Overall Rating Gold
Overall Score 72.94
Liaison Trey McDonald
Submission Date Oct. 13, 2017
Executive Letter Download

STARS v2.1

University of San Diego
PA-2: Sustainability Planning

Status Score Responsible Party
Complete 2.75 / 4.00 Michael Catanzaro
Director
Office of Sustainability
"---" indicates that no data was submitted for this field

Does the institution have a published strategic plan or equivalent guiding document that includes sustainability at a high level? :
Yes

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

The University's vision statement reads: "The University of San Diego sets the standard for an engaged, contemporary Catholic university where innovative Changemakers confront humanity's urgent challenges."

In December 2016, the University of San Diego adopted a strategic plan entitled "Envision 2024." The goal is to create an engaged, contemporary Catholic university that has identified six interconnected pathways that achieve our vision. These pathways are deeply connected to sustainability and are: Anchor Institution, Engaged Scholarship, Practice Changemaking, Access and Inclusion, Care for our Common Home and Liberal Arts Education for the 21st Century.


A copy of the strategic plan:
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The website URL where the strategic plan is publicly available:
Does the institution have a published sustainability plan (apart from what is reported above)? :
No

A copy of the sustainability plan:
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The website URL where the sustainability plan is publicly available:
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Does the institution have a published climate action plan (apart from what is reported above)? :
Yes

A copy of the climate action plan:
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The website URL where the climate action plan is publicly available:
Does the institution have other published plans that address sustainability or include measurable sustainability objectives (e.g. campus master plan, physical campus plan, diversity plan, human resources plan)? :
Yes

A list of other published plans that address sustainability, including public website URLs (if available):

Envisioning 2024 Strategic Plan: www.sandiego.edu/envisioning-2024

San Diego Gas & Electric (SDG&E) Partnership: Available upon request.

Campus Master Plan: www.sandiego.edu/facilities/master-plan.php

Diversity Plan: www.sandiego.edu/inclusion/diversity-plan.php

Procurement Procedures: http://www.sandiego.edu/procurement/documents/ProcurementProcedure022814.pdf

Fair Trade Resolution: http://www.sandiego.edu/mccasa/documents/resoultion.pdf


Taken together, do the plan(s) reported above include measurable sustainability objectives that address Curriculum?:
No

A list or sample of the measurable sustainability objectives that address Curriculum and the published plans in which each objective is included:

Sustainability in curriculum and academics is addressed by both the Envisioning 2024 Strategic Plan and the Climate Action Plan cross-cutting initiatives. We measure the number of courses that are sustainability focused and sustainability related. The percentage of curriculum that has been devoted towards sustainability is tracked regularly to help sustainability related initiatives and research among faculty and students.


Taken together, do the plan(s) reported above include measurable sustainability objectives that address Research?:
No

A list or sample of the measurable sustainability objectives that address Research and the published plans in which each objective is included:

Research plans and the importance of sustainability research are noted in both the Strategic Plan and the Climate Action Plan. Full-time, tenure track professors are eligible to apply for Faculty Research Grants of up to $6,900 as well as a summer stipend and units of reassigned time. Proposals are considered under the following criteria: academic significance, record of research achievement, organization of the overall project, and clarity of the proposal. Decisions are made by an interdisciplinary committee comprised of faculty across campus. SEED Grants are also available for faculty research and are selected by a committee of a student, faculty, and staff associated with the Office of Sustainability.

Other grants available for faculty related to School of Leadership and Education Science with sustainability related research can be found below:
http://www.sandiego.edu/soles/gateways/faculty-and-staff/resources-for-researchers/

These range from a number of sources related to Natural Science to National Endowments.

http://sites.sandiego.edu/sustainability/faculty-research/


Taken together, do the plan(s) reported above include measurable sustainability objectives that address Campus Engagement?:
No

A list or sample of the measurable sustainability objectives that address Campus Engagement and the published plans in which each objective is included:

USD has developed the general theme of "Elevating Faculty and Staff Engagement" as part of the new vision for 2024.


Taken together, do the plan(s) reported above include measurable sustainability objectives that address Public Engagement?:
No

A list or sample of the measurable sustainability objectives that address Public Engagement and the published plans in which each objective is included:

USD has developed the general theme of "Amplifying Local and Global Engagement and Reputation" as part of the new vision for 2024.


