By Richard Zagrzecki
The University of Houston’s sustainability initiatives are having an influence internationally.
Dr. Habib M. Alshuwaikhat, a professor of urban sustainability from King Fahd University in Saudi Arabia, recently spent a day on campus learning about what UH is undertaking and its vision for sustainability.
Alshuwaikhat reached out to Sarah Kelly, program manager for UH’s Office of Sustainability, to set up the visit, the first of several he is planning to make to universities in the United States, Great Britain and other countries.
He is trying to develop an urban sustainability program for universities in Saudi Arabia and wants to research what others are doing.
During his April 17 visit to UH, he participated in a faculty discussion that included overviews of major sustainability programs here on campus, as well as presentations from faculty members about sustainability initiatives they are undertaking on campus.
He also toured the campus to see some of the sustainability initiatives, including the LEED Silver certified Cougar Woods Dining Hall, the community garden, Big Belly recycling containers and the green roof. He also toured the Central Plant.
“Dr. Alshuwaikhat was happy to hear about the sustainability undertakings at UH,” Kelly said. “We all had a fruitful discussion about the impact that sustainability curriculum, research and initiatives at universities can have. Once given the proper education and tools, students are able take fresh approaches to burgeoning global issues like those that affect sustainability.”