Green Living

Living on Grounds is a defining part of the undergraduate experience at UVA. However, with over two million square feet of residential living space operating 24/7, residence halls account for a significant portion of the university’s energy usage. Fortunately, there are many things that individual residents can do to reduce UVA’s environmental impact while also improving student experience.

The HRL Sustainability Committee

Co-led by Green Living Team and the HRL Sustainability Committee Chair, the committee aims to promote sustainability initiatives and goals into dorm spaces. Member representation is divided by dorm area rather than association– for example McCormick Road dorm area, or Gooch/Dillard dorm area but there is no limit on the number of members that can represent a dorm area. Committee members are responsible for attending bi-weekly meetings, during which workshops and a speaker series are held, as well as communicating upcoming events and opportunities to their residents. Committee members are also required to host at least one program that promotes sustainability per semester and expected to help promote sustainability in their dorms by being a sustainability resource and ensuring events held in their dorm area Zero Waste. 

The application for the Sustainability Committee is currently closed for Fall 2022.


Sustainability Programing for Residence Halls

The Office for Sustainability provides six easy RA programs available at any RA’s request. 

  • Succulent Saturday: Play some sustainability trivia (with Kahoot!) to learn about efforts on Grounds and receive your very own succulent for your room! OFS will provide succulents. 
  • Sustainabili-Tea: Bring your reusable mug and enjoy some warm beverages (some compostable cups provided)! Learn about sustainable wares and UVA's waste minimization goals. 
  • O-Hill Hike: Get to know Grounds and local wildlife on this guided hike around the O-Hill trails! You will also learn about UVA's CO2 related goals and efforts residents can take to participate. 
  • Make-A-Birdfeeder: Make your own bird feeder and hang it up around Grounds! Learn about repurposing items, zero-waste initiatives, and learn your way around Grounds while enjoying local wildlife. 
  • Recycled Arts and Crafts: Come make some friendship bracelets and lanyards with recycled materials and talk about recycling and fast fashion!
  • Sort-Your-Own-Waste Dinner: OFS can cater dinner from a restaurant of your choice and residents will be taught to sort waste after a dinner-time discussion of zero-waste practices!


Green Engagement Program

The Green Engagement Program is an opportunity for any student interested in sustainability to get involved in volunteer opportunities on Grounds. By logging volunteer hours completed at sustainability events, students can become Green Certified. This is an honor that can be placed on one's resume and used to show one's commitment to sustainability efforts at UVA. Additionally, students can receive prizes as they level in the program. Opportunities that count towards volunteer hours are Corner Clean-Ups, Green Games, and Garden Workdays. To log your volunteer hours, fill out this form after each event, and be sure to upload a picture!