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Report Card 2010

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Rhodes College
College Sustainability Report Card 2010

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Rhodes College

School details:

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Endowment: $230 million as of June 30, 2008

Location: Memphis, Tennessee

Enrollment: 1,671

Type: Private


Campus Survey: Yes (see response)

Dining Survey: Yes (see response)

Endowment Survey: Yes (see response)

Student Survey: Yes (see response)


Data compiled from independent research. For information on data collection and evaluation, please see the Methods section.

Overall grade  
B -
Rhodes' sustainability policy aims to incorporate sustainability into college operations and campus life. The Environmental Planning Committee oversees sustainability initiatives on campus. The college has developed a purchasing policy that incorporates environmental considerations into purchasing decisions for appliances, electronics, office supplies, and janitorial products. President Troutt has signed the Presidents' Climate Commitment.
Rhodes has conducted a greenhouse gas emissions inventory. The college produces some electricity with photovoltaic panels on campus and purchases 543,000 kilowatt-hours of renewable energy credits each year. The college recently held a campaign to encourage faculty and staff to purchase green power for their homes. As a result, 73 units of green power were purchased from the local power company.
Rhodes' dining services purchases seafood that meets Monterey Bay Aquarium Seafood Watch guidelines as well as hormone- and antibiotic-free cheese, chicken, and beef. All coffee purchased by the college is fair trade-certified. Biodegradable, recycled dishware is available, and the college has eliminated Styrofoam containers from its dining facilities. The college also recycles used cooking oil.
Rhodes' formal green building policy is nearing completion. The college has installed low-flow showerheads and faucets in all campus buildings to reduce water consumption.
The new Environmental Studies Living/Learning Community was developed through the cooperation of the physical plant, the residential life office, and several academic departments to provide sustainability-themed housing for 20 students. The student group Green Rhodes engages students with issues related to environmental sustainability. Student environmental residents serve as resources and encourage their peers to live more sustainably.
Rhodes recently held a transportation contest that awarded prizes to faculty and staff who commuted to campus using alternate modes of transportation. The college also has a student-run bicycle-sharing program. The college's new master plan seeks to make Rhodes' central campus more pedestrian-friendly by removing parking spaces and adding sidewalks and landscaping.
The college makes a list of all holdings available to trustees, senior administrators, and other select members of the school community. The college also makes a list of external managers available to the public at the investment office or sends this information upon request. The college does not make the shareholder voting record of its mutual funds public.
The college aims to optimize investment return and is currently invested in renewable energy funds. The college is currently considering investment policy provisions that take into account environmental/sustainability factors.
The college does not have the ability to vote proxies, as the entire endowment is invested in mutual funds.
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