Monday, June 18, 2012

Johnson County Community College Sustainability

I recently went on a tour of Johnson County Community College in Overland Park, Kansas. The tour was led by staff members from the Center for Sustainability. I am very impressed at the community college system in Kansas, which seems to greatly differ from what I grew up with in Arizona. Here are some photographs of things I saw on the tour.

This is the large rain garden that helps filter the runoff from the numerous parking lots on campus. JCCC is a commuter school, which means that there is plenty of black asphalt surrounding the campus. I'm still not use to rain gardens, since they were infrequently used in Arizona. This garden was built with a combination of federal stimulus grants and funding from the campus sustainability fee. Students must pay a $1 per credit hour fee at JCCC, which raised nearly $400,000 in revenue a year for sustainability projects.

This is a sculpture on campus that was made by students from old tires. I think it is really interesting how art can be used to showcase sustainability in public spaces. 

This is an idea that I had discussed with some colleagues at AASHE 2011, but was unable to pursue at Arizona State University. JCCC has repurposed filing cabinets into special collection bins for electronic waste. Since many universities have a surplus of filing cabinets, this could be an affordable way to expand a special collections program. According to the staff at JCCC, the retrofit only took a few hours of labor.

Be sure to check out the album below for pictures of the campus farm and other sustainability features at Johnson County Community College.

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