What is a Green Team?
Green Teams are groups of faculty, staff, and students volunteering to engage and educate their peers 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 50 Green Teams operating in various colleges and units and ten of them at the Commonwealth Campuses. This network of change agents work with the Colleges' Sustainability Councils, which have been formed to strategically advance the University's sustainability goals, matching the work to the College's unique mission.
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, learning resources, and locating a team in your unit. For more information contact Lydia Vandenbergh at (814) 863-4893.
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 50 Green Teams
- Bring recognition to your unit for having a Green Team
- Invitation to annual 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 via our AIR Newsletter for Green Teams specifically.
How to Form a Green Team
- Identify co-workers who would be interested in working on greening your area.
- Contact Lydia Vandenbergh to set up an orientation meeting or sign up for any of the monthly Orientation sessions available through the Learning Resource Network.
- 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.
- 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.
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.
Orientations and General Resources
Orientations and Trainings
Integrating Sustainability into your Goals and Competencies for PSU Performance Management (SUS-008)
Take this one-hour workshop to learn how to incorporate sustainability-related goals into your professional development planning. Participants will be guided through the goal development process, aligning personal goals with those of their unit’s and the University’s Strategic Plan priorities. With the upcoming Performance Management goal setting scheduled for June 1st to August 31st, this workshop will make the process easy.
Dates: Check the Learning Resource Network for upcoming dates. If you don't see a date and want the training, please contact Lydia Vandenbergh.
Green Team Orientations
During this one-hour orientation, you will learn about the Green Teams program, its benefits and how to start 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. Sessions are offered almost every month via Adobe Connect, and some of them are also available in person. The full roster of dates and times and registration is available online.
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.
Air Newsletter Archive
Air is our monthly newsletter filled with updates, events, green tips and news from our partners.
- October 2020
- September 2020
- August 2020
- July 2020
- June 2020
- April 2020
- March 2020
- February 2020
- January 2020
- December 2019
- November 2019
- October 2019
- September 2019
- August 2019
- July 2019
- June 2019
- May 2019
- April 2019
- March 2019
- February 2019
- January 2019
- December 2018
- November 2018
- September/October 2018
- August 2018
Resources by Category
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.
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.
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.
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.
Green Teams at Commonwealth Campuses
|Abington Environmental Conservation Objective (ECO)||Karley Feather|
|Abington Green Team||Shelly Boyd Grinar|
|Altoona DUS Advising Green||Joy Frank|
|Altoona Sustainability Council||Lisa Emili|
|Behrend Sustainability Committee||Sherri Mason|
|DEVinitely Green Hershey||Samantha Moore|
|Fayette Chancellor's Office||Billie Jo Yuhaniak|
|Fayette Engineering Building||David Meredith|
|Great Valley||Suzanne Cruit | Eric Stern|
|Greener Allegheny||Eric Lipsky|
|Lehigh Valley||Denise Ogden|
|Mont Alto Sustainability Committee||Craig Houghton|
|New Kensington||Ruth Herstek|
|ShenanGO GREEN||Tony Paglia | Tammy D'Artenay|
Green Teams at University Park
|BURSAR: Better Understanding Recycling, Sustainability, and Resources||Dennis Peterman | Kelley McCord|
|Educational Equity||Rebecca Westhoff|
|Values in Action (VIA) Team||JIm Taylor|
|Green Innovations - Investment Office||Karen Hammel | Pam Nisewonger|
|Office of Student Aid||Lisa Homan|
|Office of the President Green Team||Justin Lugin | Marissa Shamrock | Tara Cassick|
|Office of the University Registrar||Julie Conner|
|Research Accounting||Cissy Reese|
|University Libraries||Harlan Ritchey|
|CAPS Mini Green Team||Susanna Hummer|
|Center for Spiritual and Ethical Development||Rachel Galloway|
|HUB Green Team||Mary Edgington|
|Student Affairs Sustainability||Mary Edgington|
|University Health Services||Michel e Brown|
Finance and Business:
|Housing||Dave Manos | John Duncan|
|Office of Physical Plant||Jason Smith | Derek Leonard|
|Parking Office/ Tranportation||Cecily Zhu|
|Residential Dining||Jim Meinecke|
|Outreach Building Green Team||Michele Chernega | Yana Irwin|
|Shaver's Creek Environmental Center|
Academic Colleges & Institutes:
|Ag Admin Green Team||Corinna Fisher|
|Zero In (Ag Engineering)||Tom Richard|
|Arts and Architecture|
|School of Architecture & Landscape Architecture|
|COMMunity Green Team||Brenda Johnson|
|Division of Undergraduate Studies|
|DUS Green Team|
|Earth & Mineral Sciences|
|Dutton e-Education Institute Green Team||Brandi Robinson | Sing Wong|
|MatSE Green Team||Laura Tetrault | Eric Sagmuller|
|College of Education||Bonnie Richardson|
Smells Like Green Spirit
|Civil & Environmental Engineering||David Jones|
|Health and Human Development|
|Hort Woods||Jennifer Hooven|
|Shaver's Creek Environmental Center||Brian Sedgwick|
|Information Sciences and Technology|
|IST Building Green Team||Lisa Crownover|
|College of Liberal Arts Sustainability Council||Janet Swim|
|Burrowes - Old Botany Green Team||Nicole Force|
|Economics Green Team||Georgine Mihalenko|
|Green Weavers (Weaver Building)||Bryan McDonald|
|Labor and Employment Relations Green Team||Lisa Pierson|
|Oswald Green Team||Kim Smith|
|Psychology Department Green Team||Nick Pearson|
|Pond Lab Green Team|
|Sparks Green Team||Ryan Fisher|
|Willard Green Team||Kathy Rumbaugh | Tracey Jackson|
|Nursing Simulation Lab||Darlene Clark | Kristal Hockenberry | Janet Knott|
|Chemistry Department||Russel Saieva|
|Land and Water Green Team|
|The Huck Green Team||Jean Pierce|
|University Park Green Teams||45|
|Commonwealth Campuses Green Teams||20|
|Total Penn State Green Teams||65|