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STATE ENGAGE SCAVENGER HUNT: Find two ways you can be involved with sustainability on campus.


Our office seeks to empower members of the ISU community to build a resilient community of Sycamores. We work to provide sustainability initiatives and projects across campus and the community with dynamic collaborative partners. This also includes supporting and uplifting other partner’s initiatives. We want to integrate sustainability into operations, curriculum, co-curriculum, research, and engagement with the ISU community.


We attempt to accomplish this by providing a central location for faculty, staff, students, and community to find resources and collaboration for integrating sustainability into their practices and policies. We create, implement, and manage innovative programs and events in collaboration with others. We establish metrics and track institutional sustainability performance. Finally, we want to share the sustainability stories that happen within this community

About US


An image of fall trees and grass underneath with a person on a bicycle riding through the center of the picture

Our Mission

The Office of Sustainability seeks to promote environmental responsibility and economic vitality, while fostering social equity, on campus and in the surrounding communities. The office provides opportunities for all students and community members, regardless of degree or field of work, to improve their understanding of how they can advance sustainability in the modern world.


Our Values

Social Equity
Environmental Responsibility
Economic Vitality


Our Division

The Office of Sustainability is part of the Divison of University Engagement at ISU. The Divison of University Engagement connects community and university partners to address the most pressing challenges in the communities we serve, prepare ISU students for rewarding careers and civic leadership, and support lifelong learning throughout west-central Indiana.

The Division of University Engagement at Indiana State University has a commitment to inclusion. We provide a welcoming and respectful environment where inclusivity puts diversity into action. As members of the University community, we are committed to meaningful intercultural relationships within our University and with our community partners. We believe that the development of our students, faculty, and staff are best supported in a climate that honors diverse experiences and perspectives.

Accessibility information: The Office of Sustainability is a single level building structure with an elevated front porch and back deck. Surrounding sidewalks are intact and there are ramp entrances to the sidewalk and office porch. The ISU Community Garden has some concrete pathways, but is mostly wood chip paths. There are occassional loud sounds from nearby train tracks and passing traffic. 


The Garden

red flower on the right with some pink ones intermixed

The Indiana State University Community Garden was started in 2008 as a community engagement effort to bring various groups that were interested in encouraging people to grow their own fresh food. Representatives from ISU, Catholic Charities, The White Violet Center for Eco-Justice, and Purdue Extension were brought together by request of President Benjamin and initiated the establishment of the community garden. Originally, the ISU Community Garden was operated through the Center for Community Engagement. The community garden became part of the Office of Sustainability when it was established in 2012.

Unbounded Possibilities

An image of two people in a kayak in the Wabashikii with a logo for unbounded possibilities on teh left side of the image

The Office of Sustainability was one of eight programs established through the Unbounded Possibilities initiative in 2012. Unbounded Possibilities wanted programs that could boost community engagement and experiential learning, set up additional investment in those existing programs, and find new promising outlets to finance. Under the original Institute for Community Sustainability name, the office moved into the Garden House and began implementing sustainability initiatives.


Yellow house with solar panels on the right side of the roof

In 2018, the Office of Sustainability was named and added a 6.6 watt roof mounted solar array that provides more than enough power for the entire Garden House. The Garden House is an exemplar of sustainability. The office space is always available as a meeting and gathering space for the community and campus. Contact us if you are interested in using the space. The interior of the house can fit 20 people, there are accessible walkways and entrances, and the office is equipped with a full kitchen and projector equipment.

Overview of campus with green trees and visible buildings in the background. The logo for the office of sustainability is in the top left corner and the circular mark is in the bottom right.

We strive to collaborate with as many partners as possible to create experiential learning for students at Indiana State and to integrate sustainability into all facets of campus. Students are consistently working with us to apply course learning and material. Indiana State University students are some of the most driven and capable students in Indiana. We want to create opportunities for our awesome students to contribute to sustainability efforts and knowledge at ISU and in the greater Indiana community. There are multiple ways for students to become involved such as student organizations, course integration, and other opportunities. 


Sustainability Fellows

The Sustainability Fellows program encourages ISU staff + faculty interested in building a sustainability culture at ISU to join. Through the program, folks will meet likeminded people and learn about campus sustainability issues here at ISU. It is expected that Sustainability Fellows will take what they learn through the program back to their individual offices and help others learn about campus sustainability. it is also expected that Fellows attempt to progressively integrate sustainability practices and behaviors in their indivdual office culture. 

If interested in becoming a Fellow or would like more information, please reach out to

Participant Requirements

  • Attend educational orientation session
  • Attend at least two Lunch 'N Learns during each semester
  • Submit Sustainable Spaces certification

Participant Benefits

Sustainability Fellows will gain (1) a sustainability network at ISU, (2) direct access to campus sustainability information, and (3) a certification award for becoming a Fellow.

