American Studies

Sustainability Action Plan

In Fall 2013, Wesleyan began work on its first Sustainability Action Plan (SAP), which will expand on the existing Climate Action Plan (CAP) to include a greater focus on academics and social sustainability goals.  The SAP will include goals, objectives, and short-, mid-, and long-term strategies to move Wesleyan toward neutrality and create a more sustainable campus. One of the foci of the SAP is making the process as inclusive as possible, to get input from students, faculty, and staff and give the community ownership over this new plan.  To this end, The Sustainability Office and SAGES have organized multiple ways for the community to be involved.

Progress and Timeline

  • In December 2013, The Sustainability Office and SAGES distributed an all-campus survey to gather input on perceptions of campus sustainability efforts and on the proposed outline for the new Sustainability Action Plan.
  • The Sustainability Office and SAGES held a February 21 workshop to brainstorm ideas for the SAP.  Over 50 students, faculty, staff, and administrators met to brainstorm goals and strategies in 13 topic areas.
  • On March 24th, SAGES will hold a meeting to plan next steps for the SAP.  At this meeting, we discussed:
    • The proposed structure of the SAP.
    • Forming working groups to develop the 13 sections of the plan.
  • During the spring 2014 semester, the 12 working groups (buildings and grounds have combined for planning purposes) held meetings to set goals, objectives, and strategies in their respective sections. 
  • Through the end of 2014, the Sustainability Office will work with each working group to refine ideas and build a cohesive plan, with a target completion date of early 2015.

Working Groups/SAGES Subcommittees


Group Leader

Buildings and Grounds Improving sustainability of new and existing buildings, as well as grounds Roseann Sillasen
Dining and Food Increasing sustainable food and beverage purchases, reducing waste, and using sustainable products Michelle Myers-Brown
Diversity, Equity, Inclusion, and Affordability Increasing diversity, inclusion, and equity on campus and making Wesleyan education affordable Renee Johnson-Thornton
Education and Research Integrating sustainability into curriculum and research
Energy Conserving energy, improving efficiency, and increasing the use of renewable energy Peter Staye
Engagement (Campus and Community) Expanding and improving extra-curricular sustainability learning experiences and giving back to the community Erinn Roos-Brown
Health and Well-Being Improving the health and well-being of the Wesleyan community Pat Melley
Planning Institutionalizing campus sustainability policies and practices Jen Kleindienst
Purchasing Increasing sustainable purchases and companies that support sustainability Olga Bookas
Transportation Decreasing single-person vehicle travel, increasing the use of alternative transportation, and decreasing air travel Bill Nelligan
Waste Increasing waste reduction, reuse, and recycling Jeff Sweet
Water Reducing campus water usage Sherri Condon

If you are interested in writing or editing the SAP, please contact Jen Kleindienst.