Posted by: Spring Greeney | February 4, 2009

1.28.09 Meeting Minutes

“Feedback and Reflection”

Members present: Nicole DeSantis (Continuing Ed), Stephen Jensen (GSAS), Marty Leape (HILR), Allison Myers (HKS), Andrew Foss (HKS), Todd Orenstein (HBS), Garrett Smith (HBS), Moeko Yoshitomi (SEAS), Gracie Brown (FAS), Andrew Costigan (HGSE), Lina Swisloski (HGSE), Josie McVitty (SEAS), Erin (HMS), Julia Roos (HSPH), Shannon Simms (GSD), Dan Chandler (GSAS), Peter James (HSPH), Aron Chang (GSD, HCC Coordinator), Spring Greeney (FAS, HCC Coordinator)

Guest speakers: none (group discussion)

Introductions, recap last meeting

Student presentation: Todd Orenstein and Garrett Smith on changes at HBS

Full presentation available here.

FEEDBACK AND DISCUSSION:

Q: How can Harvard better engage students in this reduction process?

Communication strategies:

  • Short (1 page) monthly or quarterly email “from the top:” President Faust, Ed Forst, or Heather Henriksen
  • Yearly reports on progress at each school (ex: HMS annual report available here)
  • More accessible/navigable website:
    • information on energy use at each school
    • Information on administrative structure at each school
    • School “demographics:” square footage, operating budget, etc.
    • “Roadmap” of reduction attainment strategy
  • Concern: “green teams” will not inspire the sort of cultural change necessary.  Need for more fundamental institutional changes

Institutional changes:

  • Student social entrepreneurship fund to take advantage of student innovation and channel their ambitions.  (See Big Ideas at Berkeley)
  • Expanded course offerings, and for-credit options (internships with OFS) on implementation
  • Student-taught, University-funded classes (see Tufts’ ExCollege)
  • “Jan-Term” classes and programs for students interested in implementation. (perhaps like Aron’s “Interschool Charettes idea?”)
  • Searchable universal calendar to emphasize huge number of environment/energy-related goings-on at Harvard.

Q: What is HCC doing well?  What can we change to be more effective? (revisitation of group purpose):

  • Provides good information to students, interaction with each other and administrators
  • Still, dearth of information; what has happened since the Oct 22 event?
  • Not enough discussion time
  • Lack of concrete actions and associated accountability; what are members accomplishing on each campus?
    • Suggestion: monthly theme and list of action steps for each individual (e.g. campus composting,
    • Suggestion: more quick “check-ins” at beginning of each meeting (“What did you get done this past month at your school?

Overview: HCC Annual Report – needs from each school.  Submissions to Aron and Spring by February 27.   Document is available here.

Adjourn to flooded streets of Cambridge.

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