Student Sustainability Coalition & Organizations

Student Voices in Sustainability at ISU

The Student Sustainability Coalition (SSC) is a representative group of student organizations, student government association representatives, and other individual student representatives that all play a role in furthering sustainability through their projects, initiatives, and efforts. The SSC meets bi-weekly to discuss campus sustainability issues and their organizations current projects. The SSC facilitates collaboration between the representatives and collectively works towards improving sustainability at ISU. 

Member-organizations of SSC gain the opportunity to receive a mini-grant for projects and initiatives related to sustainability. The projects and initiatives funded are one-time and must be related to one of the UN Sustainable Development Goals

The member-organizations are listed here.

Student Government Association (SGA), Residence Hall Association (RHA), Commuter Services, International Student Leadership Council (ISLC), SEAC, Sustainable Agriculture Leaders (SAL), Students of Color Environmental Collective (SCEC), Environmental Science Club

If you have any questions about the SSC or would like to join, please contact 

Student Organizations

Indiana State University offers an array of sustainability-focused student organizations. We have listed the main organizations that focus on implementing sustainability projects and initiatives and educating others about sustainability. However, there are many more student organizations that help advance sustainability initiatives at ISU. 

If you don't see a student organization that fits exactly what you want to do, please reach out to us. We are happy to help students start organizations that help advance sustainability in whatever way we can. We are actively looking to support students in creating outdoor recreation, urban agriculture, pollinator alliance, and Green Greeks.

SEAC (Sycamore Environmental Action Club)

circle logo for SEACThe Sycamore Environmental Action Club (SEAC) is a student-led organization that is dedicated to cultivating environmental awareness, promoting environmental education, and fostering environmental leadership through experiential and service learning activities.



STATE Environmental Science Club

black and white circle photo of a mountain with the words Environmental Science Club surrounding itThe Environmental Science Club educates and exposes members to experiences in fields of environmental science. They also educate the local public through community outreach about the environment and processes involved. They are involved in many service opportunities the community and education opportunities on campus. 



Students of Color Environmental Collective

green trees with SCEC The Students of Color Environmental Collective is an organization started by and for students of color that are passionate about sustaining the Earth. This club focuses on the intersection of identities and how environmental injustices impact the lives and safety of humans and the Earth. They focus on exploring issues of sustainability and how they can influence the campus community.




red background, fist outline in the middle with a print filling it that is an Earth imageryLet Us Live is an organization associated with the Greater Terre Haute NAACP region to educate and advocate for environmental justice in the community. Formed through an environmental justice committee, this organization has ties to ISU members and the community. Follow their facebook page and instagram.



Sustainable Agriculture Leaders (SAL)

Sustainable Agriculture Leaders logoSustainable Agriculture Leaders (SAL) is a student-led organization dedicated to growing agriculture in sustainable ways by partnering with the ISU Community Garden and Sycamore Food Forest. They want to raise awareness of food insecurity in our community at ISU and in Terre Haute and address it by directly donating produce. 


An overview image of the quad during fall with the Eco Reps wordmark in the lower left corner

Eco-Reps is a peer-to-peer educator program where students living in the residence halls can learn together about sustainability and implement sustainable programming and initiatives within the residence halls. This partnership with Residential Life allows students a unique opportunity to work with their peers and help encourage sustainable practices in the halls. Eco Reps will take a second 8 week course together during fall semester to learn about sustainability and programs they can implement. Then spring semester students will take a one credit course together where they will start implementing sustainable programs and initiatives in their residence halls. Students in any degree or field of study are encouraged to participate! Sustainability impacts us all and can be part of any field. 

The Eco-Reps will have a one-credit course during the fall and spring semester where they will learn about sustainability, have special guests, attend sustainable field trips, and plan events and projects with their fellow Eco-Reps. The program offers leadership opportunities during the academic year while in the program and offers continued leadership opportunities afterwards. The 2020-21 Eco-Reps Guidebook offers an overview of sustainability.
Group of seven students standing in a side-by-side line with office of sustainability t-shirts on
The 2019-2020 Eco-Reps decided to implement a composting facility on campus for their project of the year. The 2020-2021 Eco Reps piloted a personal composting program in Pickerl Hall. This involved deciding what type of composting to implement, people to involve, and various other experiences they would not have had without this program. This involved working with Residential Life and the Honors College to implement. This work will continue with the 2021-22 Eco Reps cohort.
Image on the left is of two students sitting at a table holding individual composting totes and a side beside them that says compost tote pick up. The right image is of a compost tote on the ground with a sticker that says blue is greener
If you are interested in joining this living learning community, you will need to fill out the application. If you have any questions about the program or would like to know more before applying, please reach out to We look forward to hearing from you!


