Overall Rating Expired
Overall Score Expired
Liaison Rob Andrejewski
Submission Date Feb. 15, 2016
Executive Letter Download

STARS v2.0

University of Richmond
PA-2: Sustainability Planning

Status Score Responsible Party
Complete Expired Rob Andrejewski
Director of Sustainability
Office for Sustainability
"---" indicates that no data was submitted for this field

Does the institution have current and formal plans to advance sustainability in the following areas? Do the plans include measurable objectives?:
Current and Formal Plans (Yes or No) Measurable Objectives (Yes or No)
Curriculum Yes No
Research (or other scholarship) Yes No
Campus Engagement Yes No
Public Engagement Yes No
Air and Climate Yes Yes
Buildings Yes Yes
Dining Services/Food No No
Energy Yes Yes
Grounds Yes No
Purchasing Yes No
Transportation Yes Yes
Waste Yes Yes
Water Yes No
Diversity and Affordability Yes Yes
Health, Wellbeing and Work No No
Investment No No
Other No No

A brief description of the plan(s) to advance sustainability in Curriculum:

Educational goals in the Climate Action Plan: All students should attain environmental literacy, learning alternatives to the current, non-sustainable paradigm that permeates society; A course on the concepts of sustainability taught as a prerequisite for graduation; Develop a wellness course that links health and environmental sustainability; An orientation presentation for new hires similar to the one proposed for entering students will be created; SPCS will offer its first Global Sustainability Institute, a weeklong program that brings together undergraduate and graduate students as well as local business leaders and sustainability professionals to learn about the impact of global sustainability practices and issues; A faculty development program should be developed.


The measurable objectives, strategies and timeframes included in the Curriculum plan(s):

While measurable goals with metrics have not been set in this area, 65 sustainability courses have been identified (over a three-year period), a wellness course was taught for multiple semesters, sustainability is included in both student and staff orientation, SPCS continues to offer sustainability-related courses and certificate programs, and the faculty development program (River City Project) has been offered continuously since 2013.


Accountable parties, offices or departments for the Curriculum plan(s):

The Environmental Awareness group, with support from the Office for Sustainability, is the main driver of curricular change on campus.


A brief description of the plan(s) to advance sustainability in Research (or other scholarship):

From the 2010 Climate Action Plan: "Topics in sustainability issues can be offered as options to students to meet individual course research goals or as independent research... Internal funding may be available to support research into areas that would directly help the University achieve its climate neutrality targets. Interested students will also receive the opportunity to intern with appropriate departments to work on specific sustainability initiatives. Potential internship opportunities exist in the areas of campus recycling, campus energy use, and behavior change initiatives.


The measurable objectives, strategies and timeframes included in the Research plan(s):

While no formal program has been developed, student living lab research projects have developed and informed sustainability progress on campus. Evidence of these can be found in AC-5.


Accountable parties, offices or departments for the Research plan(s):

The Environmental Awareness group, with support from the Office for Sustainability and the Sustainability Working Group, is responsible for research integration.


A brief description of the plan(s) to advance Campus Engagement around sustainability:

From the 2010 Climate Action Plan: Establishment of a green pledge, creation of a Green Office Program, participation in student-centered energy competitions, expanding content on the UR sustainability website, development of recycling and conservation outreach campaigns, collaboration with the Center for Civic Engagement


The measurable objectives, strategies and timeframes included in the Campus Engagement plan:

While measurable objectives have not been established in this area, a green pledge, the Green Office Program, participation in Campus Conservation Nationals, a strong online presence, various outreach campaigns and bolstered partnership with the Center for Civic Engagement have all come to fruition.


Accountable parties, offices or departments for the Campus Engagement plan(s):

The Office for Sustainability and Sustainability Working Group


A brief description of the plan(s) to advance Public Engagement around sustainability:

From the 2010 Climate Action Plan: "Since its inception in 2004, the CCE has led the efforts to connect UR students to the greater Richmond community, working primarily in the social aspects of sustainability. CCE has also fostered interdisciplinary study throughout its endeavors. To further expand opportunities for students in sustainability, CCE and the Environmental Sciences program could develop educational programs that concentrate on urban health, including urban forestry and ecology and the intersections between public health and sustainability. Further collaboration with other universities similar to the efforts between UR and VCU at UR Downtown also could be fostered through the CCE."


The measurable objectives, strategies and timeframes included in the Public Engagement plan(s):

The Center for Civic Engagement is a strong ally and guidepost for sustainability, especially in public engagement and diversity. Most recent evidence of the leadership role of the CCE in the University's sustainability efforts are the creation of the Environmental Justice Think Tank and mentorship from the CCE to leaders in the Envision the James group.


Accountable parties, offices or departments for the Public Engagement plan(s):

The Office for Sustainability and Sustainability Working Group.


