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Report Card 2011

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Davidson College
College Sustainability Report Card 2011

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Davidson College

School details:

Endowment: $430 million as of June 30, 2010

Location: Davidson, North Carolina


Campus Survey: Yes (see response)

Dining Survey: Yes (see response)

Endowment Survey: Yes (see response)

Student Survey: Yes (see response)


Please note: Data was collected in summer 2010 and may no longer be current.


Data compiled from survey responses, when available, and from independent research, when needed. For more information on data collection and evaluation, please see the  Methodology section.

Overall grade  
B +
Davidson College's master and strategic plans include sustainability components, and the Sustainability Council recently worked to complete a climate action plan. A sustainability fellow coordinates environmental initiatives on campus. The college purchases only Energy Star-qualified appliances and EPEAT Gold-certified computers.
The college has committed to reduce greenhouse gas emissions 10 percent from 2008 levels by 2020. Temperature setbacks have been implemented, and the campus features steam line insulation and energy-efficient lighting in all buildings. Energy management systems are utilized in 80 percent of buildings, and economizers and system tune-ups have been implemented in 75 percent of buildings.
Exclusively fair trade coffee is served on campus. The dining halls offer some local food, as well as produce from an on-campus garden. Pre- and postconsumer food scraps are composted at 90 percent of meals, and bottled water has been removed from dining facilities. All landscaping waste is mulched, and an exchange program for office supplies is available.
All new buildings meet LEED Silver standards. The campus includes two LEED-certified buildings and one building that meets LEED criteria, and eight spaces have been repurposed for alternative use since 2000. Low-flow showerheads have been installed in 90 percent of buildings, and some buildings feature low-flow faucets and dual-flush toilets. Non-potable water is used in irrigation.
Students at Davidson have worked on composting and recycling in residence halls, and advocated for purchasing energy-generating elliptical machines and local food. Eco House is home to students interested in living sustainable lifestyles, and there is an eco-rep in every dorm. An annual competition encourages students to reduce resource use.
A free shuttle runs to local shopping areas three days a week, and the college provides a bike-sharing program and bike repair services. Nearly a quarter of employees commute via environmentally preferable methods. The master plan prioritizes a pedestrian-friendly campus, and most parking lots are located on the edge of campus.
The college makes a list of all holdings available to trustees and senior administrators. A list of asset allocation and external managers, as well as mutual fund, equity, fixed income, real estate, natural resource, and cash holdings, is available on a password-protected website to the entire school community. The college does not make the shareholder voting record of its mutual funds public.
The college aims to optimize investment returns, and the endowment is currently invested in renewable energy funds.
The college is unable to vote proxies, as the entire endowment is invested in mutual funds or other commingled investment vehicles.
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