-Reps will get

  • Professional and leadership development
  • Knowledge of environmental topics 
  • Experience and support of working with other passionate students
  • Connections to and working knowledge of university groups (i.e. Carbon Monitoring Task Force, Earth’s ECO, Environmental Council, Facilities Management, Residence Life and Sustainability Office)
  • Workstudy hourly rate (State of Maine minimum wage)
  • Opportunity to have a stellar career recommendation written at completion of year
  • Opportunity to have a lasting impact on fellow students and the UNE community!

To apply

Apply Through UNE’s Handshake platform and send an email of interest to Alethea Cariddi, assistant director of Sustainability, at acariddi@une.edu.

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