Internships & Volunteers

Sustainability Internships

The Office of Sustainability hosts ISU students, high school students, and college students from other institutions to work with us through internships. These are not formal internship opportunities, because we do not have the capacity to offer structured learning experiences or financial compensation. These are offered due to the high volume of interest we get from students. However, many of the students that get involved through these informal internships have completed projects they can list on their resume. If you are interested in project-based and self-directed internships centered on sustainability for the campus or the community, send us an email.

If you want to get involved with a project for a course you have you should also reach out. Many students get involved for this specific reason.


The Office of Sustainability has volunteer opportunities through out most of the year. If you have required volunteer hours, group volunteer activities, or simply want to volunteer then you should contact us. We always need volunteer help for two main programs (1) Sustainability Month and (2) Earth Week. In addition to these, we always have things to do in the ISU Community Garden and Sycamore Food Forest.

Sycamore Service Saturday

The Center for Community Engagement (CCE) hosts Sycamore Service Saturdays throughout the year. The ISU Community Garden is a location for most of these events. if our volunteer event does not work for you, please view CCE's other events.

Bluestem Internship

Bluestem Internship Program

Students at a table in front of the community garden

The Bluestem Internship Program is a hands-on learning internship program where students will work with faculty, staff, and community members to connect horticulture and urban agriculture with sustainability, cultural diversity, and social justice. The student interns will work to develop and plant a heritage garden while centering cultural narratives and meaning to horticulture and urban agriculture. The program addresses food deserts and food apartheid within the community by growing food that is donated directly to community members in need. The program is centered on providing an opportunity for students historically barred or removed from agriculture spaces due to systemic oppression and racist ideologies. 

The program runs from May - July. All internships are PAID

Applications for interested students will open February 1st and stay open until mid-March. All applicants will be considered for the internship program, but spots are limited to seven students due to available space in the garden. For more information about the program and its structure please visit our program brochure.

Intern Responsibilities
  • Attend and participate in weekly course meetings and complete all assignments
  • Maintain a shared garden plot and adhere to all ISU Community Garden policies, with approximately 30% of produce yield going to donations
  • Assist in Sycamore Food Forest operations and harvest weekly by signing up for designated shifts and responsibilities
  • Attend and participate in weekly field trips, site visits, community assistance opportunities, and more
Program Goals
  1. Establish a learning community for environmental justice at Indiana State University that propels action towards addressing injustices with and for the community.
  2. Providing access and information for local communities in a direct approach.
  3. Work within community to begin dismantling barriers fo rhistorically oppressed and discriminated against folks to enter agricultural spaces.


Overview of campus with green trees and visible buildings in the background. The logo for the office of sustainability is in the top left corner and the circular mark is in the bottom right.

We strive to collaborate with as many campus and community partners to provide sustainability programs and initiatives. On campus we want to integrate sustainability into the curriculum by partnering with academic affairs to create dynamic experiential learning opportunities and sustainability literacy. We want to integrate sustainability into the campus culture by partnering with and supporting other campus departments in sustainability projects and programming.

The sustainability movement is built upon the foundation of a strong community. We want to work with and support other community members and organizations in sustainability programming and culture building. 

Campus Sustainability Month

Overview of campus from the quad


Campus Sustainability Month is a nationwide celebration of sustainability on college campuses. Supported through the national AASHE organization, the purpose of this event is to emphasize sustainability. We intend to have programming and opportunities for all ISU community members to learn about sustainability on campus, in the community, and in their potential careers.

If you would like to host or collaborate on an event for Campus Sustainability Month, please reach out to

Our list of 2022 events is coming soon!

Earth Day

Drone photo of the quad

Earth Day is a national celebration of the land that we collectively inhabit and its purpose is to recognize our impact on the land. ISU has celebrated Earth Day for the past ten years with a large gathering of students, staff, faculty, and community members. This celebration has expanded beyond the one-day event into a week long celebration with multiple events. We work with many campus and community partners to put on these events and have a breadth of sustainability experiences during the week.

Earth Week has programs and activities that celebrate and provide education about sustainability centered on the wellbeing of our society, economy, and planet. Our programming is centered on the three components of sustainability - social, environmental, economic - and the interconnected systems that impact healthy and sustainable communities. We also want to highlight and uplift campus and community events that focus on the wellbeing of our society, economy, and planet.


You can find examples of previous events from 2021 here.

If your organization or department would like to participate in any events or would like to put on your own events and have support from our office, please contact the Office of Sustainability -

Taboo Topics

Taboo Topics is a programming series centered on facilitating dialogue about topics people often avoid having conversations about. Multicultural Services & Programs, Honors College, and our office work to provide three of these events every semester. Each Taboo Topics event invites a speaker, panel, or other educational activity during the first half and then engaging conversation around the topic presented happens during the second half.

