Greening Indiana University Athletics





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Final Report



Intern: Isaac Farley


Mentor: Chris Reynolds
















Table of Contents





Introduction                                                                                                                        02



Methods                                                                                                                   03



Progress                                                                                                                    04



Recommendations                                                                                               07



Contacts                                                                                                                  10



























A well-executed sporting event utilizes a series of well-coordinated systems for transportation, administration, lighting, building efficiency, food procurement, and waste management.  Thus, the “Greening IU Athletics” project has been a synergy between assessing the current practices within IU Athletics and implementing a pilot program to advance those practices.  The basis for a solid foundation, on which to expand practices to conserve resources and reduce the carbon footprint of the department, was established through department-wide interviews, data analysis, and interviews with other collegiate athletic departments.



Educating the Athletics’ staff, the volunteers assisting with the initiative, and the community is crucial to the success of “greening” the department. While Indiana University Athletics has implemented “greener” practices (e.g., local produce in Athletic dining, occupancy sensors in newer buildings, recycled content of office paper, etc.), the department has challenges ahead if they intend on being the “greenest”Athletics department in the Big Ten Conference. On a positive note, individuals within Athletics are receptive to issues relating to sustainability. As with any change, transition takes time. That said, the atmosphere within Athletics is conducive to sustainability-related progress.


Lastly, if Indiana University Athletics continues its push to be “greener,” with forward thinking, IU has the potential to be a long-term model for the Big Ten.  By drawing on the leadership of sustainability-minded collegiate programs - University of Florida, University of Colorado-Boulder, and the University of California-Davis - IU can gain a better understanding of the benefits of sustainable systems and tailor “green” practices that aid the department, the university, and the Bloomington community.




My internship began in November of 2009 with a meeting between my mentor, Chris Reynolds, the Senior Associate Athletic Director, and myself.  In the initial meeting, Mr. Reynolds expressed the department’s desire to be “greener,” and to move forward by addressing some “low-hanging fruit.” He stressed the role of the athletics department on campus. We both agreed that our first step should be to establish a foundation on which to build our green initiative. We had to gain a better understanding of current procedures and attitudes within the Indiana University Athletics department, the Big Ten Conference, and collegiate athletics as a whole. In order to construct this foundation a preliminary assessment of the department needed to be completed.


I researched sustainability frameworks in the National Collegiate Athletic Association (NCAA), and located the Association for the Advancement of Sustainability in Higher Education’s (AASHE) 2009 Collegiate Athletic Department Sustainability Survey Report. Since Indiana University participated in the survey, I felt this was a natural starting point for my inquiry into current practices within the department. I interviewed staff members in the department to gain a better understanding of department-wide knowledge of sustainable systems, habits related to sustainability, and departmental plans to be “greener.”


We discussed the prospects of “green” sporting events, and agreed on a schedule to implement the department’s ambitious goals. My mentor and I agreed to meet every other week, or as necessary, to monitor my progress and consider alternative courses of action.


During my research for the preliminary assessment, it became increasingly evident that completing a comprehensive assessment that adhered to my original timeline, a goal I originally set for completion by the end of the spring semester of 2010, was not attainable given the sheer magnitude of the department. While conducting interviews in the various departments within IU Athletics, a clearer picture of the individuals and motivations involved informed me of the challenges to and the attainability of my goals.  Indeed, my work would be a careful balance between education, action, and research.


Greening Cream & Crimson initiative logo.




During my six months as an intern, the Athletics department has made significant progress – the kind of progress that can be built upon.  The project has been a learning experience for all involved, including myself. We have accomplished many firsts:


Š      A preliminary assessment, which will serve as a foundation for the later comprehensive assessment, of current practices in the department was completed in February 2010


Š      The first-ever Greening Cream & Crimson initiative was coined on February 09, 2010



Š      The first-ever Greening Cream & Crimson bimonthly newsletter, initially planned as an internal sustainability-related educational piece (that now will be expanded and offered to the public) was introduced to the staff on April 16, 2010


Š      The Athletics Green Team, a diverse twenty-member group with representatives from each area within Athletics dedicated to advancing the green practices of the department, was assembled for their inaugural meeting on March 26, 2010


Š      As a part of this initiative, student-volunteers were trained for and carried out the first carbon neutral football game in Indiana University history on April 17, 2010. At the event, 70 volunteers collected nearly 1,100 pounds of recycling. Bicycle valet, cellular phone recycling, and education of fans in the tailgate area were also piloted



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Volunteers sorting recycling at the first-ever green sporting event (April 17th – Memorial Stadium).


While the IU Athletics Department is excited about expansion of their “green” practices, in the beginning there was some understandable hesitancy. As said before, change takes time. With each success, whether it is in an individual staff member’s understanding of the three core components of sustainability or the concept of carbon neutrality, the fans involvement in game-day recycling, or the campus partnerships that are being fostered because of this initiative, the vision of a “greener” Athletics department becomes reality.


During the summer of 2010, in preparation for the upcoming football season, various guides have been created to internally assist office functions and externally for fans on game day. A comprehensive recycling guide was designed after meetings with custodial staffs in Memorial Stadium and Assembly Hall. The previous campus guide was utilized as a reference point. Additionally, recycling guides for the concession tops were created and prompts to be displayed above both trash and recycling bins were designed. Banners for volunteer areas have also been ordered and will be available for the September 2nd game.


