Knowlwdge Center



Achieving a Green Campus By Embracing Environmental Wellness Best Practices.

The University of Virginia is one of the nation’s leading centers of innovation. Inspired by Thomas Jefferson, arguably this country’s most important architect and social thinker, the University’s commitment to the practices of sustainability dates back centuries, and its current activities in the area of environmental wellness, green architecture and sustainability are diverse and influential.

A sense of social responsibility, a student body and faculty that are committed to environmental health, and a belief that it must lead by example all play in important role in how the University embraces today’s environmental challenges. Because a healthy indoor environment plays a crucial role in the University’s overall environmental public health strategy, Bob Carman, Building Services superintendent, approached the Building Wellness Institute to train the University’s building maintenance supervisors in green cleaning best practices. The Building Wellness Institute’s Green Healthy Cleaning Training Program successfully demonstrated to the Building Services supervisors, through instruction and example, how to implement a cost-effective strategy that improves performance and reduces environmental impact.

“The Building Wellness Institute helped us distinguish the University and demonstrate to our students, parents and greater community that we are doing everything we can to sustain a healthy environment.”

Bob Carman
Building Services Superintendent
University of Virginia Facilities Management

The training helped supervisors and staff realize the direct affect they have on the health of building occupants, including cleaning personnel. Building Services supervisors and staff now have the ability to determine which chemicals, techniques, and equipment might positively or negatively impact the health of all tenants. Supervisors are also looking more closely at recycling practices and what they can do to prevent waste going to landfills. As a result of the Building Wellness Institute training, Building Services is now a leading contributor to the University’s overall pursuit of green cleaning success. 

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Leading the Effort to Green Maryland’s Public Schools.

Home to the town of Columbia, a planned community built around the central idea of enhancing its residents’ lives and eliminating socio-economic barriers, Howard County, Maryland has a reputation for change that dates back to the 1960s. Today, Howard County continues its long tradition of innovation through a variety of programs aimed at achieving environmental sustainability among its businesses, residents and schools.

On June 25, 2009, the Howard County Public School System’s Office of Custodial Services demonstrated its commitment to the environment and the health of its K-12 students countywide by completing the Building Wellness Institute’s Green Seal™ GS-42 compliant Building Wellness Certification Training program. On that day, Howard County became the first K-12 school system in the state of Maryland to complete a green cleaning certification training program.

“We’ve now raised the bar by protecting the health of our students and faculty, and by providing our staff with the knowledge and hands-on skills they need to become leaders in environmental wellness.”

Olivia Claus, Manager,
Office of Custodial Services
Howard County Public School System

As demonstrated through green cleaning best practices and the renovation of existing schools to meet the LEED standard, Howard County understands the long-term benefits of going green. Howard County also understands that procuring green cleaning products for its schools, as mandated by Maryland House Bill 1363, is a great start to protecting the health of its students, but that a sustainable green cleaning program also requires best practices and procedures designed to ensure proper cleaning and document effectiveness. “We believe that the GS-42 accredited training provided by Building Wellness Institute will help us streamline our processes and clean more efficiently,” said Olivia Claus, Manager, Office of Custodial Services. “We now have a solid foundation from which to measure our own success.”

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