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To better understand how to create an environmentally sustainable program, Osher Lifelong Learning Institute, or OLLI, at Auburn participated in a sustainability assessment in December 2021. In January, the Office of Sustainability provided OLLI with a summary report and a query about what their office could do to help OLLI strategize for a more sustainable campus. On May 4, staff members from the Office of Sustainability delivered 96 settings of flatware, serving utensils and 36 mugs to OLLI headquarters at Sunny Slope.

“OLLI member Ursula Higgins had recently donated a commercial dishwasher to us, and we had acquired all the dishes and glassware we needed from Surplus Property,” said Scott Bishop, director at OLLI. “But we were still using plastic eating utensils, and no matter how much we tried to wash them, they always eventually ended up in the trash. The stainless flatware, plus the ceramic coffee mugs are going to go a long way toward making our events and day to day operations more environmentally friendly.”

In addition to incorporating reusable kitchenware, OLLI is doing its best to use less paper, keep the lights off in rooms that are not in use and they have added plants to all the offices, making a healthier, calmer and prettier environment.

OLLI is a membership program in the Office of the Vice President for University Outreach. Its mission is to enrich the lives of senior adults by providing opportunities to engage with ideas, each other and our community. For more information, email or call 334-844-3146.

The Office of Sustainability affirms the university’s commitment to sustainability as a core value and guiding principle for its operations, instruction, research and outreach. It seeks to create an ethic, culture and practice of sustainability at Auburn. If your office is interested in taking part in a sustainability assessment like OLLI, please contact the Office of Sustainability at or 334-844-7777.