SAN FRANCISCO—The 14th annual California Higher Education Sustainability Conference (CHESC) will take place at San Francisco State University from July 20 to July 24.

The four-day event gathers over 1,000 representatives from colleges and universities from across the nation to share information and present research, as well as discuss curriculum development, operational programs and community partnerships. The theme of this year’s conference is “Can We Change Fast Enough?”

van jones
CNN Political Contributor and keynote speaker Van Jones.

A keynote speech will be given on Tuesday, July 21 by Van Jones, former Green Jobs Advisor to President Obama, best-selling author and CNN Political Contributor.  Jones is also the founder of the Ella Baker Center for Human Rights, a non-government organization dedicated to “[advancing] racial and economic justice to ensure dignity and opportunity for low-income people and people of color,” and Green For All, a national organization focused on increasing green jobs in disadvantaged communities.

The conference will also showcase the winners of the Higher Education Energy Efficiency and Sustainability Best Practice Awards, a competition which honors the best sustainability projects, proposals, and initiatives at both the UC and CSU campuses.

SF State has recently implemented green initiatives like planting drought-resistant vegetation, installing water-bottle filling stations and utilizing “three-bin” waste management systems. According to a university press release, the campus has reduced its annual water consumption by roughly one third since 2007. All students are required to take at least one course on sustainability before graduating. The university is currently on The Princeton Review’s list of 353 Green Colleges.

“At SF State, sustainability is a value that we are putting into practice in all parts of campus, from the classroom to the residence halls to our grounds,” said SF State Director of Sustainability and Energy Caitlin Steele.

In 2014, SF State hosted its fourth annual Campus Sustainability Day on October 22.

To view the schedule of events, directions to campus and more information, visit the conference’s website.