How often do you think about sustainability? Did you know that in SHHS we think about it every day? Sustainability is a guiding principle for Student Housing and Hospitality Services. For UBC, it’s one of our strategic priorities!

What are some of the ways that we make sustainability a priority?

We are proud to say that sustainability is an embedded value and priority across SHHS. Here are a few of the ways that we make sustainability a priority.

Ethical Sourcing

In our purchasing department, Victoria Wakefield (our very own Queen of Green) and her team make sure that we are purchasing ethically sourced goods whenever possible – for Food Services units, but also for Student Housing, Conferences & Accommodation, and Child Care Services.

Sustainable Buildings

A fundamental way that SHHS is contributing to sustainability on campus is by constructing buildings that meet the highest environmental standards.

Our new student residences – Orchard Commons, Ponderosa Commons, Brock Commons (Tallwood House), and our newest Totem houses – are all built to LEED Gold standards, and we are currently seeking certification for each.


Cross-campus partnerships are critical to our sustainability ambitions. Outside of ongoing operational partnerships, some of the unique programs that we have participated in are:


We’ve made sure that Sort it Out stations are available in facilities across SHHS to help UBC reach its goal of becoming a zero waste campus.

Plus, Executive Chef David Speight is currently working on an initiative to recover perishable and prepared food that would otherwise be destined for the compost and redirect it to those in need, both on- and off-campus. Watch out for more on this exciting project in an upcoming newsletter!

How can I help?

  • Keep learning! Through UBC Sustainability, the university supports sustainability education.
  • Act with sustainability in mind. We’re all responsible for keeping our operations sustainable, and every decision – no matter how small – counts.
  • For those of you who want to take it to the next level, consider becoming a Sustainability Coordinator!

These are just a few ideas to get you started. If you want to know more about SHHS’s commitment to sustainability, ask away! Or if there’s an idea that you have to help us become more sustainable, let us know. We’d love to hear about it.