Overall Rating Gold
Overall Score 67.20
Liaison Suzanne Hansen
Submission Date May 31, 2017
Executive Letter Download

STARS v2.1

Macalester College
EN-3: Student Life

Status Score Responsible Party
Complete 2.00 / 2.00 Suzanne Savanick Hansen
Sustainability Manager
Macalester Sustainbility Office
"---" indicates that no data was submitted for this field

Does the institution have one or more active student groups focused on sustainability?:
Yes

A brief description of active student groups focused on sustainability:

Descriptions from the different Organization's own websites.
MacCares (Macalester Conservation and Renewable Energy Society) focuses on student projects and practical implementation. MacCares works to bring the way we live into alignment with the ideals we hold.

MacBike is a student-run organization at Macalester College that promotes bicycle-use both on campus and in the greater Twin Cities community. MacBike supports bicycling as a fun, sustainable, and socially just form of transportation.

MULCH (Macalester Urban Land and Community Health) is a student group with a mission to educate Macalester and the surrounding community about urban agriculture, environmental justice, food and gardening. MULCH maintains a garden on the Macalester campus and provides fresh produce to Cafe Mac. The recent addition of chickens has also brought with it the opportunity to further teach small scale urban agriculture.

MacFeast is a new student organization that works on food and food justice issues.

MPIRG (Minnesota Public Interest and Research Group): Student-run advocacy group that deals with issues from health to the environment.


The website URL where information about the student groups is available (optional):
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Does the institution have gardens, farms, community supported agriculture (CSA) or fishery programs, and/or urban agriculture projects where students are able to gain experience in organic agriculture and sustainable food systems?:
Yes

A brief description of the gardens, farms, community supported agriculture (CSA) or fishery programs, and/or urban agriculture projects:

MULCH, Macalester Urban Land and Community Health, is a student group with a mission to educate Macalester and the surrounding community about urban agriculture, environmental justice, food and gardening. MULCH maintains a garden on the Macalester campus and provides fresh produce to Cafe Mac and occasional pop-up farmer's markets.

The recent addition of urban chickens has also brought with it the opportunity to further teach small scale urban agriculture.


The website URL where information about the gardens, farms or agriculture projects is available (optional):
Does the institution have student-run enterprises that include sustainability as part of their mission statements or stated purposes (e.g. cafés through which students gain sustainable business skills)?:
Yes

A brief description of the student-run enterprises:

The Live It Fund is a project of the Institute for Global Citizenship Student Council. The fund seeks to empower Macalester students to embrace the living definitions of global citizenship on our campus and in the wider world. Previously the Live It! Fund made possible the efforts of Macalester students to launch an urban farm in southern Minneapolis. The farm, Concrete Beet Farmers, is run under the Community Sustainable Agriculture (CSA) model and recently shipped their first crop.

Additionally, the Macalester MULCH garden sells its surplus produce to Bon Appetit.


The website URL where information about the student-run enterprises is available (optional):
Does the institution have sustainable investment funds, green revolving funds or sustainable microfinance initiatives through which students can develop socially, environmentally and fiscally responsible investment and financial skills?:
No

A brief description of the sustainable investment funds, green revolving funds or sustainable microfinance initiatives:
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The website URL where information about the sustainable investment funds, green revolving funds or sustainable microfinance initiatives is available (optional):
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Does the institution have conferences, speaker series, symposia or similar events related to sustainability that have students as the intended audience?:
Yes

A brief description of the conferences, speaker series, symposia or similar events related to sustainability:

The Macalester Civic Forum and International Roundtable are major campus events and sustainability can be one of the topics of the forum. The International Roundtable in 2016 was focused on urban sustainability.

The Environmental Studies department hosts a regular EnviroThursday speaker series.


The website URL where information about the conferences, speaker series, symposia or similar events related to sustainability is available (optional):
Does the institution have cultural arts events, installations or performances related to sustainability that have students as the intended audience?:
Yes

A brief description of the cultural arts events, installations or performances related to sustainability:

The Sustainability Small Project Fund supported a student art thesis in spring 2014. The Sustainability Small Project fund also supported an art showing on the Bakken oil fields, Sarah Christiansen's "When the Landscape is Quiet Again" in 2016. In 2017, Richardo Morales gave a talk on "Art As Activism and Medicine".


The website URL where information about the cultural arts events, installations or performances is available (optional):
Does the institution have wilderness or outdoors programs (e.g. that organize hiking, backpacking, kayaking, or other outings for students) that follow Leave No Trace principles?:
Yes

A brief description of the wilderness or outdoors programs that follow Leave No Trace principles:

The Outing Club offers adventure in the great outdoors through inexpensive trips, reasonable gear rental and expedition-planning assistance. Student led trips are offered minimally each Fall and Spring break. The Outing Club hosts workshops specific for winter camping, low impact camping, and invites the Wilderness Medicine Institute to host first aid courses.

Macalester also offers a pre-orientation outdoor program for incoming freshman. Macward Bound seeks to provide shared experiences in which new students will experience supportive community, relationship building and reflection in an experiential outdoor environment.


The website URL where information about the wilderness or outdoors programs is available (optional):
Does the institution have sustainability-related themes chosen for themed semesters, years, or first-year experiences (e.g. choosing a sustainability-related book for common reading)?:
Yes

A brief description of the sustainability-related themes chosen for themed semesters, years, or first-year experiences:

Every month the sustainability office has a theme for their publicity, events, and newsletter. The themes are based on the United Nations Conference on Sustainable Development. .


The website URL where information about the sustainability-related themes is available (optional):
Does the institution have programs through which students can learn sustainable life skills?:
Yes

A brief description of the programs through which students can learn sustainable life skills:

The Macalester model dorm room was started in 2010 by a sustainability student worker and she held an open house in 2011. The Sustainability Office now hosts her collected information on its website along, with guides for "Green Renters" and "Sustainability in the Kitchen", documents written by former EcoHouse residents. The Sustainability Office also hosted a canning workshop with the Center for Religion and Spiritual Life.


The website URL where information about the sustainable life skills programs is available (optional):
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Does the institution offer sustainability-focused student employment opportunities?:
Yes

A brief description of the sustainability-focused student employment opportunities offered by the institution:

A Sustainability Student Worker Network supports students working on sustainability-related student employment in departments across the campus.


The website URL where information about the student employment opportunities is available:
Does the institution have graduation pledges through which students pledge to consider social and environmental responsibility in future job and other decisions?:
Yes

A brief description of the graduation pledges:

Since 2000, Environmental Studies students have organized the "Senior Graduation Pledge" for commencement. The graduates state: "I pledge to explore and take into account the social and environmental consequences of any job I consider and will try to improve these aspects of any organization for which I work." Taking the pledge is voluntary; students determine for themselves what they consider to be socially and environmentally responsible. The students who pledge wear a green ribbon on their graduation gown.


The website URL where information about the graduation pledges is available (optional):
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Does the institution have other co-curricular sustainability programs and initiatives?:
Yes

A brief description of the other co-curricular sustainability programs and initiatives:

The Sustainability Plan has an entire section on Education Outside the Classroom.


The website URL where information about other co-curricular sustainability programs and initiatives is available (optional):
Estimated percentage of students (full-time and part-time) that participate annually in sustainability-focused co-curricular education and outreach programs (0-100):
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Additional documentation to support the submission:
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