A brief description of the plan(s) to advance sustainability in Air and Climate:

From the 2010 Climate Action Plan: The University of Richmond’s goal is to reduce greenhouse gas emissions 30% by 2020 and 100% by 2050.

+ Date Revised: May 3, 2016

The measurable objectives, strategies and timeframes included in the Air and Climate plan(s):

The University completed its first greenhouse gas (GHG) audit in 2009, and the findings of that audit provide the baseline data that the University will use to measure progress regarding emissions reductions.
2020 - 30% below 2008 levels
2035 - 65% below 2008 levels
2050 - 100% below 2008 levels


Accountable parties, offices or departments for the Air and Climate plan(s):

Facilities, the Office for Sustainability and Sustainability Working Group.


A brief description of the plan(s) to advance sustainability in Buildings:

From the 2010 Climate Action Plan: The University has committed to a goal that all new campus construction meet a minimum of U.S. Green Building Council (USGBC) created the Leadership in Energy and Environmental Design (LEED) Silver standards.

+ Date Revised: May 3, 2016

The measurable objectives, strategies and timeframes included in the Buildings plan(s):

100% of new campus buildings must meet LEED Silver standards or better.


Accountable parties, offices or departments for the Buildings plan(s):

Facilities and the Office for Sustainability.


A brief description of the plan(s) to advance sustainability in Dining Services/Food:

Dining is a leader in sustainability on campus, but no formal plans have been established.


The measurable objectives, strategies and timeframes included in the Dining Services/Food plan(s):

n/a


Accountable parties, offices or departments for the Dining Services/Food plan(s):

n/a


A brief description of the plan(s) to advance sustainability in Energy:

The 2010 Climate Action Plan called for the followng: Create an Energy Policy to address seasonal building temperature set-points and operating ranges; Switch from coal to cleaner-burning natural gas to fuel the steam plant; Install individual building meters; Expanding University Purchasing Sustainability; Complete the replacement of all T-12 fluorescent lighting on campus with T-8 and T-5 versions; Construct Net-Zero Energy Buildings; Solar or other renewable are installed onsite to meet 1% of electrical demand by 2015 and 5% by 2020; Retrofits will achieve a 20% reduction in energy use across campus by 2020; Installing meters to track chilled water, electricity, and steam in all campus buildings; Participate in STARS (Sustainability Tracking Assessment, and Reporting System) and complete an annual emissions inventory to measure overall progress.


The measurable objectives, strategies and timeframes included in the Energy plan(s):

Solar or other renewable are installed onsite to meet 1% of electrical demand by 2015 and 5% by 2020; Retrofits will achieve a 20% reduction in energy use across campus by 2020;

Completed, though no measurable goals: Completed primary fuel has switched to natural gas; installed first onsite renewable energy system (10 kW photovoltaic array and solar thermal panels) in the fall of 2011; In the spring of 2011, the University engaged Eneractive Solutions in a campus-wide energy audit; producing a list of 90 potential energy conservation measures to invest in on campus; Renovation of the Robins Center included a complete transition to LED lighting in the arena


Accountable parties, offices or departments for the Energy plan(s):

The Office for Sustainability and Facilities


A brief description of the plan(s) to advance sustainability in Grounds:

The Campus Master Plan has adopted sustainability as one of its 5 themes: "The University of Richmond is committed to environmental sustainability and is addressing the challenge head-on, from education to conservation, purchasing policies to land management. Naturally, this issue is of importance in the planning process. Master planning has potential influence on campus sustainability in three primary areas: energy, transportation, and water."


The measurable objectives, strategies and timeframes included in the Grounds plan(s):

The plan metrics are completed/not completed. Projects related to natural resource management, open space, stormwater runoff, non-motorized transportation, and inclusion have been completed.


Accountable parties, offices or departments for the Grounds plan(s):

Facilities.


A brief description of the plan(s) to advance sustainability in Purchasing:

From the 2010 CAP: Procurement and Strategic Sourcing will build on its existing Energy Star purchasing policy to ensure that all appliances are the most energy efficient possible. Procurement and Strategic Sourcing also will look to take advantage of any opportunities that could make these purchases more affordable.


The measurable objectives, strategies and timeframes included in the Purchasing plan(s):

While there is a green purchasing policy now in place, there are no measurable objectives tied to it.


Accountable parties, offices or departments for the Purchasing plan(s):

Purchasing and Office for Sustainability.


