Dickinson Engages with Communities
On Campus, Locally, Statewide, Nationally, and Internationally
Civic engagement and community are at the heart of transitioning to a more sustainable society, and are deeply embedded in the Dickinson experience. Dickinson engages in community building on campus, in the Greater Carlisle Area, across the state of Pennsylvania, nationally and internationally to promote sustainability practices and learning. Community building, community service, service learning and outreach are supported by a number of Dickinson offices and programs that include the Office of the President, Academic Affairs, the Community Studies Center, the Center for Sustainability Education (CSE), the Alliance for Aquatic Resource Monitoring (ALLARM), the Dickinson Organic Farm and the Office of Community Service.
On campus a culture of sustainability is thriving and growing, aided by the Treehouse, a sustainable community residence hall, peer mentoring by Eco-Reps, The Handlebar Bicycle Co-op, the Idea Fund, and many other campus organizations.
Dickinson is active in Carlisle and surrounding communities, investing financial and human resources in local agencies and collaborating with a variety of partners to create a sustainable community that is economically robust, socially just, culturally vibrant, and environmentally resilient. The Dickinson Farm, ALLARM and CSE run educational programs for area youth, and more than 200 Dickinson students volunteer in the community through programs of the Office of Community Service.
Reaching across the state of Pennsylvania, ALLARM works with community associations to assist citizens to monitor and protect their watersheds, focusing on communities where shale gas development is underway or planned. The Dickinson Farm is a leader in the Pennsylvania Association for Sustainable Agriculture. Campus Operations is closely engaged with the Central Pennsylvania Chapter of the U.S. Green Building Council and its mission to promote sustainable building practices. CSE works with and is represented on the board of the Pennsylvania Environmental Resource Consortium of colleges and universities, which promotes sustainability in higher education.
At the national level, Dickinson is working to reduce emissions of greenhouse gases as a Charter Signatory and member of the Leadership Circle of the American College and University Presidents’ Climate Commitment. We are active members of the Association for Sustainability in Higher Education and the National Council for Science and the Environment. Dickinson hosts sustainability conferences and workshops that are attended by faculty from colleges in the Eastern seaboard, the south, Midwest and west.
Internationally, sustainability is developing a footprint in Dickinson’s study abroad programs, providing our students opportunities to learn about sustainability in different cultures and to engage with the communities in which our programs are located. Dickinson brings scholars and professionals from other countries to campus to participate in sustainability programs and teach sustainability themed courses. We are a recognized observer organization of the U.N. Framework Convention on Climate Change and send delegations of students and faculty to its conferences.