Hiram College understands that "sustainability" is a big concept...and a big deal.
Officially defined as the ability to meet the needs of the present without compromising the ability of future generations to meet their needs, sustainability demands three things: healthy environments, vibrant societies and communities, and responsible fiscal planning.
Hiram College is dedicated to enhancing sustainability at global, national, and local levels. That's why students, faculty, and staff across the campus are busy learning about and doing things that contribute to a more sustainable world. But we do prize work that we can do right here — in this place and its many special spaces — to create a more sustainable Hiram.
In keeping with Hiram's long tradition of learning through doing, there's a a lot going on here — with new projects always in the making.
Here's some of what we're up to, and what we've done:
- Preserved 221 acres of Field Station land through a conservation easement
- Ongoing research, planning, and implementation of select campus sustainability projects by Hiram SEED Scholars
- Completed a Deep Energy Retrofit (2014) of campus-owned house to create the TREE House, the home of Environmental Studies
- Acquired 152 acres of logged forest for stream, wetland, and riparian restoration project
- Retrofitted campus buildings with low-flow water devices, LED lighting, and energy efficient windows
- Initiated seed collection project to grow and replant native and prairie plants into field habitats to increase diversity and reduce invasive species
- Conserve 10,000 to 25,000 gallons of water per year with rain barrels and tanks at the Field Station and on campus
- Engage students, faculty, and staff in citizen science through Hiram College's Frog Watch chapter, part of a national effort to catalog frog and toad species diversity.
- Instituted sustainable gardening program to provide food for educational animals at the James H. Barrow Field Station, saving $1,500-$2,000 annually
- Partner field station faculty and staff with students to complete dozens of land, water and wildlife conservation projects throughout the year
- Installed solar arrays (2010 and 2012) to provide electricity to the Athletic Center, Gelbke Art Building, and Physical Plant headquarters
- Achieved LEED certification in the James H. Barrow Field Station building and East Residence Hall, and certifiable status in the Dining Hall