Greater Burlington Region of Vermont Designated United Nations Regional Center of Expertise for Ground-Breaking Education for Sustainability Programs


Media contacts:
Jeffrey Wakefield, [email protected], 802.656.2005
Vera Chang, [email protected], 917.846.1865

Burlington, Vermont. May 13, 2014. This week, Vermont’s Greater Burlington Region received official designation as a Regional Center of Expertise (RCE) on Education for Sustainable Development by the United Nations University Institute for Advanced Studies of Sustainability. The region, which includes the Vermont portion of the Lake Champlain Basin, is one of 136 RCEs worldwide, and one of only five in the United States. A network of worldwide RCEs aspire to achieve the goals of the Global Action Programme for Sustainable Development by translating its global objectives into the context of the local communities.

The Greater Burlington Region is being recognized for its collaborative and groundbreaking education for sustainability programs, such as the University of Vermont’s service-learning partnerships with local schools and NGOs; Shelburne Farms’ education program, the Sustainable Schools Project; among others.

This designation will allow the Greater Burlington Region to network with and learn from other RCEs around the world that are documenting promising practices in education for sustainability. The University of Vermont and Shelburne Farms are co-coordinating the effort to create a Greater Burlington RCE multi-stakeholder network of educators, NGOs, government, business leaders, students, faith groups, and community members. There will be a launch celebration in early October 2015 at Shelburne Farms. To get involved in the Greater Burlington RCE, contact co-coordinator Tom Hudspeth at [email protected] or Megan Camp at [email protected].


About University of Vermont

Founded in 1791, the University of Vermont is one of the nation’s oldest and most respected research universities. Its strong tradition of liberal education integrates the humanities, the arts and the sciences to promote broad and deep learning. A Public Ivy, UVM is well known for academic strength in the liberal arts, environment, healthcare, leadership and public service. The university has been nationally recognized for its commitment to equality, diversity and inclusivity.

About Shelburne Farms

Shelburne Farms is a nonprofit organization educating for a sustainable future. The Farm collaborates with educators, schools, and other partners to advance education for sustainability in Vermont, nationally, and internationally. In addition to offering on-site education and community programs, Shelburne Farms plays a leadership role in professional development programs for educators in the Sustainable Schools Project, a Forest for Every Classroom, and a Watershed for Every Classroom. Shelburne Farms also supports other leading-edge educational initiatives, including the National and Vermont Farm to School Networks, Vermont Food Education Every Day, and the Farm-Based Education Network. The nonprofit is supported by charitable contributions, as well as its program-support enterprises: a grass-based dairy and award-winning farmstead cheese-making operation, an organic market garden, maple sugaring and sustainable lumber production, special events, and an internationally-recognized seasonal inn and farm-to-table restaurant. Based on the shores of Lake Champlain in Shelburne, Vermont, Shelburne Farms’ campus for learning is a 1,400-acre working landscape and National National Historic Landmark. Shelburne Farms serves over 150,000 program participants and visitors annually on-site alone.