Overall Rating Silver
Overall Score 60.69
Liaison Elizabeth Drake
Submission Date March 6, 2020

STARS v2.2

Swarthmore College
PA-3: Inclusive and Participatory Governance

Status Score Responsible Party
Complete 1.50 / 3.00 Melissa Tier
Sustainability Program Manager
Office of Sustainability
"---" indicates that no data was submitted for this field

Does the institution have formal participatory or shared governance bodies through which the following stakeholders can regularly participate in the governance of the institution?:
Yes or No
Students Yes
Academic staff Yes
Non-academic staff Yes

A brief description of the institution’s formal participatory or shared governance bodies:

As a historically-Quaker institution, Swarthmore prides itself on its collaborative decision-making structures. Swarthmore has many governance bodies and committees, including the following:

Committees of the Board of Managers, and in particular the Social Responsibility Committee: this committee is "charged with reflecting upon the College's commitment, in association with the fulfillment of its institutional mission, to prepare and motivate students to engage issues of social responsibility facing our communities and societies and to set their own paths as responsible citizens toward shaping a more inclusive, just, and compassionate world." Representative Managers, faculty, staff, students, and Alumni Council members sit on this committee.

A range of committees that support faculty, staff, student, and alumni concerns. There are about 30 committees to which faculty may be appointed, many of which also involve staff at all levels as well as students. (See the list here: https://www.swarthmore.edu/provosts-office/faculty-committees). Staff also have the Staff Advisory Council (made up of 18 elected staff members and reporting to the President & VP of Human Resources) and the Administrative Advisory Council (made up of departmental directors and reporting to President's Staff). Students have a robust Student Government Organization that includes working groups that meet regularly with staff/faculty partners. Finally, Alumni Council serves the College's alumni network and ties them to the College administration.

Additionally, we have a number of sustainability-focused committees and working groups:

Ecosphere Executive Committee: Considers the recommendations presented by the Sustainability Committee, the Crum Woods Stewardship Committee, and all subsidiary working groups, and takes action based on those recommendations. When proposals exceed the purview of the Executive Committee, it will make recommendations to the President’s staff.

Sustainability Committee: The purpose of the Sustainability Committee (SusCom) of Swarthmore College is to make recommendations to the President and to the College community regarding policies to promote environmental sustainability on campus. The Committee focuses on identifying policies and practices that promote the most efficient and responsible use of College resources; monitoring funds and grants pertaining to environmental sustainability; and coordinating and support campus sustainability initiatives and efforts. SusCom reports recommendations to the Ecosphere Executive Committee.

Carbon Charge Working Group: The Carbon Charge Working Group manages the Carbon Charge Program and allocates funding generated by the Charge to sustainability projects that advance the College’s carbon neutrality mission. The Carbon Charge Working Group reports recommendations to the Sustainability Committee.

Zero Waste Working Group: The Zero Waste Working Group oversees the College's various Zero Waste commitments related to environmental justice, waste reduction, and diversion away from incineration/landfill. The group is involved in myriad ongoing operational and educational projects. The Zero Waste Working Group reports recommendations to the Sustainability Committee.

Food Initiatives Working Group: The Food Initiatives Working Group supports the College's growing commitments to a healthy, equitable food system that enhances the well-being of our community and supports our sustainability goals. The group is involved with several campus vegetable gardens, student internships, and community partnerships. The Food Initiatives Working Group reports recommendations to the Sustainability Committee.

Crum Woods Stewardship Committee: The Crum Woods Stewardship Committee is a committee of faculty, students, and administrators with the goal of creating a protection, restoration, and stewardship plan for Crum Woods. The planning effort will begin with an evaluation of biodiversity, teaching and recreational resources in the context of the College's educational mission and its commitment to social responsibility. The Crum Woods Stewardship Committee reports recommendations to the Ecosphere Executive Committee.


Total number of individuals on the institution’s highest governing body:
34

Number of students representing their peers as official members of the institution’s highest governing body:
0

Number of academic staff representing their peers as official members of the institution’s highest governing body:
0

Number of non-academic staff representing their peers as official members of the institution’s highest governing body:
0

Number of women serving as official members of the institution’s highest governing body:
16

Percentage of official members of the highest governing body that are women:
47.06

Website URL where information about the institution’s highest governing body may be found:
Does the institution host or support one or more formal bodies through which external stakeholders have a regular voice in institutional decisions that affect them?:
No

A brief description of the campus-community council or equivalent body that gives external stakeholders a regular voice in institutional decisions that affect them:
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Number of people from underrepresented groups serving as official members of the institution’s highest governing body.:
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Website URL where information about the institution’s governance structure is available:
Additional documentation to support the submission:
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The information for this credit was assembled by representatives from the Office of Sustainability.

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.