Authored by: Kelly Wellman, Texas A&M University
Date: January 6, 2020
Texas had excellent representation at AASHE this year. It seemed that during every session changeover I encountered at least two peer school colleagues chatting or walking with one another. In fact, at one point during the conference, so many of us were gathered, it felt as though we were holding a mini TRACS social outside the exhibit hall. What struck me about that moment was that folks were genuinely enjoying visiting with one another. It was terrific camaraderie and a reminder of how important relationship building is to both mental wellness and long-term work success. Knowing that we have a support system and can reach out to our colleagues and discuss work challenges dramatically increases the collective success of our institutions.
This ever-growing web of sustainability peers is why TRACS hosted its fifth annual networking session as part of AASHE. These gatherings are an opportunity to introduce TRACS, discuss volunteer opportunities, promote the upcoming Summit, and briefly meet and welcome fellow participants. During networking time, we spent the bulk of the session in small groups sharing information and questions about topics of choice. This year, topics revolved around six themes: breaking down silos across campus, green building and energy, faculty and student engagement, zero waste, efficient transportation, and design thinking.
If you were not able to attend AASHE, no worries! The 2020 TRACS Summit in South Padre Island will be an even better opportunity to visit with your Texas peers. We hope to see you there.