|The Green Ambassador Program
In 2008, the HKUST-Hang Seng Bank Green Ambassador Program
was established under the Student Affairs Office. The objectives of the program are to educate students about various aspects of the environment and to empower them to be role models and agents of change in their communities. The ultimate outcome desired is the creation of a positive influence on the wider community through the organization of other green activities and programs.
In 2012, more than 120 students joined the program as Green Ambassadors. The students actively promoted sustainability messages to the campus community by organizing a series of green activities and programs, including:
- An eco-learning trip to Taiwan, South Africa and Thailand, to gain a better understanding of sustainable development in these countries, followed by experience-sharing with fellow HKUST students and Hong Kong secondary students.
- "E-month" in March, consisting of a series of green events and activities designed to encourage the HKUST community to participate and contribute towards living a green lifestyle. Designer reusable coffee mugs were sold to students and staff. When these mugs were used, cash discount and rebates were given to individuals to reward sustainable consumption. Over the course of the month, it was estimated that the wasteful consumption of approximately 1,600 disposable cups was avoided.
- "Learning trips" to a Lamma fishing village to gain an understanding of Hong Kong's fishing industry and how eco-tourism works in Hong Kong and to the South East New Territories landfill site to gain an understanding of the operation of landfills and the broader issue of waste.
- HKUST Eco Park and campus "green tours" for secondary school students and teachers, taking in campus recycling zones, food waste recycling and the University's organic farm.
In line with the goal to move towards "A Greener UST", the University continued to actively monitor and track campus carbon emissions by calculating its carbon footprint. During the University's Environment Week, sustainability-related posters were produced and presentations were conducted through the joint efforts of the participants of several semester courses. These included "FACES of Sustainability", a look at how different members of the Hong Kong community view sustainability and "Say Something", featuring students' opinions on various local sustainability issues.
Students were further motivated into action by their peers in the Live Green! Learning Community
in Hall 6. The group focused on organizing student sustainability awareness activities, including a Beach Cleanup, a "No Air Conditioning" Day, a Vegetarian Day, and the establishment of a green rooftop for Hall 6.
The Environment Students' Society (EVSS)
is another student group which actively engages and mobilizes students to support green action on campus and in the community. In 2012, EVSS organized a number of activities:
- A "Banner Bag Up-cycling" Workshop to promote sustainability and up-cycling ideas.
- A mentoring program, connecting mentors with students and helping them embrace and learn about what a future working in the environmental field might look like.
- Beach cleanup at Cheung Chau Island during the plastic pellet spill disaster of August, 2012.
- A winter camp excursion to Hoi Ha Wan Marine Park and Long Valley.
- "GRASS HOUR - No Tiles, Just Grass" was jointly organized by EVSS and the Green Ambassadors. During this four-day activity, a piece of artificial grassland was placed at the center of Atrium, symbolizing the natural environment and contrasting with the tiles, which symbolize our busy lives. The idea was to raise student awareness about daily sustainability concepts through various activities like a low-carbon diet and eco-design. Students were also encouraged to choose a green action from a list provided on a spinning wheel, and then spread awareness of that action to their family and the wider community.
Net Impact is the HKUST MBA chapter of an international nonprofit organization. Their mission is to inspire, educate, and equip individuals to use the power of business to make positive net social, environmental and economic impacts. Net Impact recruits all MBA students who wish to further their understanding and join the global dialogue of individuals and businesses pursuing social responsibility and economic and environmental sustainability. In May 2012, Net Impact organized a Social Business Fair with product sales and a Speakers Series. Social enterprises were invited to promote their products, while industry experts and social entrepreneurs shared their success stories and experiences with CSR work.
The Nature Club
was establi shed in 1994 and is a group of HKUST "pioneers" who promote the concept of environmental conservation. The club aims to bring students closer to the nature and in 2012, they organized several trips including a visit to a Lavender garden, a Chinese white dolphin eco-watch tour, a star-gazing excursion, and visit to Nam Sang Wai and Ma Shi Chau Geo-park tour.
The University's 167 square metres organic farming area has been located at the lawn area outside LG7 since 2007. The farm continues to provide a great opportunity for students and staff to experience the fun of organic farming and bring the concept of sustainability back home. Last year, over 50 students and staff participated in various organic farming activities.