Fall 2021
  • October - People's Parks & Justice with Dr. Kera Lovell (Recorded Zoom) - People's Parks are common around the United States, in fact Bloomington, IN has one. What is not common is the knowledge and conversation about justice movements that underlie the creation of these parks. From racial justice, to environmental justice, to current housing justice issues these parks are spaces for radical movements. Join us to learn about the history of these parks and join in conversation about what can be done.

  • November - CANCELED
Spring 2022
  • February - Food Justice in our Communities - (Recorded Zoom) Food justice is a perspective that the food system needs to provide equitable access to nutritious and fresh food and that this is a human right. In a discussion with Lauren Baines the director of Student Health Promotions, Rev. Dawn Black of United Campus Ministries, and Polina Kaniuka, a PhD student, we talk about the various injustices in our food system and how folks can get involved in making a more sustainable system.
  • March - Representation Matters - During the month of Women's History Month and Disability Awareness Month, we are going to have a discussion about how representation matters in all aspects from media to education to business and more.
  • April - Men & Masculinities - A conversation and workshop around toxic masculinity, masculinities in our communities, and how we all enact these behaviors.

Sustainable Spaces

Sustainable Spaces

Building Sustainable Spaces at ISU is important to helping our institution uphold its commitment to sustainability and reducing our greenhouse gas emissions. This program is intended to be a departmental level reporting tool that is avaialble for general office guidelines. It is based off a national metric that many other institutions across the US are utilizing. 


The Sustainable Spaces Program helps offices:

1. Determine how sustainable they're operational behaviors and actions are in a clear metric
2. Identify clear and actionable ways to improve their sustainability operations
3. Get recognition for the work they are already doing and working towards


Any member of the institution can participate in this program. All it takes is a physical space on campus that can be defined as an "office". Offices can be an individual enclosed office, a small group, or an entire department. Members of any ISU office can enroll their office in the program, but direct support from the responsible individuals for oversight should be sought.

How to Join

Each office is responsible for identifying a point person to complete the certification. The point person will complete the certification checklist, which is an easy-to-use excel spreadsheet. Once the checklist is complete, you will send it to the Sustainability Coordinator. They will contact you to talk about some of the items on the certification and ensure that items are verified. Once all items have been verified, your office will be included in the reported offices and receive a certification seal.

Maintaining Membership

To remain in the Sustainable Spaces Program, offices should re-certify every year on the anniversary of their certification. This is through an update of the certification checklist. 


If you would like to learn more about the Sustainable Spaces Program or have questions about the certification process, please contact the Office of Sustainability.

Lunch 'N Learns

The Office of Sustainability puts on monthly professional development workshops for all at ISU. The Lunch 'N Learns are meant to provide education and conversation about campus sustainability issues here at ISU. These workshop sessions build a sustainability network across ISU and intend to spur conversation outside this space about sustainability.

If you would like more information about Lunch 'N Learns, please reach out to the Office of Sustainability

Bee Campus USA

Indiana State University became the 60th campus in the USA to become Bee USA Campus Certified. Bee Campus USA fosters ongoing dialogue to raise awareness of the role pollinators play in our communities and what each of us can do to provide them with healthy habitat. The Bee Campus USA program endorses a set of commitments, defined in an application, for creating sustainable habitats for pollinators, which are vital to feeding the planet. Katlin Childress 19’ was the driving force behind our certification. One of the responsibilities of this certification is the maintenance of a pollinator committee. If you are interested in being a part of the committee, please contact

Campus Race to Zero Waste

Man sorting recyclable commodities with safety glasses and gloves, and the Campus Race to Zero Waste logo

For a 12th time, ISU is participating in Campus Race to Zero Waste. Campus Race to Zero Waste is an annual recycling competition that takes place in the spring. The purpose for the competition among hundreds of universities across the United States and Canada is to increase recycling rates on campus and reduce our waste.

Two students talking to a gardener

Sustainability happens with collective and community power. Information and resources have been commodified in society, and we are attempting to de-commodify sustainability information by providing resources.

Here are a collection of community and nation-wide resources that help our sustainability work and can help the community. We have included organizations and offices on campus and in the community that we work with and use all the time to uplift the sustainability movement. If you are still not able to find the resources you need, please contact us.  

National Organizations

Advancing Sustainability in Higher Education (AASHE)

association for the advancement of sustainability in higher education logoAASHE empowers higher education faculty, administrators, staff and students to be effective change agents and drivers of sustainability innovation. They work with and for higher education to ensure that our future leaders are motivated and equipped to solve sustainability challenges.


Post Landfill Action Network (PLAN)

post landfill action network logoPLAN helps students launch self-sustaining programs that fight the cycle of campus waste. ISU has been a member institution of PLAN since 2018. PLAN has multiple resources for students to begin their own initiatives and have campus representatives to talk to.

