Overall Rating Silver - expired
Overall Score 49.84
Liaison Adrienne Schwarte
Submission Date Feb. 12, 2016
Executive Letter Download

STARS v2.0

Maryville College
AC-8: Campus as a Living Laboratory

Status Score Responsible Party
Complete 4.00 / 4.00 Adrienne Schwarte
Associate Professor of Design, Coordinator of Sustainability Studies Minor
Fine Arts & Sustainability Studies
"---" indicates that no data was submitted for this field

Is the institution utilizing the campus as a living laboratory for multidisciplinary student learning and applied research in the following areas?:
Yes or No
Air & Climate Yes
Buildings Yes
Dining Services/Food Yes
Energy Yes
Grounds Yes
Purchasing Yes
Transportation Yes
Waste Yes
Water Yes
Coordination, Planning & Governance Yes
Diversity & Affordability Yes
Health, Wellbeing & Work Yes
Investment Yes
Public Engagement Yes
Other Yes

A brief description of how the institution is using the campus as a living laboratory for Air & Climate and the positive outcomes associated with the work:

Vending misers installed on the MC campus at numerous vending machines on campus. Students, interning with a TN Valley Authority (TVA) EnergyRight Solutions in Higher Education (TVA ERSHE) project, led the installation project and helped to show energy reductions. This helped MC continue to support the City of Maryville reduce GHG emissions and reverse the regional air quality non-compliance ruling it received a few years prior.

Maryville College was a November 2015 signatory for the American Campuses Act on Climate Pledge, committing to actions to reduce campus air pollutants.


A brief description of how the institution is using the campus as a living laboratory for Buildings and the positive outcomes associated with the work:

The Anderson Hall renovation projects (MC's oldest building, home for the humanities, languages and literature departments) incorporated energy efficiency upgrades and sustainability features. While not officially seeking Leadership in Energy and Environmental Design (LEED) certification on the building, green-building practices were followed as budgets permitted. Additionally, students in the ENV/PLS345: Environmental Politics course undertook course projects that provided structural and building interior sustainability suggestions.
The Lucid (TM) interactive energy screens located on campus provide real-time energy consumption data that students, staff, faculty and prospective students can use and learn from, regarding campus energy use.


A brief description of how the institution is using the campus as a living laboratory for Dining Services/Food and the positive outcomes associated with the work:

Maryville College students have served as sustainability interns for the Metz Dining Services at MC and are involved in developing composting programs, the Food Recovery Network and integrating more sustainable dining resources, energy efficiency in the dining services and local food purchasing; the Food Recovery Network has received local press coverage and over 500 pounds of food has been recovered and donated so far to significantly reduce food waste.


A brief description of how the institution is using the campus as a living laboratory for Energy and the positive outcomes associated with the work:

Student involved in environmental studies theses and those associated with the Tennessee Valley Authority (TVA) grant received at MC worked with LUCID data screens to collect and analyze data regarding energy usage in MC buildings and to target ways that reductions could be made;

The Maryville College steam plant uses, as its fuel stock, unused wood chips and wood debris from local timber/lumber operations, along with discarded wood pallets used to transport materials to/from loading docks.

Maryville College purchases TVA Green Power Switch (TM) green energy credits that have helped TVA fund renewable energy generation projects.


A brief description of how the institution is using the campus as a living laboratory for Grounds and the positive outcomes associated with the work:

MC students have been involved in thesis research and class projects to discover the most enviromentally-friendly ways to remove invasive species from the Maryville College Woods.

Fruit trees planted in the MC Woods and next to Crawford House will provide shade, a food source for local wildlife and a future food source for Metz dining.

Maryville College has a tree-replacement policy to insure the non-MCW campus grounds has living trees and a consistent campus tree canopy.

A MCW 100-Year Plan was written by the MC Woods Group to insure the 140 acre MC Woods (which comprise 1/2 of the MC campus footprint) is well and sustainably managed.


A brief description of how the institution is using the campus as a living laboratory for Purchasing and the positive outcomes associated with the work:

Maryville College Physical Plant continues to implement its green cleaning purchasing program, where environmentally-friendly cleaning supplies and equipment are used by MC Housekeeping.


A brief description of how the institution is using the campus as a living laboratory for Transportation and the positive outcomes associated with the work:

Bike Racks are installed throughout the MC campus to encourage human-powered intra-campus transportation.

Sustainability Airfare Grants (SAGs) were provided for selected students who participated in study abroad trips sponsored by MC. The SAGs covered airfare, and were given to students who would focus on experience/learning/reporting on sustainable activities in their host country.


A brief description of how the institution is using the campus as a living laboratory for Waste and the positive outcomes associated with the work:

Marvyille College continues to operate its wood chip plant to create steam heat and hot water for the campus. The steam plant was created as a cogeneration biomass demonstration project for the 1982 Knoxville TN World's Fair. The plant's fuel comes from unused wood chips from local timber/lumber operations and from discarded wood pallets from area loading docks.


A brief description of how the institution is using the campus as a living laboratory for Water and the positive outcomes associated with the work:

Student energy efficiency interns purchased and installed a number of water refill stations on campus to reduce plastic bottle usage and to date, there have been at least 50,000 bottles saved due to the integration of these refill stations;


A brief description of how the institution is using the campus as a living laboratory for Coordination, Planning & Governance and the positive outcomes associated with the work:

Two campus sustainability groups, the MC Woods Group and the Campus Sustainability Group (CSG) have staff, faculty and student membership and interact with multiple campus offices and stakeholders in preparing reports and investigating issues.

Sustainability related surveys, using online questionnaire platforms [e.g. Survey Monkey (TM)] have been created by students, faculty and staff with good responses.


A brief description of how the institution is using the campus as a living laboratory for Diversity & Affordability and the positive outcomes associated with the work:

Campus provides online Financial Aid night web-stream, to assist current and prospective students/families learn more about college affordability. The College's Villamaria program and Great Smokies Experience program provide connections to local/regional Hispanic leaders and high school students respectively, including scholarship opportunities to attend GSE.


A brief description of how the institution is using the campus as a living laboratory for Health, Wellbeing & Work and the positive outcomes associated with the work:

Maryville College commitment to the November 2015 signatory for the American Campuses Act on Climate Pledge include wellness commitments by the MC community, building on the 90 for 90 exercise/wellness commitment of the campus in 2014-2015.


A brief description of how the institution is using the campus as a living laboratory for Investment and the positive outcomes associated with the work:

Beyond public access to MC's investment portfolio and occasional review/analysis of the college investments in business classes;


A brief description of how the institution is using the campus as a living laboratory for Public Engagement and the positive outcomes associated with the work:

Sustainability Tours are provided to campus and local community members. The approximately 45-minute tour showcases the range of sustainable energy, climate science and education projects undertaken at the College.

The College interacts on environmental sustainability projects with the City of Maryville, TN (Pistol Creek Wildlife Refuge) and Great Smoky Mountains Institute at Tremont - GSMIT).


A brief description of how the institution is using the campus as a living laboratory in Other areas and the positive outcomes associated with the work:

Maryville College faculty and students provide social activist art and design projects to local non-profit organizations.


The website URL where information about the institution’s campus as a living laboratory program or projects is available:

The information presented here is self-reported. While AASHE staff review portions of all STARS reports and institutions are welcome to seek additional forms of review, the data in STARS reports are not verified by AASHE. If you believe any of this information is erroneous or inconsistent with credit criteria, please review the process for inquiring about the information reported by an institution and complete the Data Inquiry Form.