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"Sustainability, in a broad sense, touches upon virtually all aspects of the research enterprise at Penn State and is a principal driver behind our most noteworthy and important research pursuits. "
Interim Vice President, Research

Green Teams Program

What is a Green Team?

Green Teams are groups of faculty, staff, and students volunteering to take specific actions to help their organization (college, department, building, etc.) operate in a more efficient, innovative, and healthy way. Typically, Green Teams focus on making their operations more sustainable through the easy to follow Green Paws Program and other initiatives unique to their departments. Currently, the University has 102 Green Teams, with 22 of them at the Commonwealth Campuses, operating in various departments.
The Sustainability Institute sponsors the Green Team program and supports it with information resources and training. What initiatives are these teams working on? Check out the success pages.
See the tabs above for more on forming your own Green Team, signing up for an orientation session, and locating a team in your unit. For more information contact Lydia Vandenbergh at (814) 863-4893.

BenefitsNew Kensington Composting Conference

The ability to work with co-workers to make positive change:

  • It's more effective (and more fun!) to work with others
  • Connection to over 100 Green Teams and over 850 members around Penn State
  • Bring recognition to your unit for having a Green Team
  • Invitation to quarterly Green Team lunches and special training sessions
  • Access to the best and latest information, resources, events and news available from the Sustainability Institute that can help you and your Green Team succeed.  Everyone on our list gets regular updates and announcements from our office.


Green Bag Lunch Series

Ready to connect with your building’s community and learn together about energy waste in your home, recycling and composting, sustainability and social justice? The Green Bag Lunch Series offers this opportunity with the following four presentations: 

October 20, 2014: “Making your home smarter: Energy efficiency with the NELC (National Energy Leadership Corps)" 
November 20, 2014: "Mastering möbius: The what’s and where’s of composting and recycling” 
January 14th, 2015: “Sustainability Lives Here” 
March, 2015 (date TBD): "Social justice and sustainability"

The first Green Bag Lunch is October 20, 2014:

“Making your home smarter: Energy efficiency with the NELC”
12-1 p.m. | via Adobe Connect
Penn State student Anthony Magliozzi
Hosted by The Smeal Green Team 

Green Teams -- use these planning and marketing materials below to help promote the Green Bag Lunch on Oct. 20.




How to Form a Green Team

  • Identify co-workers who would be interested in working on greening your area.Green Teamers enjoy a laugh at training
  • Contact Lydia Vandenbergh to set up an orientation meeting or sign up for any of the monthly sessions available through Adobe Connect or in person. The upcoming sessions are:
    • Wednesday, October 1st: Green Teams Orientation from 1-2 p.m. online via Adobe Connect. You must register by Thursday, September 25th to attend. 
  • Obtain a Letter of Support from the Leadership in your office
    • Getting support from those in leadership roles can boost morale and promote the credibility of your team. Ask your Office Head/Program Director to write a letter in support of the formation of your Green Team. Be sure to share the letter with your fellow Green Team members and mail or email a copy to Lydia Vandenbergh, 108 Land and Water Research Building.
    • You can use this draft letter as a tool to create your own personalized request for leadership support.
    • Check out this example letter written by Penn State Dubois' Chancellor supporting her Green Team's efforts.

  • Expand your team!
    • Invite more co-workers to join your team using this sample invite.
    • Include a copy of the letter of support from your supervisor along with the invitations to join the team.
    • You can also post this flyer somewhere in your office to market your team.
  • Complete the Green Team Registration Form. Officially registering can help us to help you!
  • Contact Lydia Vandenbergh to collaborate on organizing your first meeting.

Update Information

To ensure that we provide your Green Team with the most accurate and up-to-date information, we ask that you let us know if there are any changes to your existing team. Please use this form to update the following:

  • Green Team Name
  • Green Team Leader Information
  • Green Team Member Information
  • Green Team Contact Information

Green Team Resources

Green Teams are on the front lines of learning about sustainability, engaging others in that pursuit, and celebrating success. The Sustainability Institute has compiled a variety of tools to help teams build awareness about sustainability issues, inspire others to take an interest and change behaviors and how to communicate these ideas with others. Several of the ideas were created by teams and we will continue adding new resources as they are developed.

Download the PowerPoint from our 2014 end of the year luncheon.

Orientations and General Resources

Events & Orientation

2014 Green Bag Lunch Series

This new series of Green Bag Lunches makes it easy for Green Teams to connect with their Penn State community. The Sustainability Institute plans the presentations and provides teams with a planning guide, customizable flyers and emails to advertise the event, discussion guidelines, and an easy registration process. All the teams have to do is reserve a room with AV capability, recruit participants, and on the appointed day, enjoy learning and fellowship with your building mates.