Sierra Club

sierra club logoThe Sierra Club is a grassroots environmental organization in the US. They have a national community of volunteers, advocates, and grassroots activists who show up when and where it counts.

Local Organizations


leaves and reTHinkreTHink educates, supports, and encourages the citizens and business of the Wabash Valley to reduce waste and live a healthier, more sustainable life. reTHink has gardens in Ryves neighborhood that provide fresh produce to the community. They also have a composting program that you can opt-into.

TREES Inc.                                               

green tree TREES incTREES Inc. is a local non-profit environmental volunteer group founded in 1990 to encourage the planting of trees in Terre Haute and Vigo County.



Earth Charter Indiana

Indiana outline and Earth Charter IndianaEarth Charter focuses on intergenerational action and education in the face of the climate crisis. They have many resources on their website and through their programs. Earth Charter also has many volunteer opportunities and programs for people in Indiana.

Wabash Valley Art Spaces

wabash valley art spaces logoArts Spaces provides public art and the design of public places to enhance economic growth, enrich cultural experiences and build a legacy for future generations.


Undergraduate Major Programs

Geography and Sustainability

Prepares students for careers in areas such as environmental consulting, emergency management planning, climatology, economic development, global studies, data management, land use planning, and environmental protection

Applied Health Sciences (Public Health option)

Provides a solid foundation and background in public health issues, giving you training in the development of solutions designed to improve and maintain the well-being of the public and their communities

Environmental Geoscience

Prepares students for careers in non-profit organizations, government offices, and private companies engaged in environmental management and assessment

Undergraduate Minor Programs


Allows students to explore the nature and impact of human-environment interactions as a means to inform current and future planning needs for environmental sustainability

Social Welfare and Justice

Provides an introduction to the fields of social welfare in the US, an examination of the systems in place, and an understanding of the relationships between social welfare fields and race, social class, gender, sexuality, and other related characteristics

Graduate Programs

Geography and Sustainability

The Accelerated Geography and Sustainability is a flexible, interdisciplinary degree that offers graduate students excellent opportunities to develop professional skills in spatial analysis, geography, and sustainability

Recycling Center

The ISU Recycle Center opened in May of 1990. It started as an endeavor to reduce landfill costs and to make a positive influence on our environment.

The center has turned into a community recycling center and an educational center to promote sustainability and recycling throughout the university, Terre Haute, Vigo County, and the state of Indiana. The center is drop-off only and requires separation of commodities. Visit their webpage for more information.


Terre Haute City Bus

All ISU students, staff, and faculty with a valid ISU ID card can ride the Terre Haute city bus for free. ISU has up-to-date maps and bus times located on their website and directs you to the trip planner application. ISU members who need modifications or accommodations can call 812-235-0109 to make requests at least the day before the trip.

Environmental Justice Toolkit

The Office of Sustainability is providing these resources on environmental justice (EJ) not only for your personal education, but to bring awareness as well. We have listed books, podcasts, articles, and more to help expand your knowledge. Feel free to access the rest of the resource library using this link.

Environmental Racism: "racial discrimination in environmental policy making and hte enforcement of regulations and laws, the deliberate targeting of people of color communities for toxic waste facilities, the official sanctioning of the life threatening presence of poisons and pollutants in our communities, and the history of excluding people of color from leadership in the environmental movement" provided by Reverend Benjamin Chavis



Confronting Environmental Racism: Voices form the Grassroots by Robert D. Bullard

"The connection between racism and environmental quality is increasingly visible. People of color in urban and rural areas are the most likely victims of industrial dumping, toxic landfills, uranium mining, and dangerous waste incinerators. This groundbreaking anthology grows out of the National People of Color Environmental Leadership Summit and brings together leading scholars, environmental leaders, and social justice activists of the emerging environmental justice movement"

The Story of Stuff by Annie Leonard

"Americans have way too much stuff, and way too much of it is toxic". In this book, Leonard describes the issues of overconsumption and explores the source materials, their life spans, and finally their disposal. With this book she aism to transform the way we think and act.

As Long as Grass Grows: The Indigenous Fight for Environmental Justice, from Colonization to Standing Rock by Dina Gillo-Whitaker

Treaties, speeches, and many other documents in the United States have stated "for as long as grass grows and waters run" indigenous people would be able to hold onto "their lands undisturbed by settlers". Dina Gillo-Whitaker explores "Indigenized environmental justice" through the history of treaty violations, the struggle for basic necessities, and the protection of sacred sites.



How bad is climate change now?

Dangerous new hot zones are spreading around the world

Environmental Racisim is Killing Black Communities in Louisiana

Indiana utilities move away from coal despite legislature's efforts

Environmental Justice & Environmental Racism



Intersectional Environmentalist


Midwest Environmental Justice Network

Midwest Environmental Advocates

Hoosier Environmental Council

Climate Justice Alliance

Environmental Justice Foundation



True North (2018) by John Iadarola and Chavala Madlena

Reporting how communities and ecosystems are being affected by the Arctic.

