From urban beekeeping, to landfill diversion efforts, to active transportation options for staff and students, Red River College shows no sign of ending its Greenest Employer winning streak.
For the seventh year in a row, RRC’s environmentally friendly policies and efforts to engage staff and students in sustainability efforts have resulted in a Canada’s Greenest Employer designation from Mediacorp Canada.
Today, almost 90 per cent of staff and faculty believe that sustainability needs to be a priority in all College operations, and it continues to be a key strategic priority, as well as a fundamental part of RRC’s five-year Strategic Plan.
“Red River College continues to be a champion of sustainability in Manitoba, and I congratulate all members of our College community for their efforts in continuing to cultivate a culture of sustainability at RRC,” says RRC president Paul Vogt. “From our applied research on green construction and vehicle technologies, to our recycling programs, to our state-of-the-art building projects, that culture touches everything we do.”
Feeding into that culture are the many initiatives that support RRC’s commitment to a green environment, including recycling and composting programs, efforts to promote public transit and other active transportation options, and e-waste drives that divert more than 10,000 pounds of electronic waste from landfills each year.
The College also embraces educational programming to help staff and students to learn more about sustainability – both at home and in the workplace. Last summer, RRC participated in an urban beekeeping project that saw three hives installed on the rooftop of the Paterson GlobalFoods Institute downtown.
The resulting honey sold out in 40 minutes at RRC’s first-ever farmers’ market; staff and students were also invited to visit the hives and learn about the important role bees play in our food system.
“An important aspect of our work is to connect staff with sustainability issues that happen on campus and in our community,” says Sara MacArthur, RRC’s Sustainability manager.
“We’ve taken staff on green building tours, visited the Brady landfill, held bike safety courses and more. These activities not only help staff make meaningful connections to sustainability issues, but with each other as well.”
“Our staff do more than just ‘know’ about sustainability — they also embrace the values of sustainability in their day-to-day actions.”