Institute for Sustainability 2020

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Programs

People in a garden

The Agroecology, Farming & Food Pathways (AFFP) program offers two interactive online courses to explore a career in agriculture and earn a Certificate in Applied Agroecology.

Student picking oranges

The Institute for Sustainability has partnered with CSUN's Facilities and Planning and Associated Students to further enhance the iconic 5-acre, 400-fruit tree orchard on campus.

Parking lot with solar panels

The Institute for Sustainability is collaborating with the Mission Resource Conservation District to provide tools, information, and training for citizens to maximize the carbon sequestration demonstration of their landscape systems.

Magenta colored flowers

The Institute for Sustainability is collaborating with American Indian Studies, Facilities and Planning, and the Tatavium Land Conservancy to design programming, landscapes, and community spaces that reflect and incorporate Tatavium traditional ecological knowledge. This project will include new planting but also direct connections off campus with the Tatavium tribe.

An orange flower

This collaboration seeks to reimagine the SCEG through a series of public art installations, an "environmental arts" maker space, new instructional signs, and community art spaces.

Man analyzing plants

In collaboration with CSUN's Facilities and Planning along with the generous support of the Fruit Tree Planting Foundation and the Mission Resource Conservation District, IS will plant a sustainable experimental intercropped orchard featuring stone fruit, coffee, and native perennial plantings. The 1/4 acre space will also feature public art projects in collaboration with IntersectLA and CSUN alum and muralist Miles Lewis. The planting will occur in November 2020.

Student planting a flower

To address declining habitats of North American pollinators, CSUN seeks to convert underutilized, neglected corners of the city into safe havens for bees, hummingbirds and other pollinators that are critical to growing the region’s food supply. These areas, dubbed “pollinator pockets,” will include plants and beehives to attract pollinators and will be built in unused and vacant lots.

Glowing seaweed in the ocean

The Institute has launched the "Sustainable Ocean Economies Initiative (SOEI). SOIE focuses on facilitating faculty/student research, teaching, academic-industry partnerships, and community-based projects focused on regenerative aquaculture production. Anchored in one Los Angeles--one the largest port cities in the world with 75 miles of coastline, CSUN faculty are engaged in myriad marine and aquaculture projects, including researching sustainable seaweed cultivation.

Recycle icon containing clothes

Designed by Dr. Tracie Tung (Family and Consumer Science), Elline Deogracias (CSUN student and IS social media coordinator), and Dr. Natale Zappia, the Sustainable Fashion Ambassador Certificate Program offers students the opportunity to systematically learn about issues in different facets of the fashion industry

Yellow and black squashes

Established in 2009, the Institute for Sustainability's 1⁄2-acre Sustainable Garden Education Center (SGEC) is our flagship agroecological center designed to educate students about sustainable urban farming techniques and biodiversity habitat preservation. Location map.

Pink sustainable menstruation logo

In Spring 2019, the Institute launched a sustainable menstruation initiative in partnership with AS, the Women’s Research and Resource Center, the USU, and Art students. This initiative aims to reduce the stigma about menstruation and provide access to sustainable alternatives to disposable menstrual care products. Through funding received from AS, free reusable menstrual cups are being distributed to students.

View of Northridge landscape

The SFV Toxic Tour takes students on a virtual "toxic tour" of the San Fernando Valley through a GIS Story Map platform. The tour is led by faculty experts revealing sites of environmental injustice but also locations of re-imagination and hope.

Up close pink flower

In honor of the 50th anniversary of earth day, we have collaborated with several of our campus partners to present a series of workshops hosted by nationally-renown urban farmers and gardeners that the CSUN and CSU community can take part in from their yard/balcony while they aren’t on campus. Everyone (staff/faculty/students) can participate to plant a simple garden with radishes, lettuce, and herbs.

Trash cans full of pipes

The Institute for Sustainability has initiated a new partnership with Vivotein, a biotech company that converts organic waste into a nutrient-dense soil amendment while reducing the number of greenhouse gases entering the atmosphere. This innovative company raises Black Soldier Fly larvae (endemic to the American South).