An Inconvenient Truth (2006) by Davis Guggenheim

Raises awareness about the climate change and the issues it brings

Before the Flood (2016)

Features many high-profile indivdiuals like former President Barack Obama, and actor Leonardo DiCaprio who talka bout combating climate change.

The 11th Hour 

Leonardo DiCaprio interviews many scientists in their respective fields about the issues of climate change.


Youtube Videos

The Lost Neighborhood Under New York's Central Park presented by Vox.

Extreme Heat is Worse in Redlined Areas by Grist

Environmental Justice Explained presented by Grist

North Carolinians Fight the $7.5 Billion Atlantic Coast Pipeline presented by Grist.

Climate Change is a Social Justice Issue by Adriana Laurent presented by TEDxUBC

Racism & Climate Change Are About You by Dr. Atyia Martin presented by TEDxDirigo


Interview Transcripts

Tracy Fernandez Rysavy interviews Robert Bullard

Ben Goldfarb interviews Matthew Tejada the former head of the Environmental Protection Agency in 2013

Chris Anderson from Science over Everything interviews Samantha Shattack in 2017 about Environmental Justice and the future of the EPA



Hot Take by Mary Annilese Heglar is looking into the climate crisis and what we do and do not talk about

The Last Environmentalist hosted by Josh Dorfman who discusses how everyday people can make an impact on climate change

Green Dreamer hosted by Kamea Chayne is a podcast that encourages people to find their fulfilment

The Sustainable Futures Report hosted by Anthony Day who discusses all things sustainable

Climate Rising by Harvard Business School addresses the impacts that climate change has on business


Growing a sense of community while helping fight hunger.


The Indiana State Community Garden opened in 2008 and has since grown to 160 plots for community members to use free of charge. Each gardener has access to communal tools and water, in return gardeners agree to: tend to their plots and paths, plant only annuals, and refrain from using pesticides, herbicides, and fungicides. Additionally gardeners are required to commit 3 hours of service a month to the garden and donate 10% of their annual yield to local charities. In 2018 collectively the ISU Community Garden Donated 2500 lbs. of produce!

During the 2018 garden season, gardeners from the ISU Community Garden donated a combined 2500+ lbs. of produce! 


Location: 219 N 11th Street
Growing season: April - October
Cost: We ask every gardener to donate a portion of their produce to the food pantry of their choice.

  • Available plot sizes: 10x10 feet, 10x15 feet, or 20x20 feet
  • Tools and garden hose will be available during scheduled hours each week.
  • The community garden is pesticide, herbicide, insecticide, and fungicides free.
  • Expert consultation will be available through volunteers.


Registration for the 2019 garden season is open now. Please follow the links on the right side of the page to reserve your own plot now!

Fill out a garden application now for a plot during the 2019 season!




An image of the alumni clock and a cloudy sunset background with the Sustainable Cities logo in the bottom left corner

The Sustainable Cities (SC) Program intends to leverage the resources of Indiana State University towards creating more sustainable cities while providing unique experiential learning opportunities to ISU students. The SC program partners local communities with ISU faculty, students, and staff via a yearlong partnership. Local municipal staff, community members, and other key stakeholders in the community help identify comprehensive portfolio of projects that will advance the local resilience and sustainability of the community. Students work on these partner-identified projects through existing courses to provide ideas for real solutions to community challenges and sustainable development.

Button image that says 14 plus affiliated faculty Button image that says 10 plus academic departments A button image that says 20 plus unique projects 

Communities through out the Wabash Valley have leaders who want to make real change. These leaders are passionate about moving their cities forward into the future, but are often limited by lack of resources, staff, and budget. The ISU Sustainable Cities Program utilizes the innovation and energy of students and faculty to provide ideas that will address these issues. This relationship reinforces and strengthens our communities. For communities, the SC program provides linkages to moving forward community-identified sustainability goals. 

ISU and the community partner will produce tangible and relevant outcomes for the community partner while providing ISU students with real world project completion. The program utilizes a community engagement model by the Educational Partnerships for Innovation in Community Network (EPIC-N) that many universities have adopted. EPIC-N emphasizes the connection between local communities and university partnerships to the 17 United Nations Sustainable Development Goals. Connecting local communities in the Wabash Valley to the overarching global mission to create reslient and sustainable cities will promote our students as sustainable leaders in our communities.

