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Report Card 2010

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California Institute of Technology

Student Survey

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With the publication of the College Sustainability Report Card 2010, more than 1,100 school survey responses from over 300 institutions are now available online. In total, these surveys offer more than 10,000 pages of data collected from colleges and universities during the summer of 2009 . To access surveys from other schools, go to the  surveys section  of the website. To see grades, or to access additional surveys submitted by this school, please click the "Back to Report Card" link at the beginning or end of the survey.

 

Name: Morgan Putnam
Position (in student organization): Founder
Date survey submitted: 7/21/09

STUDENT ORGANIZATIONS
1) Please describe the student-run campus environmental/sustainability organization in which you have a leadership role.
Name of organization: Caltech Student Solar Initiative
Number of active members: 10
Website: http://caltechstudentsolar.pbworks.com/
Date of last meeting: 6/26/09
Frequency of meetings: varies based on status of project (usually bi-weekly)
Key issues addressed and programs implemented since August 2008:
Progress made on each issue/program since August 2008:

A key goal for California's educational institutions is not only to create a sustainable future for our campuses, but also to engage, involve, and educate students along the way.  The Caltech Student Solar Initiative (CSSI) is pleased to announce the completion of a 14 kW solar installation, which was initiated, designed, and built by students with the support of Caltech's Facilities Department.  The array design and installation provided 100 students, ~ 5% of the Caltech student-body, with the opportunity to discover the challenges and opportunities associated with the use of photovoltaics to meet society’s energy demand.  The array will provide Caltech with an estimated 25,000 kWh of green energy annually and will provide a revenue source for future student sustainability projects through the sale of renewable energy credits (RECs.)  Members of the CSSI hope to inspire similar projects at campuses across the state. 

By taking responsibility for the site selection, detailed array layout, financial analysis, competitive bidding process, city solar rebate application, and procurement of funds in addition to the task of recruiting and managing 100 volunteers during a three-day installation, the CSSI was able to maximize all of the possible learning opportunities available in the installation of a photovoltaic array.  As an example, the CSSI gained considerable experience in site selection.  What may appear to be the ‘perfect’ roof is likely to have potentially serious drawbacks to the untrained eye.

The CSSI combined a city rebate, funding from a student life grant and funding from Caltech Facilities in order to cover the $118,000 installed cost of the photovoltaic array.  By combining these funding sources, the CSSI was able to halve the payback time on the Caltech Facilities investment.  This reduction allowed Caltech Facilities to make an investment that they would not have otherwise been able to make.

            Integral to the success of the array installation was strong support from Caltech Facilities.  By working closely with the CSSI, Caltech Facilities helped the CSSI to avoid potential dead-ends in site selection and array design.


SUSTAINABILITY CHALLENGES AND COMPETITIONS
2) Does your group organize any sustainability challenges/competitions for your campus and/or with other colleges?
[ X ]  No
[  ]  Yes. Please list details for each competition.
#1 - Name of competition:
Year initiated:
Frequency of competition:
Participants:
Incentives:
Goal of competition:
Percent of energy/water/waste reduced:
Lasting effects of competition:
Website:

#2 - Name of competition:
Year initiated:
Frequency of competition:
Participants:
Incentives:
Goal of competition:
Percent of energy/water/waste reduced:
Lasting effects of competition:
Website:

SUSTAINABILITY IN STUDENT GOVERNMENT
3) Does your student government include a specific position or committee dedicated to campus sustainability issues?
[  ]  No
[ X ]  Yes. Please describe: This past fall the position of a Sustainability Officer was created with Graduate Student Council (GSC).  Additionally, the GSC updated it's mission statement to directly state its commitment to sustainability and adopted sustainability standards which the Sustainability Officer is charged with enforcing.

OTHER ACTIVITIES
4) Please describe any additional campus sustainability activities or projects that you or your group has initiated at your school:  

5) Please list and briefly describe any other student-run organizations related to campus sustainability at your school, and provide URLs if available (e.g., student groups; student government committees; student-run food co-ops, gardens/farms, bike co-ops) and provide contact information of the student leaders, if possible:  
http://sustainability.caltech.edu/clubs


Questions 6 is for informational purposes only; your response will NOT be included in the Report Card evaluation process.

6) Please list any regional or national networks with which your group is affiliated (e.g., Energy Action Coalition/Campus Climate Challenge, Sierra Student Coalition, a state PIRG, a state student sustainability coalition):

 

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Name: Danielle V. Brown
Position (in student organization): Graduate Student Council Sustainability Advocate
Date survey submitted: 7/21/09

STUDENT ORGANIZATIONS
1) Please describe the student-run campus environmental/sustainability organization in which you have a leadership role.
Name of organization: Graduate Student Council
Number of active members: 25
Website: http://gsc.caltech.edu

Date of last meeting: 6/18/09
Frequency of meetings: weekly
Key issues addressed and programs implemented since August 2008:
Progress made on each issue/program since August 2008:

health care, graduate student housing and stipends, advocating for graduate students at the administrative level, especially under-represented students, supporting academic events for graduate students, supplying organized social activities to create an active graduate student community, generally informing graduate community of campus events and endeavors, including sustainability initiatives


