World Campus Sustainability Club hits second anniversary

Marchella Verdi
November 28, 2018

UNIVERSITY PARK, Pa. — Penn State World Campus is widely acknowledged to offer students a world-class education. Perhaps less well-recognized is that it can offer students a rich student life experience, too. 

Created by the Outreach and Online Education's Green Team in December 2016, the World Campus Sustainability Club is marking its second anniversary helping to connect Penn State World Campus students to the Penn State family, while empowering them to put their sustainability education into action around the world. 

Club members attended the first Penn State World Campus Student Leadership Conference earlier this fall to share both their experiences engaging in online student life and how their sustainability efforts help them to develop valuable team building, communication and leadership skills. 

Like any student club’s secretary, World Campus student Justin Bowen takes notes and tracks club activities. But with a completely online membership, Bowen acknowledged that there are also unique elements to the club’s operation. Rather than solely working together on one project, team members periodically meet online to discuss ways to bring awareness of sustainability to their own hometowns through individual projects.

Bowen, a second-year student in the Energy and Sustainability Policy bachelor's degree program who lives in Michigan, long has had a passion for the environment and was looking to become a part of a group that shared similar interests. 

“[The World Campus Sustainability Club] actually inspired me to branch out into my community and look for other similar networking opportunities,” Bowen said. “I'm now working with a local sustainability club [in Michigan] to help them drum up engagement from our local community so that we can act as a resource for our local legislators.”  

Bowen said he plans on remaining engaged in the club because it has provided him with the opportunity to meet many people with similar interests, to learn time management, to learn how to delegate duties and to be a more impactful communicator. 

Penn State’s Outreach and Online Education Green Team is a group of staff who volunteer their time to help peers develop an understanding of sustainability concepts and to create opportunities to implement these concepts in their unit’s operations. The Outreach team is one of many Green Teams found within several operational units at all 24 Penn State campuses who are focusing on nurturing a new way of thinking about our collective and long-term social, environmental and economic impacts.

In particular, the Outreach Green Team has established as part of its strategic mission a goal of “planting the seeds” about sustainability — raising awareness through planned educational activities, long-term dialogue and leading by example. With the creation of the World Campus Sustainability Club, they have extended this sustainability education mission to World Campus students, sharing their passion and helping students spread their sustainability impacts globally.

Last Updated September 20, 2019