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Higher Education

Illinois Campus Sustainability Compact

The Illinois Campus Sustainability Compact outlines environmental goals that colleges and universities -- both public and private -- may adopt on their campuses. The Compact includes objectives such as purchasing renewable energy, implementing green building practices, developing sustainable transportation options, improving water conservation, and incorporating sustainable dining practices.

More campus resources:

  • Campus Sustainability Compact Resource Guide: This guide further explains the three recognition levels and provides a list of sample policies and practices that institutions have successfully used to incorporate sustainability into their campus operations.
  • Campus Sustainability Compact Enrollment: After reviewing the materials above, consider completing the enrollment application for becoming a compact school.
  • Campus Sustainability Recognition: As a campus makes progress on it's sustainability goals, the compact campus can apply for recognition when they have achieved bronze, silver, and/or gold levels.
  • Compact Signees: See which colleges and universities have already comitted to the Illinois Campus Sustainability Compact.

Please contact Eric Heineman in the Governor's Office at for more information on this compact process.

2011 Sustainable Colleges and Universities Symposium

On October 28th, 2011, Governor Quinn's Green Governments Coordinating Council, the Illinois Green Economy Network, and Heartland Community College organized the the 2011 Sustainable Universities and Colleges Symposium.


Read Governor Quinn's Press Release on the symposium, here.

If you attended the symposium we would love to hear your feedback. Complete this survey to share your thoughts.

For more information on the Symposium and future Higher Education Symposiums, contact Eric Heineman at

This annual free symposium was an opportunity for college and university administrators, engineers, architects, professors, and student leaders to exchange ideas in the effort to enhance sustainability at Illinois institutions of higher learning and identify new programs to apply at institutions across the state.

This year we had a record number of panels, participants, and presenters. Over 300 attendees enjoyed approximately 17 panels that spanned higher education sustainability issues. Topics included local foods, urban agriculture, energy research, and bike sharing. A full agenda is available, here.

Other highlights including keynote speeches from Dr. Allen Goben, President of Heartland Community College, Mayor Chris Koos, Normal, IL, and Governor Pat Quin. Governor Quinn spoke of the importance of student education and collaboration in sustainability efforts, suggesting that Illinois can be the "Sustainabilty Capital" of the world with the efforts of environmentally-conscious higher education communities.

Following the Governor's remarks, Julie Elzanati, Executive Director of co-host IGEN, gave a presentation on the collaborative efforts of community colleges in advancing sustainable policies at Illinios higher education institutions. This message carried particular resonance at this year's symposium as attendees marvelled at the sustainability efforts on display at host Heartland Community College. Attendees later had the opportunity to witness these efforts firsthand as they toured Heartland's geothermal-powered Workforce Development Center.

All speakers also trumpeted the efforts of EVTown, "a broad-based effort to establish Bloomington-Normal, Illinois as a model electric vehicle community". Mayor Koos aired his "Welcome to the New Normal" video featuring local residents engaging with new electric vehicle possibities.

Conference attendees then had the privilege of test driving two electric vehicles, the Mitsubishi "I" and the Nissan "LEAF". When they weren't jetting around campus in sustainable vehicles or studying green innovations, attendees enjoyed delicious local and sustainable foods courtesty of Normal Community West High School and the Edible Economy Project.

For a full list of presentations featured at the 2011 Symposium click and links to presentation materials, click here.

2011 Sustainable Universities and Colleges Symposium Presentations

GGCC's Green Universities and Colleges Sustainable University Subcommittee

This new subcommittee is led by Dr. Gary Miller, Associate Executive Director of the Institute of Natural Resource Sustainability at U of I - Urbana-Champaign and Julie Elzanati at Heartland Community College. For more information please click here.​​