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Office of Economic Engagement Becomes a Gold-Certified Sustainable Office!

The Office of Sustainability recently awarded the Office of Economic Engagement (OEE) a gold Sustainable Office Program certification! The Sustainable Office Program is a voluntary, self-guided program designed for staff to take the lead on promoting environmental practices in the workplace. By taking action in a variety of topic areas, offices like the Office of Economic Engagement can reduce their environmental footprint, be responsible stewards of university’s resources, and contribute to Lehigh’s sustainability goals and commitments.

A gold certification indicates that the office has completed over 90 of the sustainable office actions. These actions are categorized by ‘Participation & Engagement,’ ‘Climate & Energy,’ ‘Food & Dining,’ ‘Purchasing,’ ‘Community Building & Social Equity,’ ‘Transportation,’ ‘Waste,’ Water,’ and ‘Events & Meetings.’ In order for a department or office to be certified, they must complete actions in each of these categories. Some of the actions that the OEE took to reduce their environmental footprint included: distributing office information electronically rather than in paper form, encouraging another office to join the sustainable office program, not offering bottled water in the office, and storing forms and faxes electronically.

Each certified office appoints a Sustainable Office Representative. Mary Wagner, the representative for the Office of Economic Engagement, has proven to be very driven to help integrate sustainability efforts into her office. Mary has even provided feedback to our office to help improve the program. “Being a part of the sustainability team is a nice thing.  We appreciate the recognition,” she said.  

The Sustainable Office Program was launched in the Spring of 2015.  It  now has certified three offices and there are multiple offices in the certification process. There is visible environmental consciousness on the Lehigh campus, as exhibited here by the success of this program. As the Sustainability Program Manager, I am very optimistic about the future of the Sustainable Office Program. I encourage the Office of Economic Engagement to celebrate the good news by sharing their accomplishments online and with coworkers! I look forward to seeing more offices and departments joining the program.

Let us know your office is interested in the program by filling out the registration form.  A Sustainable Office team member will further discuss the program with your office before beginning.