Green Is Our Color

At FIT, sustainability is a core value that infuses every aspect of the college—from curriculum to campus operations and architecture to the daily decisions we make.

FIT has made a strong and visible commitment to sustainability leadership. Our goal is to change thinking and practice, show that sustainability is possible for a large institution, and provide a model for other organizations. We recognize that sustainability extends into related areas such as corporate social responsibility, ethics, and fair trade.

As educators, we hope to inspire students to act. They are already passionate about creating a better future, and we give them the skills and knowledge to become drivers of sustainability in their fields. In many ways, they are already taking the lead.


sustainable initiatives at FIT

Unconventional Solutions

We face vast challenges that need big solutions. The creative industries design and make products using materials and practices that can harm the environment and the people who produce them. Since FIT helps shape those industries, we have a responsibility to reimagine their future. We offer opportunities for like-minded—and different-minded—people to come together in innovative partnerships that spark new ideas and develop viable solutions.

We provide resources that support teaching and learning, research, and activities around sustainability. Participants include students, faculty, alumni, industry partners, and the public. Initiatives include our annual Sustainable Business and Design Conference, the Center for Innovation and DTech Lab, and an increasing emphasis on sustainability in the curriculum.

sustainability curriculum at FIT

Sustainability: A Core Value

Sustainability became a focus at FIT as faculty, students, and administrators increasingly expressed concern about climate change and about campus and industry operations that were harming the environment. The college’s Strategic Plan committed to instituting sustainable practices and reducing FIT’s carbon footprint. The first annual Sustainable Business and Design Conference was held in 2007, and President Brown established the FIT Sustainability Council in 2008. The council organizes the conference, develops initiatives throughout the community, and awards grants to support campus projects.

student in FIT sustainability course

Sustainability Studies

Become an environmentally conscious, creative, and strategic thinker through our academic programs. Develop insights into sustainable principles and practices, and learn to think and act purposefully to create change.

Minors, Certificates, and Courses

student sewing for FIT sustainability initiatives

Get Involved

As a member of the FIT community—students, faculty, and staff—you can find opportunities to take action to promote and further sustainability on campus and beyond.

Opportunities for Students

Opportunities for Faculty and Staff

Commitment to a Greener Campus

As a large urban campus, FIT recognizes that our infrastructure, architecture, and operations offer many opportunities to integrate sustainable practices and reduce our carbon footprint. Since being the first institution among New York’s colleges and hospitals to meet (and exceed) the 2007 Mayor’s Carbon Challenge, FIT has continually expanded its initiatives, from installing green roofs to using better materials and equipment in construction and renovation projects to recycling efforts on campus.

Conferences and Events

FIT organizes and hosts events that promote sustainability awareness and practice.

Start With a Seed

FIT’s Natural Dye Garden and Muslin Composting System started out as ideas. FIT students made them real.

It’s hard to know what seed you’re planting in their minds, but hopefully these future designers will become more conscious of where material comes from and where it goes.

Lydia Baird

Textile Development and Marketing ’16, part of the Muslin Composting System, used for FIT's dye garden
Lydia Baird working on muslin composting system

Learn more about part of the Natural Dye Garden and Muslin Composting System, used for FIT’s dye garden

Sustainability Resources

Beyond campus, see what you can do in the area and elsewhere.