$25 – $150

Net Positive Symposium for Higher Education

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R. W. Kern Center at Hampshire College

893 West St

Amherst, MA 01002

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Please join us at Hampshire College for the Net Positive for Higher Education Symposium—focused on inspiring, educating, and igniting action that creates a Living Future within Higher Education Institutions.

Higher education institutions have long been centers of innovation, research, and leadership, integral in shaping our society and culture. So, what better place than college and university campuses to create the most innovative and forward-thinking communities?

Campuses in Western Massachusetts – Hampshire College, Smith College, and Williams College--are on the forefront of transformation. These institutions, with others in the area, have been early adopters of the Living Building Challenge and the Living Community Challenge. The Net Positive for Higher Education Symposium will highlight these campuses and their holistic, multi-generational approach to sustainability, resiliency, health, innovation, and equity.

Attendees will explore case studies from these campuses to understand the design, development, and implementation of these living laboratories.

This symposium is for campus planners, sustainability directors, faculty, administrators, operations staff, students, and design and construction professionals.

If you are invloved in higher education in one of these industries, you should attend!

  • Architects
  • Engineers
  • Consultants
  • Contractors
  • Facility Managers
  • Educators/Curriculum Planners
  • Professors
  • Sustainability Professionals
  • Policy/Government
  • Campus or Urban Planners

Schedule At-a-Glance

June 25, 2018

2:00-5:00 PM Registration Open

3:00-5:00 PM Combined Tours: R.W. Kern Center and Hitchcock Center for the Environment tour available as a separate registration for $25 (not included in Symposium ticket)

6:00-8:00 PM Dinner - At the Red Barn on the Hampshire College campus, featuring remarks by Jonathan Lash. Tickets available for $55 as a separate registration (not included in Symposium ticket) Click this link to see dinner menu

June 26, 2018

8:30-8:30 AM Continental Breakfast in the R.W. Kern Center
8:30-9:00 AM Opening Remarks and Keynote: Amanda Sturgeon + Bill Kern
9:00-9:15 AM Transition Time
9:15-10:30 AM Break Out Sessions #1 – Three Tracks
10:30-10:45 AM Transition Time
10:45-12:00 PM Breakout Sessions #2 – Three Tracks
12:00-1:00 PM Lunch, Dining Commons
1:00-2:30 PM Break Out Sessions #3 – Three Tracks
2:30-2:45 PM Transition Time
2:45-4:45 PM Creating Action Plans – Small Group Working Session
4:45-6:00 PM Making Commitments + Defining Next Steps with cocktails and hors d’ouerves in the R.W. Kern Center Foyer


If you have questions about travel or accommodations while visiting Hampshire College, please consult the links below. Note that you will have to either utilize a rental car, car share, or bus to get from your hotel to the Kern Center. If you have futher questions, do not hesitate to contact us at events@living-future.org



Campus Map:


June 25, 2018 from 3:00PM - 5:00PM

R.W. Kern Center and Hitchcock Center Tours

Come explore the R.W. Kern Center and its systems from the inside out! See how rainwater is collected, filtered, and treated to supply the building's potable water. Check out the greywater system to learn how wastewater is collected, distributed to the indoor plants for filtration, and sent outdoors to a constructed wetland. We’ll lift the hood on the composting toilets, kick the tires on the rooftop solar, and see how we keep tabs on where the electricity goes. We'll also take look at the finishes and materials that make up a Living Building, and some clever and puzzling details you might miss on a casual walk-through. This tour is an authentic account of what makes our Living Building tick- the challenges, setbacks, and successes.

Also included in the tour package: come meet the Hitchcock Center for the Environment's newest educator – their building! This 9,000 square foot LBC-registered project is designed to model systems in nature. It is net zero energy, net zero water, and has been made with responsibly sourced non-toxic materials. Designed to be a teaching tool, the project includes educational displays for Pre-K through adult learners, explaining the composting toilets, potable rainwater harvest and treatment, and greywater systems. Check out the Hitchcock Center's website for a preview.


June 25, 2018 from 6:00PM - 8:00PM

Featuring Hampshire College President Jonathan Lash, at the Red Barn (separate ticket required $55)

Come enjoy a great locallly-sourced dinner at the Red Barn on the Hampshire College.

  • Za’atar Chicken Over Sautéed Farm Center Greens with Fresh Herbs and Arugula
  • Farm Center Green Salad with Seasonal Vegetables with Vegan/Gluten Free Balsamic Vinaigrette
  • Warm Lentil Salad with Tahini Dressing
  • Spiced Baked Tofu- Spring Bean Salad
  • Either: Apple and Local Berry Crisp with Local Whipped Cream (Served or Buffet) OR Plated Local Berry Shortcake with Local Whipped Cream

Bar Service: House Beer and Wine Only - Includes 2 drink tickets per guests. Cash bar after drink tickets used.

There are a number of interesting and inspiring Living Building and Net Zero Energy projects in the area. Check them out or set up a tour while you're here!

Smith College Bechtel Environmental Classroom (LBC Certified), South Deerfield, MA

Mass Division of Fisheries and Wildlife Field Headquarters (Net Zero), Westborough, MA

Williams College Kellogg House (LBC Petal Certified), Williamstown, MA

Bristol Community College Sprega Health and Sciences Building (Net Zero), Fall River, MA

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R. W. Kern Center at Hampshire College

893 West St

Amherst, MA 01002

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