Taken together, do the plan(s) reported above include measurable sustainability objectives that address Air & Climate?:
Yes

A list or sample of the measurable sustainability objectives that address Air & Climate and the published plans in which each objective is included:

The Climate Action Plan sets targets for emissions reductions for the university. The targets are created from a 2010 baseline with absolute reductions of 15% by 2020 and 50% by 2035.


Taken together, do the plan(s) reported above include measurable sustainability objectives that address Buildings?:
Yes

A list or sample of the measurable sustainability objectives that address Buildings and the published plans in which each objective is included:

The University of San Diego's Partnership Agreement with San Diego Gas & Electric (SDG&E) provides approaches to identify and implement energy and demand savings projects on campus. In regards to Building sustainability objectives, the partnership agreement indicates that USD will benchmark an average of two buildings per year in the Energy Star Building Ratings Program. The updated Master Plan codifies the commitment to construct all new buildings to LEED Silver (or equivalent) standards, a target that has been met or exceeded on all new construction since 2010.


Taken together, do the plan(s) reported above include measurable sustainability objectives that address Energy?:
Yes

A list or sample of the measurable sustainability objectives that address Energy and the published plans in which each objective is included:

Energy reduction targets are set forth in the Climate Action Plan. The targets are created from a 2010 baseline emissions per student with targeted reductions from our projected growth of 25% by 2020 and 35% by 2035.


Taken together, do the plan(s) reported above include measurable sustainability objectives that address Food & Dining?:
Yes

A list or sample of the measurable sustainability objectives that address Food & Dining and the published plans in which each objective is included:

The "Resolution of the University of San Diego’s Fair Trade University Steering Committee" outlines guidelines for fair trade purchasing. By declaring Fair Trade guidelines and expectations, USD commits to sustainable sourcing and social justice.

1. Dining facilities: The university, working with its auxiliary services, will continue to make Fair Trade Certified coffee, tea, and chocolate available, as well as increase the diversity of Fair Trade Certified products in its dining facilities and stores.

2. Catered events: The university, working with its auxiliary services, will
work to make Fair Trade Certified coffee, tea and other items available at catered meetings hosted by the university.

3. Offices: The university will encourage the use of Fair Trade Certified coffee, tea and other items for use in university offices whenever possible.

4. Stores: The university commits to include and increase the sale of Fair Trade products such as handicrafts, jewelry and clothing at the USD Torero Store.

5. Education: The university commits to integrate Fair Trade information and education into the programs and culture of the school, in order to ensure that the principles of Fair Trade continue to be part of the policy and social fabric of our community.

6. Acknowledgment: The university will identify and acknowledge Fair Trade products at university functions and stores where appropriate (e.g. with appropriate signage).

7. Advocacy: The university commits to actively support student groups, organizations and university offices which seek to promote the Fair Trade movement on campus and in the larger community.

8. Implementation: The university, in consultation with its auxiliary services, the USD Torero Store, and the USD Fair Trade Committee, will oversee the implementation of the above commitments.


Taken together, do the plan(s) reported above include measurable sustainability objectives that address Grounds?:
Yes

A list or sample of the measurable sustainability objectives that address Grounds and the published plans in which each objective is included:

Grounds sustainability through water reduction strategies is included and will be implemented through the Climate Action Plan. The plan notes optimization through reducing water-intensive plants with drought tolerant and native landscaping. Reduction of "ornamental turf" (lawns that are for decorative purposes only) have been identified and are being removed as a strategy to reduce water consumption. Since 2015 more than 30,515 sq. ft. of turf have been removed saving more than a half million gallons of water.


Taken together, do the plan(s) reported above include measurable sustainability objectives that address Purchasing?:
Yes

A list or sample of the measurable sustainability objectives that address Purchasing and the published plans in which each objective is included:

The Procurement Procedures Plan includes Environmentally Preferable Purchasing (EPP) Procedural Guidelines. This indicates that the "University of San Diego gives preference to environmentally friendly products whose quality, function, and cost are equal or superior to more traditional products." For the purposes of setting goals and evaluating the performance of the University’s green purchasing program, suppliers will be requested to report the environmental attributes in their products.