A brief description of the plan(s) to advance sustainability in Transportation:

From the 2010 Climate Action Plan: The University set goals to (1) create maps showing bike and pedestrian routes on campus; (2) Create signage to identify walking and cycling paths; (3) Review a policy on telecommuting for faculty and staff; (4) Conduct periodic audits to determine fleet vehicle condition; (5) Institute a policy prohibiting drivers from idling vehicles on campus; (6) Purchase fuel efficient vehicles for the campus fleet; (7) Creation of bikeshare program

+ Date Revised: May 3, 2016

The measurable objectives, strategies and timeframes included in the Transportation plan(s):

There are no measurable objectives; however some progress has been made. No-idling policy is in place for trucks and buses; 30 electric carts and 2 hybrid cars purchased; bikeshare expanded.


Accountable parties, offices or departments for the Transportation plan(s):

Transportation, Recreation & Wellness, and Office for Sustainability.


A brief description of the plan(s) to advance sustainability in Waste:

From the 2010 Climate Action Plan: To meet the overall goal of climate neutrality, UR must commit to creating a “zero-waste” campus. The University will divert all waste from landfills through improved recycling, reuse and source reduction measures, all bolstered by education and marketing campaigns and new policies.


The measurable objectives, strategies and timeframes included in the Waste plan(s):

To achieve this zero waste goal by 2030, an average increase in waste diversion of 3.3% per year is needed.


Accountable parties, offices or departments for the Waste plan(s):

Facilities and the Office for Sustainability


A brief description of the plan(s) to advance sustainability in Water:

Campus hydrology, stormwater management, maintenance of a healthy Westhampton Lake, Riparian buffers, water conservation, and water quality issues are all addressed in the Campus Master Plan.


The measurable objectives, strategies and timeframes included in the Water plan(s):

No measurable objectives have been established.


Accountable parties, offices or departments for the Water plan(s):
---

A brief description of the plan(s) to advance Diversity and Affordability:

The Richmond Promise, the University of Richmond Strategic Plan, principles 2 and 3 address diversity and affordability.
Principle II: The University of Richmond will be a diverse and inclusive community,
strengthened intellectually and socially by the range of knowledge, opinion, belief, and political perspective and background of its members, whether of race, ethnicity, gender, sexual orientation, ability status, age, religious, economic, or geographic origin. Students will therefore be prepared to contribute to a diverse and global society.

Principle III: The University will be accessible and affordable for students who can most benefit from, and contribute to, the educational environment.


The measurable objectives, strategies and timeframes included in the Diversity and Affordability plan(s):

From the Richmond Promise
Principle II: Goal 1: Ensure an open and inclusive campus environment that welcomes and
benefits from people of diverse backgrounds, encourages the exchange of ideas from diverse perspectives, promotes social and academic interaction among people from a broad range of backgrounds, promises full access to places and programs, and opposes intolerance and educates against exclusion, so as to prepare students to function effectively in a diverse community.
Action Steps:
II. 1. (i). Provide targeted funding to expand and market multicultural social events, create more physical spaces that encourage informal interactions, and support initiatives that promote inclusivity.
II.1. (ii). Conduct an independent review of the university’s accessibility (both physical and
programmatic) for persons with disabilities and implement needed changes.
II. 1. (iii). Assess cost/benefit of establishing cultural advisor positions in the residences halls, the Law School, and the School of Continuing Studies.
II.1. (iv) Recognize staff and faculty who promote diversity and inclusivity in their professional activities through University compensation and reward systems.
II. 1. (v). Provide a confidential point of contact for students, faculty, and staff to express
concerns and to help ensure that their concerns are addressed appropriately.
Principle II: Goal 2: Recruit and retain faculty, staff, and senior management with substantially increased proportion of underrepresented minorities, so as to attain the critical mass needed for a diverse community.
Action Steps:
II. 2. (i). Establish a policy and employ a full range of methods (including opportunity funds as appropriate) for hiring a diverse workforce at all levels.
II. 2. (ii). Evaluate vice presidents, deans, chairs, and staff supervisors on their efforts and results in building diverse workforces.
II. 2. (iv). Establish community-building opportunities for new hires with new hires at other area colleges and universities, including partner hire programs.
II. 2. (v). Provide incentives for faculty to develop courses and non-credit programs that enhance learning about non-majority groups and cultures.
Principle II: Goal 3: Recruit, retain, and graduate a student body with a substantially increased proportion of currently underrepresented minorities, so as to strengthen the learning environment and to expand the university’s reach.
Action Steps:
II. 3. (i). Establish a summer ”signature” conference for talented, underrepresented minority rising sophomore and junior high school students.
II. 3. (ii). Train students and alumni to serve as “Admission Partners,” assisting in the
recruitment and yield of prospective underrepresented minority students through on-and-offcampus programs.
Principle III: The University will be accessible and affordable for students who can most benefit from, and contribute to, the educational environment.

