Education for Sustainable Living Program


The Education for Sustainable Living Program (ESLP) is the primary research, education, and outreach component of the CSSC. The goal of ESLP is to give students a different kind of opportunity to learn and receive academic credit. ESLP is customized at each campus to fit its specific needs. What works at one school may not work at another, but every campus’ program fits into one of three models: Student-led courses, Action Research Teams (ART), and individual internships.

ESLP gives students the chance to develop real life skills through working with academic advisors, stakeholders, and outside speakers. Employers and firms look for recent graduates with skills and experiences such as writing grants, creating and maintaining a budget, lead generation for speakers, giving presentations, compiling and analyzing data, creating and meeting deadlines, working in teams, developing media kits and marketing collateral and so much more. Many times students practice these tasks for the first time through ESLP.

Get Involved

If you would like advising on starting ESLP at your campus or if you have any questions, please contact David Shugar at dshugar(AT)ucsc(DOT)edu

Campus Models

Student-Led Courses

Each week world renowned authors, activists, and academics travel to university campuses to share sustainable solutions for the ecological, economic and social challenges of the 21st Century. The structure and content of the course may vary by locale, but most of the participating campuses offer ESLP for course credit, and typically open lectures to the public.

Research for the Campus – Action Research Teams

For the more ambitious students, there are opportunities to participate in action-oriented research. Action Research Team Projects (ART Projects) are student-directed, experiential learning opportunities that engage innovation between students and university faculty, while actively improving quality of life on their campus and in their community. Such experiential learning inspires participants to further internalize the concept of sustainability, and carry it in practice beyond academia and into a greater society.

Individual Internships

For schools without an institutionalized version of ESLP, motivated students under their professor supervisor will do research for academic credit. These projects range from analyzing landscaping water use on a campus, to actively greening a department. The positive outcomes of the research and the new connection with the faculty can be a catalyst for institutionalizing ESLP at that campus.

Campuses Currently Running ESLP

ESLP Statewide Resources

Want to create a ESLP at your school and would like some template resources? This google folder: ESLP Statewide Resources, has sample syllabi, course application forms, statewide contact sheets and other useful information to make student-led courses a reality at your campus. Student are also welcome to contact members of ESLP, listed on the statewide contact sheet within the folder, to share resources and best practices for creating student-led sustainability education.

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *