Learn From A Leader

Grand Valley State University’s (GVSU) Custodial Team was recently recognized with the 2018 Green Cleaning Award presented by Healthy Schools Campaign and American School & University Magazine. They took the grand award in the higher education category. GVSU is based in Allendale, Michigan and serves approximately 25,000 students.  The custodial team is responsible for cleaning approximately 4,000,000 square feet of buildings on campus, of which 1.7 million is LEED certified.  GVSU Custodial Team is 106 strong and led by four department supervisors.

In an interview with Healthy School Campaign officials, Ed Wierzbicki, GVSU Facilities Supervisor and spokesperson for the team (interview can be read here) contributed their recent success to two main implementations: adopting lean principles (mainly the 5S component of lean) and orbital technology for floor care. Both of those implementations have saved the university resources and money while improving their service to their customers.

Ed was invited to participate in a Healthy School Campaign webinar to talk about GVSU’s program. In an hour-long webinar Ed shares details of their program; why and how they implemented and maintain it. Ed also invited Nichols team members (myself and Mike Steers, Director of Equipment Sales and Service) that assisted in implementing lean and orbital technology at GVSU to join him on this webinar and we each were able to share a more in-depth details.  Lean principles go hand-in-hand with sustainability and Grand Valley State University has definitely embraced and the pay-off is grand.