The University of Richmond is committed to ensuring that its education is accessible to
academically talented, diverse, and engaged students and to providing students a transformative experience. To increase its access and affordability, the University will need not only to implement innovative programs, but will also need to ensure that students and their families are fully aware of the opportunities available to them. The following goals and action steps are intended to take the University to a new level of access and affordability.
Principle III: Goal 1: Recruit, retain, and graduate a student body with a substantially increased proportion of low-income and first-generation students, so as to strengthen the learning environment and to ensure that the University is accessible to the highest quality students regardless of their means or background.
Action Steps:
III. 1. (i). Review current admission policies to consider the pros and cons of moving to an
optional standardized test admission policy; expanding articulation agreements with Virginia Community Colleges; and changing the University’s policies regarding credit for Advanced Placement, International Baccalaureate and dual enrollment credit to ensure that our credit policies do not discourage students from applying to and enrolling at the University.
III. 1. (ii). Offer support and assess the effectiveness of innovative and affordable pre-college programs targeted to select high school students to increase their interest in and preparedness for success at the University of Richmond.
III. 1. (iii). Expand partnerships with organizations (e.g. Posse Foundation, Questbridge) that assist in increasing the enrollment of low-income, first-generation, and / or underrepresented minority students.
III.1. (iv). Offer support and assess the effectiveness of programs aimed at assisting
underrepresented minority, first-generation college, and low income students to be retained and graduated at or above the rates of the student population as a whole.
III.1. (v) Recognize staff and faculty efforts to recruit, retain, and graduate low-income and first generation students.
Principle III: Goal 2: Invest in making the University more affordable to low-income and
modest-income students and in making its pricing policies and costs to families transparent and understandable, so as to increase the number of students from families in those categories.
Action Steps:
III. 2. (i). Develop and fund a new need-based financial aid program which will guarantee
traditional domestic undergraduate students that they will not pay more than a specified amount for tuition, room, and board, based on their family income (up to $150,000).
III. 2. (ii). Develop and fund a new need-based financial aid program for Virginia traditional
domestic undergraduate students with total family income of $125,000 or less so as to make the cost of attending the University of Richmond more competitive with the Commonwealth’s public universities.
III. 2. (iii). Expand the financial aid budget for international students, with the objective of
increasing enrollment of international students to 10 percent of the fall undergraduate entering class by 2014.
III. 2. (iv). Provide two scholarships (tuition and room/board) per school district for outstanding students from the Richmond, Chesterfield, Petersburg, Hanover, and Henrico public school districts, who meet specified criteria.
III. 2. (v). Reduce student indebtedness in the Law School by expanding targeted financial aid.
III. 2. (vi). Extend University financial aid support to enable the School of Continuing Studies to meet 100 percent of demonstrated financial need of evening college students and to fund scholarships for SCS students working in the public sector and non-profits.
III. 2. (vii). Extend University financial aid support to complement the G.I. Bill grant aid so that all eligible veterans can enroll tuition free.
III. 2. (viii). Design a marketing campaign to ensure awareness and transparency of the
University’s pricing policies for families.


Accountable parties, offices or departments for the Diversity and Affordability plan(s):

Office of the President, Common Ground, Multicultural Affairs, Center for Civic Engagement.


A brief description of the plan(s) to advance sustainability in Health, Wellbeing and Work:

There is no formal plan, but Human Resources and Recreation and Wellness have partnered together to make employee wellness a top campus priority for faculty and staff at the University of Richmond. Their goal is to provide resources for the whole person, as demonstrated in the eight dimensions of wellness, adapted from the Substance Abuse and Mental Health Services Administration (SAMHSA).


The measurable objectives, strategies and timeframes included in the Health, Wellbeing and Work plan(s):

N/A


Accountable parties, offices or departments for the Health, Wellbeing and Work plan(s):

N/A


A brief description of the plan(s) to advance sustainability in Investment:

N/A


The measurable objectives, strategies and timeframes included in the Investment plan(s):

N/A


Accountable parties, offices or departments for the Investment plan(s):

N/A


A brief description of the plan(s) to advance sustainability in other areas:

N/A


The measurable objectives, strategies and timeframes included in the other plan(s):

N/A


Accountable parties, offices or departments for the other plan(s):

N/A


The institution’s definition of sustainability:

The University has not adopted a formal definition of sustainability; however, the Office for Sustainability's website states "sustainability means pursuing solutions that lend themselves to the possibility that human and other life can thrive in perpetuity."


Does the institution’s strategic plan or equivalent guiding document include sustainability at a high level?:
No

A brief description of how the institution’s strategic plan or equivalent guiding document addresses sustainability:

While strong sustainability is not addressed by the current strategic plan, the Richmond Promise, the University of Richmond Strategic plan is built upon core pillars of social sustainability and community engagement.


The website URL where information about the institution’s sustainability planning 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.