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Report Card 2011

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Villanova University
College Sustainability Report Card 2011

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Villanova University

School details:

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Endowment: $298 million as of June 30, 2010

Location: Villanova, Pennsylvania


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  
A -
Villanova has incorporated sustainability into its master and strategic plans and recently passed a climate action plan. The President's Environmental Sustainability Committee coordinates initiatives with all campus departments, and six employees spend a portion of their time overseeing sustainability efforts. A green purchasing policy seeks to minimize waste and pollution in purchasing decisions.
Villanova aims to reduce greenhouse gas emissions 24 percent from 2009 levels by 2025. To save energy, the university has implemented temperature setbacks and has installed temperature control timers, heat recovery systems, and high-efficiency lighting. The campus features a geothermal well, and the university purchases renewable energy credits equivalent to 5 percent of its electricity use.
Dining services spends 34 percent of its food budget on local and organic items, and purchases mostly cage-free eggs, hormone- and antibiotic-free milk, and sustainably harvested seafood. To reduce waste, half of campus dining facilities are trayless; most food waste is composted; and almost all dishware is reusable or compostable. The university recycles electronics in addition to traditional materials.
All new construction and renovation projects at Villanova must be built to LEED Silver standards. The campus has one LEED Gold building, another that meets LEED standards, and three that meet LEED-EB criteria. Dual-flush toilets, waterless urinals, and low-flow showerheads have been installed on campus to save water.
The Nature and the World Learning Community engages students in a year-long living and learning program centered on sustainability. New student orientation features sustainability presentations by environmentally focused student groups, of which there are several. The university employs two paid interns to work on sustainability initiatives.
Villanova provides a free shuttle on campus and to points of interest in the surrounding community, and staff can purchase subsidized public transportation passes with pretax dollars. Seventy-five percent of students commute to campus using environmentally preferable transportation, and the university’s master plan commits to making the campus more pedestrian friendly.
The university makes a list of all endowment holdings available to trustees, senior administrators, and other select members of the school community. Only asset allocation information is available to the public online. A list of votes cast on proxy resolutions on a company-specific level is available to the entire school community on a password-protected website.
The university aims to optimize investment returns, and the endowment is currently invested in renewable energy funds. The university also uses investment managers who consider environmental and sustainability factors.
An advisory committee with one student, seven faculty members, and two administrators makes proxy voting recommendations to the board of trustees.
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