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Learn about the Student Sustainability Center
Our vision: The Student Sustainability Center empowers all students to be keepers of an interdependent, healthy, regenerative world.
Our mission: The Student Sustainability Center is an accessible hub that empowers students to become intersectional sustainability leaders by providing experiential learning opportunities and resources.
Values are guiding principles and themes that describe why we join together as a team toward the departmental vision and mission.
Varied Levels of Engagement: We strive to create accessible, experiential learning opportunities for students at Portland State where they can engage in sustainability based on their interest level including the options to volunteer, participate as a leadership fellow, and/or be employed as a part-time staff member.
Community Oriented and Cause Driven: We orient our work around supporting the greater campus community’s sustainability needs from an intersectional lens. We recognize our role in strengthening mutually beneficial partnerships with centers outside of our own and work to grow our network of exchange and impact over time.
Intersectionality and Inclusivity: We work to center equity, cultural sustainability, intersectionality, and anti-racist practices in our work. We commit to reflexively examining our own programming and the work of the greater sustainability movement in dismantling harmful systems of oppression.
Responsibility to Accountability, Reflexivity, and Responsiveness: We hold ourselves accountable to the values that guide our purpose, actively seeking to assess and address issues within our program, and take measurable steps to improve them.
Sustainability Leadership: We empower students to identify as sustainability leaders in the PSU community and beyond, encouraging systems thinking and adaptive leadership through our offerings of educational growth opportunities.
Sustainability is an important part of PSU’s mission, and SSC makes sustainability accessible to students by their physical location, student focus and programs. Social justice and sustainability go hand-in-hand toward creating a valuable experience for our students and addressing global challenges. Cynthia Gomez, Executive Director of Cultural Resources Centers
All SSC programs and activities have been developed with support and feedback by student participants and the PSU community.
Growing up as a creative, close to nature, Laihha found her passion in all things green space design. She just received her Bachelor’s Degree in Geography from PSU with a focus on Sustainability, Water Resources and Permaculculture. She continues to be involved in the SSC as an alumni.
Serena grew up in the Willamette Valley and on the Oregon coast, driving her connection to place and passion for sustainability. Serena is pursuing her Masters in Public Affairs with a specialization in Global Leadership and Management, and a certificate in Postsecondary Adult and Continuing Education.
Cami grew up on the island of Kauai, as well as Alabama, Florida, and California for a short period of time before finding her way up to Portland. She is majoring in Psychology, pursuing an interest in working with children and families. Earth Care, People Care, and Fair Share guide her success.
Gianna is found her greatest love in nature, agriculture, and design through studying the creative work of friends and mentors. Her studies of ecosystem design throughout the world are continued. She is working on a Bachelor’s in Architecture with a double minor in sustainability and Italian Language
Nichole is a self proclaimed knower of useless facts, professional cryer, and perpetually tired. Raised in Portland, she fell in love with the wild spaces. Nichole is pursuing her Masters in Educational Leadership and Policy with a specialization in a specialization in Sustainability Education.
The Student Sustainability Center Advisory Board provides guidance as we implement our strategic plan. Members provide insight and feedback about the SSC’s programs and activities, major decisions, and budget allocations. They also advocate for the SSC throughout Portland State University.
Advisory meetings are convened once per quarter.
We partner with on-campus and community organizations on shared programs and initiatives. Our primary partners include the Student Community Engagement Center and the organizations that encompass Sustainability @ PSU (The Campus Sustainability Office, and the Institute for Sustainable Solutions).
Learn more about Sustainability at PSU in this video.
We partner with the Student Community Engagement Center (SCEC) on Days of Service and in utilizing the shared Hub space on campus.
We partner with Campus Rec through our Campus Representatives of the Green Council program (formerly known as the EcoReps).
We partner with the PSU Food Pantry in food security initiatives related to donations from our food pantry and campus gardens.
We partner with PSUEats through the Campus Representatives of the Green Council program (formerly known as the EcoReps).
Our office and many of our events are hosted in Smith Memorial Student Union.
The Institute for Sustainable Solutions matches the passion and expertise of PSU faculty and students with the experience and needs of community groups, government agencies, and businesses to develop practical solutions for more equitable, livable, sustainable cities and regions.
Campus Sustainability Office: The Campus Sustainability Office (CSO) works to reduce the environmental impact of Portland State's campus operations by facilitating collaboration, benchmarking sustainability performance, and aligning operations, policies.
We partner with the Greater Portland Sustainability Education Network (GPSEN) by supporting the College Network, collaborating with other colleges in the region.
We partner with The City Repair Project through participating in the Annual Village Building Convergence events.
We participate annually in the Ecohallenge offered by Ecochallenge.org (formerly the Northwest Earth Institute).
We partner with the Tillamook Forest Center by hosting field trips that allow students to explore their center and the surrounding forest.
We partner with Bridgetown Bee Supply, benefitting from their mentorship and support of our campus apiary.
We partner with the Portland Urban Beekeepers (PUB), benefitting from their mentorship and support of our campus apiary.