Each presentation will run 25 to 30 minutes, with 10 - 15 minutes for questions, allowing 10 - 15 minutes for Green Teams to facilitate discussions within their groups. All presentations will be recorded and available on the Green Team Resources and Training webpage in case teams want to hold Green Bag lunches at another time.

There will be four presentations in this series and all the planning and marketing materials are below. Get your planning started with this guide.

October 20th: Penn State student Anthony Magliozzi will be presenting “Making your home smarter: Energy efficiency with the NELC” (National Energy Leadership Corp). The Smeal Green Team will be hosting this event, via Adobe Connect.  This presentation was initially held in August and was so well received that we were asked to repeat it.  Marketing materials and the registration link will be sent out on October 3rd.

November 20th: Al Matyasovsky will present “Mastering möbius: The what’s and where’s of composting and recycling.” Participants will learn 1) what goes where, 2) why is it important, 3) where can they find answers to questions and 4) what is the connection between möbius and recycling. This presentation is primarily applicable to the University Park community only.

January 14th: Jeremy Bean will present “Sustainability Lives Here.”

March, 2015 (Date TBD): The Educational Equity Green Team will present on the connection between social justice and sustainability. Specifics on this topic will be forthcoming.


During this one hour orientation, you will learn about the Green Teams program, its benefits, how to start a one in your unit, and share ideas with others. There is no cost for this training. We do ask that you register, whether or not you will attend in person so that we can know how many people to expect.
Upcoming Orientations:

Customized Orientations:

The above programs are presented by Lydia Vandenbergh of the Sustainability Institute. Customized orientations for groups of ten or more can be scheduled by contacting Lydia.

Branding Materials

Air Newsletter Archive

Air is our monthly newsletter filled with updates, events, green tips and news from our partners. 


Resources by Category


Behavior Change

Changing behaviors is the key step to prompting cultural transformation and you will find resources to learn about social marketing and how to use it to promote behavior change in this section. Tips and examples are included.

View category >


How can you communicate in a way that is effective? Check out the resources and tips in this section, including videos showing how to share messages in fun and dynamic ways.

View category >


Energy is a main focus in conservation, particularly in our ability to reduce our usage. Learn how to organize energy reduction campaigns, gauge energy use, and prepare your office for holiday breaks.

View category >


Reduce, Reuse, RECYCLE. In order to stop as much waste as possible from entering the landfill, we must understand how to recycle it. Learn about what services are available at Penn State and how to get others involved. 

View category >


For all you need to know about what sustainability is, how it applies to the larger world, and your role in it.

View category >


All the facts surrounding composting at Penn State, and how to do at home as well!

View category >

Existing Teams

Green Teams at Commonwealth Campuses

Green Team Contact
Admit-Recycle-Enroll (PS Fayette) Jason Broadwater | Sherry Scully
Altoona Sustainability Council Lisa Emili
Beaver Matt Grunstra
Behrend Ann Quinn
Berks Kim Berry | Mark Dawson
Brandywine Lisa Yerges | Dr. Susan Fredricks
Dobbins Green Team (PS Behrend) Cindi Pander
Earth Angels (PS Altoona) Michele Kennedy
E2 Team (PS Fayette) Tina Reed | Bill Gardner
Fayette Biomedical Building Michelle Henrish
Fayette Chancellor's Office Francis Achampong | Billie Jo Yuhaniak
Fayette Engineering Building David Meredith | John Timko
Great Valley Suzanne Cruit
Green York Annie Haines | Holly Gumke
Hammermill (PS Behrend) Dr. Michael Naber | Dr. C. Jay Amicangelo | Dr. Jason Bennett
Harrisburg Andrea Hoerner | Jason Zubler
Hazleton Sean McHale
IT Leadership Council Joanne Peca
Learn Green (PS Altoona) Paula Ford | Victoria Hesser
Mont Alto Kira Hamman
New Kensington Ruth Herstek
Penn State Altoona DUS Advising Green Sue Dodson | Jen Slusser | Jy Frank
Penn State DuBois Green Team Marcia Newell | Mary Walker
Penn State Green Allegheny Eric Lipsky | David Seitz
ShenanGO GREEN Tony Paglia | Greg Singer
Williams Building Green Team (PS Fayette) Paula Congelio | Chad Long

Green Teams at University Park

Green Team Contact

Administrative Units:

