Overall Rating Silver
Overall Score 63.76
Liaison Levi Rogers
Submission Date March 10, 2017
Executive Letter Download

STARS v2.1

Skidmore College
EN-3: Student Life

Status Score Responsible Party
Complete 2.00 / 2.00 Levi Rogers
Sustainability Coordinator
Sustainability 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:

The Sustainability Committee (SuCo) is the primary student committee responsible for educating and collaborating with students, the Student Government Association (SGA), faculty, staff, and administration with the intent to advance the College's commitment to sustainability. SuCo devotes itself to embracing the social, economic, and environmental pillars of sustainability by implementing policies that address campus challenges. SuCo will help coordinate and support student, faculty, staff, and administrative groups that work on sustainability-based initiatives. This group channels student voice, ideas, and concerns into the development of Skidmore's sustainability efforts by working closely with the Sustainability Office, the Campus Sustainability Subcommittee, and any other relevant groups. This committee helps streamline student efforts and campus initiatives addressing the goals of the Campus Sustainability Plan. SuCo ultimately integrates student insight and propose policy recommendations to encourage Skidmore to reach its full potential while advocating for an inclusive, sustainable community.

The Environmental Action Club (EAC) is a student-based group committed to sustainability initiatives on campus, in the community, nationally, and worldwide. EAC’s goal is a 100% clean energy future, and an ecologically, socially, and economically just world. To work towards this goal, the EAC focuses on four general themes - energy, transportation, waste, and food issues. They plan events, campaigns, projects and more around these issues to generate awareness and inspire change.

SkidEats is Skidmore’s student-run sustainable food group, focusing on all things food related. The group organizes events to bring awareness to our local, regional, national, and international food systems.


The website URL where information about the student groups is available (optional):
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:

In April 2009, volunteers from the Environmental Action Club, with the support of Facilities Services, broke ground to create the Skidmore College Student Garden. In 2014, there was an opportunity to bring the garden to a more central, visible location on campus. Students, staff, and faculty worked together to find a suitable location for the new garden and chose Wiecking Green. The new location is more accessible, visible, and inviting to our campus community and visitors of the College. Students also chose to rename the garden to the Skidmore Community Garden, representative of the garden's mission to be an inclusiveness space for all. Students, staff, faculty, and other community members are always welcome to enjoy the garden space as a place for rest, reflection, fun, and learning.

The garden supplies local food, grown using organic practices, to Skidmore's dining hall. It facilitates a connection to, and appreciation for, the food that we eat, and offers hands-on learning opportunities for the Skidmore community. The garden provides an outlet for community members interested in environmental issues, social justice, and economic development to learn about the local food movement and the ecology of food. The garden has produced over 5,000 lbs of food since 2009. The garden hosts an annual Harvest Dinner each fall that serves over 250 meals made almost entirely of locally-sourced food and coordinates a spring fundraising concert called Beats for Beets.


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:

Skidmore Feelgood- Feelgood youth movement committed to ending world hunger in our lifetime. FeelGood students run non-profit delis specializing in grilled cheese sandwiches. 100% of deli proceeds are invested in organizations sustainably eradicating global hunger.

The programs coordinated through the Sustainability Office (BikeMore, Community Garden, Compost, Sustainability Representatives, and North Woods Stewards,) are all student-run enterprises. For instance, the garden manager is involved in budget management and coordinates invoices, payments, and garden expenses during the growing season.


The website URL where information about the student-run enterprises is available (optional):
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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:

Geopalooza- The two-day event focused on geothermal heat pumps (GHP) as a way to heat and cool buildings and reduce fossil fuel reliance. Attendees heard from cutting-edge technical and policy experts on how GHPs can minimize greenhouse gas emissions and reduce energy bills. Another focus of the event was net zero buildings, where GHPs and renewable electricity combine to eliminate all greenhouse gas emissions. This conference was open to the public and students.

Skidmore Unplugged, the College's annual three-week energy reduction competition, always includes a series of energy-related lectures and dialogues with sustainability leaders, community organizers, and faculty members. The 2015 Skidmore Unplugged series included keynote lectures with former government officials, regional community organizers, and included dialogues and panel discussions between faculty, staff, and students.


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 Tang Teaching Museum organizes numerous events and exhibitions related to sustainability. Examples include:
-Classless Society, an exhibition that questions how one might think about class today in the current social and economic context, including the availability (or not) of class mobility and the different ways that class is signaled and understood.
- Affinity Atlas, which included the exhibition of Leaning Skeleton by Vik Muniz, and a screening of Waste Land, which charts an inspiring project between the artist (Vik Muniz) and individuals who gathered recyclable materials in landfills. The movie was screened in downtown Saratoga Springs and was followed by a community discussion.


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 Skidmore College Outing Club organizes outing trips nearly every weekend during the academic year. Outings include rock climbing, hiking, snow boarding, camping, and more. The Outing Club increases access to outdoor activities by providing necessary equipment to anyone in need. Club members help decide and plan each trip. The purpose of the club is to provide all students with the opportunity to take part in a variety of activities in the outdoors and to make professional training available to those who wish to further their knowledge of wilderness skills.


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:

One-quarter of the Human Dilemmas first-year seminar focuses on humans in relation to the natural world. Learning objectives push students to explore: Who am I?; What exactly am I?; What is my relationship to others?; and What is my responsibility to them and to the world?. "Human Dilemmas" challenge students’ conventional assumptions surrounding these predicaments as we focus our attention on interdisciplinary readings, critical thinking, and academic inquiry. Debates, field trips, and writing will move us toward an understanding of what it means to be human in our contemporary world.


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:

Each student-run program provides our students with opportunities to learn sustainable life skills. For instance, Skidmore Unplugged provides opportunities for students to learn how to adopt more sustainable habits, our compost program teaches students how to manage food waste, and our garden program teaches students how to grow food and manage a sustainable business.


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

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

The Sustainability Office offers 15 paid student leadership positions each semester and offers three paid student positions during the summer. Student positions include Compost Manager, North Woods Steward, BikeMore Manager, Community Garden Manager, Sustainability Representative, and Sustainable Dining Communications Manager.


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?:
No

A brief description of the graduation pledges:
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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:

Feedmore- Feedmore is a hunger-relief program that collects surplus food from the Skidmore dining hall and delivers it to local soup kitchens and food pantries. The program delivered over 3,500 lbs. of food to local service organizations since 2014.

Divest Skidmore- Divest Skidmore is a student-led campaign bringing awareness to the impacts of the fossil fuel industry and seeks to push the College toward fossil fuel divestment.  


The website URL where information about other co-curricular sustainability programs and initiatives is available (optional):
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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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