This procedure will:
- Conserve natural resources
- Minimize pollution
- Reduce the use of water and energy
- Eliminate or reduce environmental health hazards to workers and our community
- Support strong recycling markets
- Reduce materials that are land filled
- Increase the use and availability of environmentally preferable products
- Increase the use and procurement of Green Seal preferable products
- Reward suppliers who reduce environmental impacts in their production and distribution systems or services
- Reduce the purchasing of cleaning or disinfecting products containing carcinogens, mutagens or teratogens
- Reduce the purchasing of paper products and janitorial products that are bleached or contain bleach or chlorine
- Procure only energy star equipment and appliances

(http://www.sandiego.edu/procurement/documents/ProcurementProcedure022814.pdf)


Taken together, do the plan(s) reported above include measurable sustainability objectives that address Transportation?:
Yes

A list or sample of the measurable sustainability objectives that address Transportation and the published plans in which each objective is included:

Commuting reduction targets are set forth in the Climate Action Plan. The targets are created from a 2010 baseline emissions per student with targeted reductions from our projected growth of 2% by 2020 and 12% by 2035.

Additionally, fleet reduction targets are set forth in the Climate Action Plan. The targets are created from a 2010 baseline emissions per student with targeted reductions of projected fossil fuel consumption of USD fleet 5% by 2020 and 15% by 2035 through optimized used and reduced projected fossil fuel consumption of USD fleet 5% by 2020 and 20% by 2035 by increasing clean-fuel vehicle use.


Taken together, do the plan(s) reported above include measurable sustainability objectives that address Waste?:
Yes

A list or sample of the measurable sustainability objectives that address Waste and the published plans in which each objective is included:

Waste reduction targets are set forth in the Climate Action Plan. The targets are created from a 2010 baseline emissions per student with targeted reductions from our projected growth of 60% by 2020 and 75% by 2035.


Taken together, do the plan(s) reported above include measurable sustainability objectives that address Water?:
Yes

A list or sample of the measurable sustainability objectives that address Water and the published plans in which each objective is included:

Water reduction targets are set forth in the Climate Action Plan. The targets are created from a 2010 baseline emissions per student with targeted reductions from our projected growth of 20% by 2020 and 30% by 2035.


Taken together, do the plan(s) reported above include measurable sustainability objectives that address Diversity & Affordability?:
Yes

A list or sample of the measurable sustainability objectives that address Diversity & Affordability and the published plans in which each objective is included:

The USD 2020 Strategic Plan for Diversity and Inclusive Excellence sets guidelines for expanding access and demonstrating inclusive excellence to benefit the learning and success of all students and to advance educational equity and become a first-choice university for underrepresented students.

The 2020 Strategic Plan for Diversity and Inclusive Excellence identifies six terrains that establish vision and goals for inclusion, equity and pluralism for the university. The six terrains establish a sustaining infrastructure that reflects our value that the responsibility of inclusive excellence lies with each member of our community.

1. Access and Recruitment of Students: Enhance access for potential students and current students from all socio-economic classes to undergraduate, graduate and professional programs, especially those whose perspectives have been historically underrepresented and underserved in higher education. Actively recruit students from groups underrepresented at USD, aiming to broaden our pool of applicants so that the differences interwoven into the human experience are justly represented in our recruitment processes.

2. Student Success, Retention and Integration: Identify and track areas where individual students and identity cohorts of students require support, and develop and assess strategies for groups of students whose retention, persistence and graduation rates are lower than those of the general student population and/or experience a lack of integration into our community. Collaborate and work strategically toward the elimination of barriers to student success, whether they are economic, cultural or political.

3. Faculty, Staff and Administrator Access, Recruitment and Development: Develop strategies to increase the diversity of the faculty, particularly in areas where there is underrepresentation according to gender, race and ethnicity, in order to advance academic excellence and student learning. Develop strategies to increase the diversity of staff and administrators, eliminating access, recruitment and development barriers that deter professional advancement and personal fulfillment. Provide equal opportunities for all employees to balance work and life commitments within a mission-driven culture of care, and to build community by exploring commonalities and differences in a work context of mutuality.

4. Campus Culture: Foster a campus culture in which all members of the community, especially those from underrepresented groups: (1) feel safe, respected and valued; (2) are invited to participate fully, sharing their unique gifts, talents and backgrounds; (3) increasingly recognize the value of perspectives that differ from their own; and (4) agree that diversity and inclusion are key priorities of the university. Develop and assess strategies where all members of the community experience inclusivity, felt in spatial features, institutional communication and design languages, and participatory cultural practices. Adopt a regular routine to measure campus culture and climate at fixed intervals.

