Senior thesis research and written by Winter Heath '11.
In the past six years the University of Vermont (UVM) Eco-Reps Program has become well-established among a small group of faculty and students. However, there has been a general consensus among these individuals that the program lacks a strong presence among the on-campus community. Further, recent research by Christina Erickson, a former UVM doctorate student, concluded the UVM Eco-Reps Program suffers from a lack of visibility and awareness.
This thesis builds off of the research of Erickson to identify the awareness challenges the program faces, analyze the relationship between the Eco-Reps Program and the UVM on-campus community, and discover the most effective way for the Eco-Reps Program to enhance on-campus outreach and communications practices. A variety of methods were used including surveys, interviews and focus groups, and an evaluation of Eco-Rep programs across the nation.
This research found a gap between the passion and knowledge of individual Eco-Reps and their ability to communicate messages effectively to the UVM on-campus community, greatly impacting the program‟s influence and visibility. This research addressed these issues by redesigning the UVM Eco-Reps logo and creating a comprehensive guidebook that provides future Eco-Reps with the tools and resources needed to effectively connect with their peers.