Admissions Kathryn Gaylord-Miles | Amy Pancoast
Boucke Anne Stover
Budget Office Mark Weaver | Jody Heckman | Paul Liadis
BURSAR: Better Understanding Recycling, Sustainability, and Resources Jessica Smith | Zack Foltz
Educational Equity Dara Sanoubane| Mike Brahosky
GORP Sarah Trentacoste | Sarah Bowser | Phil Frum | Sara Dries
Green Innovations- Investment Office Karen Hulett | Pam Nisewonger
Green Planners Ginny Hosterman | Ellen George
Green Riders Sarah Morrow | Jennifer Stewart
Office of Student Aid Karen Sampsel | Justin Conklin
Office of the President Green Team Jake DeSantis | Marissa Shamrock
Office of University Development Courtney Van Sky
Registrar's Office Kay Keith | Megan Graham
Research Accounting Katrina Walker | Cissy Reese
University Libraries Kimlyn Patishnock

Intercollegiate Athletics:

Athletics Tom Venturino

Student Affairs:

CAPS Mini Green Team Susanna Hummer | Lynne Gilham
Career Services Sara Becker
Center for Ethics and Religious Affairs Beth Bradley | Wolfgang Bruckner
HUB Green Team Heide Port | Mary Edgington
Student Affairs Sustainability Mary Edgington
University Health Services Doris Guanowsky 

Finance and Business:

Aux.&Bus.Serv. Marketing Office Monica Kling
Center for Workplace Learning and Performance Jennifer Clouser
Environmental, Health & Safety Kate Lumley-Sapanski | Lysa Holland | Maurine Claver
Green BJC Sarah Caterson
Hintz Building Sally Horn | Elaine Stella
Housing & Dining Services David Manos | Jo-Ann Marker
Office of Physical Plant Maddy Kantu | Derek Kalp
OPP D&C Jason Smith | Derek Leonard
Parking Office Jean Harris | Luke Anderson
Penn State Hospitality Herbert Moller
Purchasing Becky Fike

Outreach (UP)

Outreach Building Green Team Courtney Karmelita | Barb Taylor
Shaver's Creek Environmental Center Josh Potter
329 Building Green Team Leslie Demmert

Academic Colleges & Institutes:

Ag Admin Green Team Corinna Fisher | Catherine Murphy
Food Science Greenies Bob Lumley-Sapanski | Kim Ripka
Zero In (Ag Engineering) Heather Gall | Peggy Newel
Arts and Architecture
Center for Performing Arts  Shannon Bishop
Music Department Camille Selden
School of Architecture & Landscape Architecture Lisa Iulo
Smeal School of Business Monica Snyder
COMMunity Green Team Jane Agnelly | Brenda Johnson
Earth & Mineral Sciences
Dutton e-Education Institute Green Team Brandi Robinson | Sing Wong
MatSE Green Team Jenneth Layaou | Frank Driscoll
Simply EESI Green Linda Bell | Tracy Bernier
College of Education Peter Buckland
Civil & Environmental Engineering Deron Johnson | Amy Case
College of Engineering Marcella Fickes | Clark Colburn
SEDTAPP Program Andy Lau | Scott Pusey
Health and Human Development
BBH Green Team Lisa Grove | Joanne Foley-Defiore 
Ford Building Allen Carles | Beverly Fahr| Tracy Johnson
Henderson Green Ground Deb Houser | Sue Confer
Hort Woods Jennifer Hooven
Methodology Center Amanda Applegate | Tina Meyers
School of Hospitality Management Dave Cranage | Peter Nyheim
Information Sciences and Technology
College of Information Science & Technology Lisa Ammerman
IT@IST@PSU John Fulmer | Shannon Johnson
Liberal Arts
ANTHRecycles Betty Blair | Tim Ryan
Burrowes-Old Botany Green Team Sarah Denes | Jamie Frazell
Economics Green Team Georgine Mihalenko
Green Weavers (Weaver Building) Bryan McDonald | Leah Pawlicki
Labor and Employment Relations Green Team Jessica Steele | Jill Jensen
Oswald Green Team Kim Smith | Julie Horney
Psychology Department Green Team Janet Swim | Beth Laird
Sentencing Commission Carol Zeiss | Carrie Peters
Sparks Green Team Hannah Brukardt
Biochemistry and Molecular Biology Joyce Greslick
Biology Stephanie Gookin 
Chemistry Department Larry Johns |  Theresa Mellott
Physical Sciences Laurie Dasher
Thomas Green Team Cassie Johnstonbaugh | Robert Holden
Land and Water Green Team Betsy Grgurich
Gregarious Green Lions Lisa O'Hara | Margaret Johnstonbaugh
The Huck Green Team Terrie Young | Sharon Hand


University Park Green Teams 76
Commonwealth Campuses Green Teams 26
Total Penn State Green Teams 102