Through Lehigh’s Sustainable Office Program, which is a voluntary, self-guided program designed for faculty and staff to take the lead on promoting sustainable practices in the workplace, faculty and staff can identify opportunities for innovation and implement sustainable change. They can reduce their environmental footprint, be responsible stewards of university’s resources, contribute to Lehigh’s sustainability goals and commitments, and build a campus community for the 21st Century. Tied directly to Lehigh’s Sustainability Strategic Plan 2030, our goal is to certify 70% of Lehigh's staff and faculty by 2024.
What is the certification process?
Step 1: Registration
Complete the registration form. Once your registration is submitted, a member of the Sustainable Office team will contact you.
Step 2: Baseline Survey
Complete the baseline survey. A member of the Sustainable Office Program team will email you the baseline survey form for you to complete. You can view a PDF version of the baseline survey (see below) before you begin.
Step 3: Meeting
Meet with the Office of Sustainability's Sustainable Office Program team to go over your baseline survey, discuss office improvements, and determine next steps.
Step 4: Checklist of Actions
Complete the checklist of actions. A member of the Sustainable Office Program team will email you the checklist of actions form for you to complete. You can view a PDF version of the checklist of actions (see below) before you begin.
What are the certification levels?
Depending on the number of action items your office is able to complete on the Checklist of Actions, your office will receive bronze, silver, gold or platinum Sustainable Office Program certification!
Frequently Asked Questions
We define an “office” as a contiguous work area that shares common areas and resources. An entire department may constitute an office or there may be dozens of offices within one department. Offices big and small are welcome to participate! Please include part-time and full-time staff, students (including interns) and faculty. Your office should include kitchens, meeting rooms, storage rooms, and other commonly shared areas.
The Sustainable Office Program was created in the spring of 2015 to aid the university in achieving the sustainability goals outlined in the 2012 Sustainability Plan and then the Campus Sustainability Plan 2020. Now, the program works towards achieving the goals in Lehigh's Sustainability Strategic Plan 2030. The program is designed to engage faculty and staff on important topics, save money and resources, build a strong community, and ensure a sustainable future for our campus.
Raise awareness, educate, and provide measurable guidelines for reducing the impact of office operations
Conserve water, save energy, minimize waste, and save money
Further integrate sustainability into campus culture
Support Lehigh's Sustainability Strategic Plan 2030
Promote campus policies that support sustainability
Recognize and reward leadership in sustainability
- Fill out the Registration Form
- Complete and submit the Baseline Survey. A member of the Sustainable Office Program team will send this to you once you submit the Registration Form.
- Complete and submit the Checklist of Actions. A member of the Sustainable Office Program team will send this to you once you submit the Baseline Survey.
There are four levels in the Sustainable Office Program: bronze, silver, gold, and platinum. To achieve a level of certification, your office must complete the following number of items from the Checklist of Actions:
- Bronze: 40 actions
- Silver: 70 actions
- Gold: 100 actions
- Platinum: 130 actions
You can email firstname.lastname@example.org with any questions or schedule a meeting with a member of the Sustainable Office Program team.
The Baseline Survey is a basic audit of your office space. It asks questions specific to the employees in your office, as well as, the physical space and appliances used. It should not take more than 30-45 minutes to fill out.
To register for the program, fill out the Registration Form.
Yes, you can absolutely re-certify! To re-certify your office, contact the Office of Sustainability at email@example.com. A member of the Sustainable Office Program team will meet with you to discuss the re-certification process.
The Sustainable Office Program Representative is the contact between their office and the Office of Sustainability. They are in charge of filling out the Registration Form, setting up meeting(s), filling out the Baseline Survey, Checklist of Actions, and other basic responsibilities.
The Baseline Survey takes anywhere from 30-45 minutes to complete. The Checklist of Actions, being slightly longer, takes about 45-60 minutes.
No, the Sustainable Office Program is free.
Yes! When filling out the Checklist of Actions, your office can check off anything you currently do, or anything you are going to begin doing.
There are six categories in the Checklist of Actions that are aligned with the six focus areas of Lehigh's Sustainability Strategic Plan 2030:
Culture & Engagement
Health & Wellness