Partnering with SC

overhead image of the fountain on ISU's campus at night

Our Program

ISU launched the first year of the Sustainable Cities (SC) Program in 2020. Years of experience in community engagement and outreach at ISU bolsters the impact of this program. Undergraduate and graduate students across disciplines including business, earth and environmental systems, public administration, built environment, and more engage in projects identified by partnered cities to develop recommendations and strategies that bring together "real-world" experience and creative minds. With students involved in these experiential projects, the SC Program prepares students to enter the workforce and connected to surrounding communities. These community projects and plans will create lasting impact for years to come for the communities and students involved.

SC staff work closely with faculty and interested organizations on campus to incorproate community projects into their courses and other experiential learning opportunities, and to connect students directly to community partners. This unique partnership allows for a deep learning and innovative strategies that is wholly beneficial for the community. SC staff will work with traditional faculty-course projects, and with any unique interested parties at ISU that want to integrate the Sustainable Cities program. Students engaged in SC projects will be better prepared for the workforce and become more connected to the communities in our state. The SC Program has an everlasting impact.

Our World-Class Faculty

SC Program courses are taught by world-class faculty that are well-respected in their fields. These faculty range across a variety of departments. All are committed to integrating experiential projects that their students will be able to provide substantial contributions towards our surrounding communities. Participating faculty are trained in experiential learning and service learning pedagogy to work with our community partners, and in sustainable development concepts through the UN SDG's.

To see our current affiliated SC Faculty, visit this link.

Three separate images. First is a man showing solar panels to a student. Second are two colleagues discussing something over a work bench. Third is a group of people in a classroom.

Engaging Partnerships

The SC Program focuses on the integration of partnerships between faculty, students, and community partners for dyanmic and engaging experiences that produce tangible results. All engaged partners benefit from this transformative experience.

CITIES: benefit from the hours of attention to experiential projects by students and faculty; the connection to services and resources at ISU; building ongoing relationships with experienced professionals at ISU; the ability to move projects forward; engagement with marginalized groups; possibility of development of material for future grant submissions; an energized staff and community; and increased public awareness and excitement.

FACULTY: benefit from new relationships in surrounding communities; connections to other faculty that are doing community engagement; administrative and planning support from SC staff; future research and publication opportunities; and more engaged and motivated students.

STUDENTS: benefit from utilizing learned knowledge to "real-world" issues and projects; gaining professional and applicable experience for future jobs; connecting to local community leaders and forming those relationship; and developing applicable skills.

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Current Partnership

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Current Partnership - The City of Marshall

The City of Marshall in Illinois is our new community partner for the 2022-23 academic year. This partnership will unite SC faculty with a great community.

The City of Marshall is the county seat of Clark County, Illinois and approximately 20 miles west of Terre Haute. The population is approximately 3,500. This is a vibrant community in the Wabash Valley and has great community leadership. Mayor John Hasten and so many community members have shown dedication to the growth of Marshall.

Participating faculty will integrate projects in partnership with city staff and community points of contacts. Students will receive real-world experiential projects and experiences that will help deepen learning and connect to career readiness competencies. Any interested faculty are encouraged to reach out and learn how you can participate in the program.



The City of Marshall and the SC program will soon host a listening session within the community to learn more about the community and potential projects for sustainable development.

The SC program would like to invite all interested students, staff, and faculty at ISU to come to one of our campus listening sessions. We especially want to invite students, staff, and faculty from Marshall to come to our listening sessions to hear about the program and provide their ideas for projects within the community.

Faculty Profiles

Ms.Katrina Babb - Sr Instructor Dir Ctr Eco Ed for the Department of Economics

During the Spring semester of 2022 her Econ 351 Labor Economics class will work with the Mayor and City Clerk of Marshall, IL to develop trainings, workshops, lesson plans, and more to provide to community members that want to start a business in Marshall.


Dr. Arif Akgul - Associate Professor for the School of Criminology and Security Studies

During the Fall semester of 2022 his INAN 320 Strategic Intelligence class worked with the Mayor, Police Chief, the Sheriff, Health Department Officials, and Director of Public Works of Marshall, IL to develop a drug strategy and action plan aimed to understand and assess the local needs and create a strategic plan on drug use and the overdose problem in Marshall.


Dr. Craig Morehead - Assistant Professor for the Department of Kinesiology, Recreation, and Sport

During the Fall semester of 2022 his SPM 440 Sport Facility Planning class worked with Director of Public Works of Marshall, IL to develop an indoor venue appropriate for recreation and physical activity, particularly during colder months, for all citizens of Marshall and on an outdoor complex that may serve as a venue to host tournaments and act as a mechanism for sport tourism.


Mrs. Kimberly Smith - Senior Instructor & Interior Architecture Design (IAD) Program Coordinator for the Department of Built Environment

During the Fall semester of 2022 her IAD 251 Residential Design+Bath class worked with the Marshall Public Works Technician, Joel Sims, to develop single family homes within the $100,000 price point to attract young, professional families to the Marshall community and to create more/new housing stock for potential buyers in the area, especially for families looking for modern amenities in a historic rural community.