SUSTAINABILITY CHALLENGES AND COMPETITIONS
2) Does your group organize any sustainability challenges/competitions for your campus and/or with other colleges?
[ X ]  No
[  ]  Yes. Please list details for each competition.
#1 - Name of competition:
Year initiated:
Frequency of competition:
Participants:
Incentives:
Goal of competition:
Percent of energy/water/waste reduced:
Lasting effects of competition:
Website:

#2 - Name of competition:
Year initiated:
Frequency of competition:
Participants:
Incentives:
Goal of competition:
Percent of energy/water/waste reduced:
Lasting effects of competition:
Website:

SUSTAINABILITY IN STUDENT GOVERNMENT
3) Does your student government include a specific position or committee dedicated to campus sustainability issues?
[  ]  No
[ X ]  Yes. Please describe: The Sustainability Advocate is a graduate student on the Graduate Student Council (GSC) elected to increase awareness of sustainability issues, to help the GSC adopt more sustainable practices, and to liaise with other groups on campus.

OTHER ACTIVITIES
4) Please describe any additional campus sustainability activities or projects that you or your group has initiated at your school:   I have taken part in Earth Day, although this is a joint effort by many groups around campus.  In the fall, as Sustainability Advocate I hosted a graduate student social hour devoted to raising awareness of other sustainability groups on campus and to try to get people to think about sustainability in their daily lives and simple efforts they can take, like bringing reusables to events with food and drinks, turning off lights, recycling, etc.

5) Please list and briefly describe any other student-run organizations related to campus sustainability at your school, and provide URLs if available (e.g., student groups; student government committees; student-run food co-ops, gardens/farms, bike co-ops) and provide contact information of the student leaders, if possible: http://sustainability.caltech.edu/clubs


Questions 6 is for informational purposes only; your response will NOT be included in the Report Card evaluation process.

6) Please list any regional or national networks with which your group is affiliated (e.g., Energy Action Coalition/Campus Climate Challenge, Sierra Student Coalition, a state PIRG, a state student sustainability coalition):

 

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Name: Richard Wang
Position (in student organization): Historian
Date survey submitted: 7/21/09

STUDENT ORGANIZATIONS
1) Please describe the student-run campus environmental/sustainability organization in which you have a leadership role.
Name of organization: Engineers for a Sustainable World
Number of active members: 5
Website: http://esw.caltech.edu

Date of last meeting: 6/30/09
Frequency of meetings: twice a month
Key issues addressed and programs implemented since August 2008:

1. Make A Difference Day: The Giving Garden, 4/11/09

2. Earth Day, 4/24/09
Progress made on each issue/program since August 2008:

1. Helped to maintain sustainable urban vegetable garden, made several improvements

2. Organized and promoted a panel discussion on sustainable careers and a movie screening


SUSTAINABILITY CHALLENGES AND COMPETITIONS
2) Does your group organize any sustainability challenges/competitions for your campus and/or with other colleges?
[ X ]  No
[  ]  Yes. Please list details for each competition.
#1 - Name of competition:
Year initiated:
Frequency of competition:
Participants:
Incentives:
Goal of competition:
Percent of energy/water/waste reduced:
Lasting effects of competition:
Website:

#2 - Name of competition:
Year initiated:
Frequency of competition:
Participants:
Incentives:
Goal of competition:
Percent of energy/water/waste reduced:
Lasting effects of competition:
Website:

SUSTAINABILITY IN STUDENT GOVERNMENT
3) Does your student government include a specific position or committee dedicated to campus sustainability issues?
[  ]  No
[ X ]  Yes. Please describe: Caltech Undergraduate Sustainability Project

"CUSP works to raise awareness about issues of waste, consumption and product composition and to provide solutions to related problems. Their goal is to foster sustainability projects, financing, and research in a directed fashion, particularly in conjunction with the core curriculum. One of their current projects is trying to produce ethanol using cellulose-based agriwaste produced during the normal operation of campus." from  http://sustainability.caltech.edu/clubs

OTHER ACTIVITIES
4) Please describe any additional campus sustainability activities or projects that you or your group has initiated at your school:  

E/ME 105: Product Design for the Developing World

This class was initiated by former members of ESW and has been highly successful. It has been taught every year since then, and it has also spawned Intelligent Mobility, the famous bicycle to wheelchair project. 


5) Please list and briefly describe any other student-run organizations related to campus sustainability at your school, and provide URLs if available (e.g., student groups; student government committees; student-run food co-ops, gardens/farms, bike co-ops) and provide contact information of the student leaders, if possible:  Comprehensive information on student-run sustainability organizations at Caltech can be found at:  http://sustainability.caltech.edu/clubs


Questions 6 is for informational purposes only; your response will NOT be included in the Report Card evaluation process.

6) Please list any regional or national networks with which your group is affiliated (e.g., Energy Action Coalition/Campus Climate Challenge, Sierra Student Coalition, a state PIRG, a state student sustainability coalition):  Engineers for a Sustainable World

 

 

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