When you hear the word sustainability, most people think about the environment. But there is also community sustainability and a professor at R.I.T. is being honored for her work in that field.
Ann Howard loves working with students. But she likes it even more when her students get out into the community.
"For about 13 years we have been creating learning opportunities for our students in partnerships with community leaders primarily on the northwest communities of Rochester," says Howard.
It's an idea called community sustainability. "This is actually an emerging understanding of sustainability," adds Howard. It's a way communities work together to solve problems and keep things moving forward. Howard is the senior associate dean of the College of Liberal Arts at RIT. She has used students there to work with groups in the city.
Howard says, "we've been very involved in the urban gardening movement. In that community students have been actively engaged in youth leadership development. Create learning communities between rit students and young people in the community." Now she is being honored as a national sustainability champion for her efforts.
"It is very much an honor, very humble. Awards like this not just one person who makes things happen. Very happy with the level of student participation we have had in all of our work. The students are really the ones who create learning opportunity for themselves as well as the exchange of information between the community and students," says Howard.