Eric Post - Assistant Professor for the Department of Applied Medicine and Rehabilitation

During the Fall semester of 2022 his ATTR 639 Public Health in Athletic Training class worked with area health providers to perform a needs assessment on the potential costs and resources needed to provide a community-facing athletic trainer within the Marshall, IL community. In addition, they shared perspectives on how athletic trainers can provide services to serve the health needs in the Marshall community, and determined the best strategies for providing access to athletic trainers in the Marshall community.


Dr. Jim Speer - Professor for the Department of Earth and Environmental Systems 

His ENVI 460 Conservation and Sustainability class will be partnering with the Marshall, IL City Engineer and GIS Expert to conduct original research for about 30 individual student research projects where they collect data and analyze it related to community-identified issues. Proposed projects include a bike path plan, downtown revitalization, transportation initiatives, recreation opportunities, and brownfield and superfund site soil analysis and remediation plan.


Dr. Nathan Myers - Professor for the Department of Political Science and Director of the Master of Public Administration program

 One of his graduate courses in the MPA program, PA 605: Organizational Behavior in Government Agencies, is working with the city of Marshall, IL to develop an internal and external communication plan to better coordinate activities surrounding a community-wide event celebrating the upcoming eclipse in 2023. Other students in the same course are working on providing background information regarding the establishment of a community foundation in Marshall. 


Dr. Myers' PA 602: Statistical Analysis in Public Administration class will address some concerns about housing in Marshall related to the affordability of housing for younger couples, families, and individuals looking to live in the community. The class is particularly focused on how to create an affordable housing development in a manner that not only attracts younger people/families to the community, but helps the community to attract essential occupations, such as teachers and nurses. 


Students in Dr. Myers' PSCI 415/515 Public Policy class will be looking at opportunities for clean-up and re-use of multiple sites that qualify as brownfield and superfund sites and identifying funding opportunities for such work.


Dr. Maureen Casile - Assistant Professor for the Department of Management, Information Systems, and Business Education

 Her MBA 690 class partnered with Marshall, IL city officials plan two events to attract residents of surrounding communities to Marshall for the holiday season.


Past Partnership

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Previous Partnership - The City of Sullivan

The City of Sullivan was ISU Sustainable Cities' inaugural partner city during the 2020-21 academic year. The partnership was extended into the 2021-22 academic year due to the impact of the COVID-19 pandemic in 2020. 

The City of Sullivan has a longstanding commitment to its residents and community. The people of Sullivan show a real desire to make lasting change towards the vibrance and sustainability of their city. Through ongoing community projects such as the Sullivan Improvement Alliance, Paths to progress, and more, this city has innovative and experiential projects for our students at ISU to take on. Sullivan, IN has over 4,000 residents and is the seat in Sullivan County which has over 21,000 community members. Projects related to this partnership will help address needs identified by local officials, community members, and other partnerships.

Over two years of the program, SC and the City of Sullivan were able to integrate 21 course-based projects in partnership with 10 different faculty. Some of the projects included strategic community marketing initiatives with the downtown business association, neighborhood revitalization analyses and economic plans, neighborhood development plans, downtown gym and youth sports complex master plan concepts, and many more. Reports on these course-based projects can be found at our Report Repository.

Media Coverage



Student & Faculty Resources

Welcome to the Sustainable Cities Program!

We are commited to facilitating successful and engaging partnerships between you and our SC partner. SC Program staff work closely with faculty and community partners to incorporate community projects. We also work to provide local knowledge and deeper understandings of the issues, which guarantees that projects are innovative and fit the community needs. ISU is proud of the successful community engagement and experiential learning opportunities our faculty help provide students, and we intend to uphold this success.

At the end of each SC course, the materials and presentations should be sent to the Sustainability Coordinator to compile and create individual reports to be submitted to the city partner and publicized. Course materials do not have to reflect the report template, but should have the flexibility to fit into the structure within the report template.

Please take the time to read through the entire Faculty Guide for the SC program and find information about your role within this partnership.

Course Needs

The Center for Community Engagement is a useful resource for faculty that need creative assistance or insight into the experiential learning project integration. They can offer insight into curricular challenges with integrating these projects.The CCE is intentionally involved in the SC program to provide faculty with varying levels of experiential learning experience the direct connection to experts. 

The Faculty Center for Teaching Excellence is another resource to use when you need insight into instructional design. FCTE staff are excellent at assisting our faculty with instructional aspects to all courses and assist the SC program during the faculty seminar. They are a great resource for developing instructional strategies and identifying other resources related to instruction.

The Career Center is another resource to consult when you are looking at integrating the Career Readiness Competencies or any other career-related learning outcomes and goals. The Career Center staff can assist in aligning goals and outcomes with field-specific project ideas or instructional strategies.


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