5. Curricular and Co-Curricular Learning: Build on and expand curricula that integrate diversity, inclusion and social justice into the student experience, encouraging a diversity of perspectives, research topics and pedagogical styles while advancing a commitment to explore power and privilege through disciplinary lenses using universal design. Build on and expand co-curricular learning and student development opportunities that educate the whole person in an inclusive context, and are characterized by equity, justice, compassion and love. Create opportunities for interdisciplinary research and practice to expand our understanding and appreciation of difference in academic and co-curricular domains.

6. Community Relationships and Engagement: Further develop existing relationships with university constituents, including prospective students, families, alumni, donors and other friends of the university, to communicate more clearly the interrelated truths that our commitment to diversity flows from our Catholic identity, and our practices of inclusive excellence lie at the center of our institutional excellence. Expand interdependent relationships with the communities of Linda Vista, San Diego and beyond, attending thoughtfully to how the diversity of the human experience in those contexts can enhance academic excellence on campus, and can grow the opportunities for institutional development and impact.


Taken together, do the plan(s) reported above include measurable sustainability objectives that address Investment & Finance?:
No

A list or sample of the measurable sustainability objectives that address Investment & Finance and the published plans in which each objective is included:
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Taken together, do the plan(s) reported above include measurable sustainability objectives that address Wellbeing & Work?:
Yes

A list or sample of the measurable sustainability objectives that address Wellbeing & Work and the published plans in which each objective is included:

Employee well-being is a priority for University of San Diego Human Resources. The mission statement for the "Being Well" Plan is: to create a supportive environment for our USD community that encourages a healthy lifestyle encompassing the emotional, environmental, financial, intellectual, occupational, physical, social and spiritual components of being well.

Measurable improvements to employee well-bring are monitored through the USD Fitbit Program. The Fitbit tracks Challenges, Adventures, Sleep Goals, Friend & Family In-App, Messaging, Weight Management/Food Tracking Tools, Activity tracking. Through this, USD employees are encouraged to improve well-being.

The full plan can be viewed at: http://www.sandiego.edu/hr/employee/being-well/


Taken together, do the plan(s) reported above include measurable sustainability objectives that address other areas (e.g. arts and culture or technology)?:
No

A list or sample of the measurable sustainability objectives that address other areas and the published plans in which each objective is included:
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Does the institution have a formal statement in support of sustainability endorsed by its governing body (e.g. a mission statement that specifically includes sustainability and is endorsed by the Board of Trustees)? :
Yes

The formal statement in support of sustainability:

As a Catholic institution, Pope Francis' encyclical entitled Laudato si’, or “On Care of Our Common Home,” is essential to the structure and importance of sustainability at USD. Pope Francis emphasizes the need to protect nature with a “courageous and responsible effort to redirect our steps and to avert the most serious effects of environmental deterioration caused by human activity.” Regarding this, he is “confident that America’s outstanding academic and research institutions can make a vital contribution in the years ahead.”

USD's Envisioning 2024 Strategic Plan, approved by the President and the Board of Trustees, includes Care for a Common home as one of the six pathways. The formal statement as listed on the Envisioning 2024 website states:

"The message of Laudato si' tells us we must not only speak the words, but also take immediate action in concrete ways at all levels of the university to care for our common home. From messaging on campus for our visitors and our community, to policies affecting how we do business, to facilitating engagement from our staff, students, faculty and administrators, creating and supporting curricular efforts at all levels, we identify areas of opportunity to create a truly shared and lived vision for Care for Our Common Home."


The institution’s definition of sustainability (e.g. as included in a published statement or plan):

n/a


Is the institution an endorser or signatory of the following? :
Yes or No
The Earth Charter No
The Higher Education Sustainability Initiative (HESI) No
ISCN-GULF Sustainable Campus Charter No
Second Nature’s Carbon Commitment (formerly known as the ACUPCC), Resilience Commitment, and/or integrated Climate Commitment No
The Talloires Declaration (TD) No
UN Global Compact No
Other multi-dimensional sustainability commitments (please specify below) Yes

A brief description of the institution’s formal sustainability commitments, including the specific initiatives selected above:

USD signed the Clean Power Plan authored by the Catholic Climate Covenant.


The website URL where information about the programs or initiatives is available:
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Additional documentation to support the submission:
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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.