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Education and Research

Hendrix-Sustainability Education
Professor Steve Hendrix and student Theresa Hendrick '10 clean a tiny sensor used to test water quality on the Hillsborough River.
Students and faculty in several disciplines are actively involved in study, teaching and research. The Environmental Science program is a key area of learning focus. Courses like Sustainability in Cities, Biodiversity Conservation, Environmental Economics, Social Issues in Business and Tropical Biology/Coral Reefs are just a few of the courses that focus on environmental issues.

The Faculty Sustainability Committee works to implement sustainable solutions in the classroom and on campus, producing resources like Classroom Sustainability Strategies and Campus Recycling Resources. The existing committee includes Dan Huber, Biology; Bella Galperin, Management; Sasko Ivanov, Mathematics; Stephen Kucera, Biology; Simon Schuler, Chemistry and Physics; Brooke Scherer, Art; and Jessa Madosky, Biology. Administrative members in an ex-officio capacity include Gina Firth, associate dean of Wellness/Student Affairs. The committee's mission is to develop a culture of sustainability and global stewardship within the campus community.

UT has about 140 student organization and clubs including these with environmental interests: Environmental Protection Coalitions (EPC), Student Environmental Action Coalitions (SEAC), Beta Beta Beta (honors Biology) and Tampa Bay Association of Environmental Professionals.

Our own Marine Research Lab located on Tampa Bay is involved in various projects that support our sea water resources, coral reefs and sea life.

Earth Charter
In 2008. UT hosted the Earth Charter Community Summit. This is an annual summit that brings people together in cities around the world to be inspired to make the Earth Charter's principles a reality in their lives and communities. The summit is organized by The Institute for Ethics & Meaning, a volunteer community-building organization based in Tampa. The programs include speakers and highlighted initiatives in business, education and government from more than 50 locations.

In 2008 Tampa Bay area businesses first were honored with the presentation of Sustainable Business Awards. The selection of the award winners was undertaken as Sykes College of Business graduate project.

Each year since 2008, UT has worked with Earth Charter to continue hosting the Sustainable Business Awards. These programs bring 200-300 business and community leaders to our campus to focus sustainability innovations and initiatives. The award program expands awareness to encourage sustainability efforts and recognizes companies for their works in this realm. The University of Tampa is pleased to help provide leadership with Earth Charter on the awards program. We are very pleased to have our graduate students involved in the efforts for their learning benefits and for the opportunity to contribute to the community.

In this same year, UT hosted the Earth Charter Community Summit. The summit brought people together in cities around the world to be inspired to make the Earth Charter's principles a reality in their lives and communities. It should be noted that in 2001 UT helped launch Earth Charter Community Initiatives, which was striving to create a national movement focusing on sustainability. Its initiatives were broadcast via satellite from UT to 12 U.S. cities. For more information about Earth Charter USA, visit