A publication for the faculty, staff, administrators, and friends of California State University, Chico
May 12, 2005 Volume 35 / Number 8

 

Up Front

Greg Francis Honored for Environmental Stewardship

The Associated Students Environmental Affairs Council has chosen Greg Francis, executive dean and director of Facilities Planning, to receive the Paul Maslin Envir-onmental Stewardship Award.

In his position as executive dean, Francis is the liaison with the Chancellor‘s office in facilities planning and capital construction affairs. He was instrumental in forming the Master Plan and influential in seeing that the Master Plan has a strong sustainability component.

Courtney Voss, newly elected A.S. Commissioner of Environmental Affairs, said that Francis has a passion about environmental health and moving CSU, Chico towards a green campus for himself as well as the campus. ”He’s not just concerned about making our campus a green campus, he’s committed to doing it for himself.“ For example, she said that the A.S. had a solar company look at putting solar panels on the BMU. Francis had them look at other buildings. He also has an idea, said Voss, to create solar bike parking, which would not just create shade and energy, but educate students.

Francis‘s early background was in farming and he still farms. He connects his deep interest in the environment, in part, to working closely with the earth and experiencing the need for managing limited resources.

He understands the need for an integrated approach to issues of the environment and works with all segments of the campus and all related disciplines. He credits students with getting the ball rolling in terms of environmental issues. He pointed out that the A.S. was the first campus group to look at recycling.

Francis believes that involving students in environmental research and activities helps create an environmental literacy that they will take with them into the world of work. He uses the example of the recent sustainability study just completed by 80 students in four different classes. ”We aren’t the first campus to complete a sustainability study, but we are the first campus where students have done it. Those students have a new level of environmental awareness,“ he said.

The stewardship award was created in 2001 to honor Paul Maslin, professor emeritus, Department of Biology, for his work with students along Big Chico Creek.