About the SCALe Program

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Venus fly trap plants zoomed in through a magnifying glass.

The Sustainability and Climate Applied Learning (SCALe) program situates Duke University as a living backdrop for sustainability and climate change education, anchoring learners and educators with a local yet scalable perspective of these concepts in the place where we study, work, live and play.

The SCALe program cultivates transformative learning collaborations between students, faculty and staff to address real-world challenges and opportunities at Duke.

SCALe experiences take shape at the intersections of social and physical campus activity, hands-on education, service, applied research and community engagement. 

Learning from the world around us through experiential and applied approaches is a compelling way to understand complex issues and interact with real life implications of climate change and sustainability topics.

The SCALe program seeks to:

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Four people work together as a team to carry a tarp full of mulch while people shovel a pile of mulch in the background while outside on a sunny day.
  1. Catalyze sustainability and climate applied learning experiences both in and out of the classroom.
  2. Bridge connections for impactful learning between Duke students, faculty and staff to investigate real-world campus needs.
  3. Foster a campus learning community to share ideas and best practices for exploring Duke as a living learning laboratory.

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Pathways for Staff

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Sustainability and Climate Applied Learning in Action

  • Place-based and project-based experiential learning opportunities position students to make a positive impact on global challenges at a local scale that feels relevant and offers a sense of belonging and purpose.
  • From real challenges and campus case studies, students can build skills around data collection and analysis, reporting, community outreach, stakeholder engagement, co-creation, reflection and more.
  • Interacting with the campus as a “Living Learning Laboratory” gives students a glimpse of change management, innovation and teamwork principles.
  • The outputs of real-world learning efforts can advance support and tangible outcomes for Duke. From developing new engagement programs to making suggestions that support the evolution of campus operations, students have always played an integral role in advancing Duke's sustainability progress.

More Information

The SCALe program operates on a rolling basis in alignment with the goals of the Duke Climate Commitment.

Questions? Email Emily Bilcik, Assistant Director of Sustainability and Climate Applied Learning.