Office recycling in Memorial Stadium, Cook Hall, Weathers Golf, and Mellencamp Pavilion is now being collected in individual offices. Assembly Hall, staffed by physical plant, is still utilizing a centralized recycling model.


Twitter, Facebook, and a Greening Cream and Crimson email address were launched in June 2010.


Within, a greening athletics link was created to educate the public about issues related to sustainability on campus and within the department.


Pilot programs to measure the efficacy of duplexing settings, greener fonts, and wider margins have been designed and are currently being measured.


The department is currently measuring its interest in participating in the fall Energy Challenge.


Athletic dining will expand its pilot of “greenware” to suites, the Henke Hall of Champions, and in all catering done through Roy Lubovsky and company. Utensils, plates, and cups will all be corn-based products. If event planners or individuals care to utilize plastics they will be charged a service fee to do so.


Planning for the upcoming football season has continued during the summer months. The department has agreed to incentivize recycling at the six home games in the fall. It’s my hope and expectation that this will improve recycling/sustainability efforts within and around Memorial Stadium. Lastly, Coca-Cola will deliver an additional 50-60 bins the week prior to the home-opener for use inside the stadium.


In-game PSAs have been recorded for issues related to sustainability. Four coaches within the department participated.





With any first-time event there are bound to be areas in need of improvement. Many associated with the spring pilots have been addressed – a second bicycle valet area, greening cream and crimson banners, recycling signage, and incentivized recycling. But, more can be done. Promoting alternative methods of transportation should be explored. This can include future partnerships with bicycle clubs in Bloomington. I’ve discussed promoting car pooling on game day, and investigating the possibility of satellite tailgating and parking.


Volunteers will be provided with a detailed guide prior to the event, and clearer directions will be outlined at the beginning of their shifts. Shifts have been shortened to three hours (down from four in the spring). Any issues that may arise during any of the six home games shall be troubleshot and integrated into future events.


For now it appears that fans will be eligible for an IU prize package when they bring three recyclable items (or an out-of-date phone) to our volunteer booths. Ideally, registration would be conducted electronically. Unfortunately, a digital method for acquiring information has yet to be designed within Athletics, and because of time constraints within Computer Services will not be possible prior to September 2nd. In the future, a digital registration would greatly benefit the program. It would eliminate paper waste and allow us to easily survey fans – thus measuring the success of our game-day efforts.


Expanding green efforts to other sports should be explored. Realistically, it would be very difficult for an intern to manage more than football. Therefore, I think it would be advantageous to further strengthen IU Athletics relationship with Greeks go Green to formulate an official competition where Greek houses adopt various sports to “green.” Other possibilities likely exist (Alumni Association), however this may be the easiest to implement.


Green tailgating competitions have been explored and will continue to be investigated for the fall 2010. Establishing a framework (possibly similar to green events guide and scoring) for judging participants would be beneficial to its success.


For areas unrelated to game-day events, thorough interviews with each member of the Green Team should be conducted to gain a better understanding of departmental priorities related to sustainability. Many have been completed, but a few remain. In the spirit of communication and education, a sustainability workshop may prove beneficial for the staff within Athletics (summer months would be most conducive for such an event).


Since education is crucial to the success of this initiative, continued examples from other universities will provide much-needed benchmarks whereby IU Athletics can tailor green departmental practices.


Continually updating web content on the site is imperative to the initiative. Similarly, PSAs should be re-developed every year.


Locating a commercial composting operation will be crucial to the move away from plastics. Eventually, IU Athletics can embrace waste-free sporting events, but the ability to compost the “green” containers must be in place prior to making a stadium-wide shift.


Utilizing other sustainability interns within educational outreach (e.g., sustainability newsletters) has been an excellent mechanism, but engaging members of the green team must be a future goal, so a greater number of individuals within Athletics claim ownership of the program.






















Last, First Name


Office Phone

Mobile Phone


Building Services





Campbell, John

Building Services




Crabb, Chuck

Facilites Dir




Emerick, Brent





Fallwell, Tom





Facilities Services





Howard, Ron

Hoosier Disposal




Jarvis, Jimmy





Reynolds, Chris





Thompson, Nick





Lubovsky, Roy

Athletic Dining




Edge, Ron

Computer Services




Kraft, Pat





White, Mattie

Student Services




Poppy, Wendy

Sports Medicine




Rickerby, Ian





Beyers, Donna





Wise, Cheryl

Mail Room




Mart, Tom

Alumni Association




Sherman, Matt

U. of Florida 

Ruskin, Paul

Penn. State




Royer, Jennifer





Ramos, Bill





Newport, Dave

U. of Colorado




Kaden, Jeff

Engineering Services




Akers, Steve

Envtl Operations




Gudmundson, Mitch

Football Equipment




Lane, David

Building Services




Norton, Bruce

Delphi Signs


Gilmore, Bob





Chastain. Troy

Computer Services




Maddox, Jason




Joe Goss

Printing Services


Jacob Bower-Bir