Overall Rating Silver - expired
Overall Score 55.91
Liaison Liesel Schwarz
Submission Date Nov. 25, 2014
Executive Letter Download

STARS v2.0

Villanova University
EN-3: Student Life

Status Score Responsible Party
Complete 1.50 / 2.00 Liesel Schwarz
Sustainability Manager
Facilities
"---" indicates that no data was submitted for this field

Does the institution have one or more co-curricular sustainability programs and initiatives that fall into the following categories?:
Yes or No
Active student groups focused on sustainability Yes
Gardens, farms, community supported agriculture (CSA) or fishery programs, or urban agriculture projects where students are able to gain experience in organic agriculture and sustainable food systems Yes
Student-run enterprises that include sustainability as part of their mission statements or stated purposes No
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
Conferences, speaker series, symposia or similar events related to sustainability that have students as the intended audience Yes
Cultural arts events, installations or performances related to sustainability that have students as the intended audience No
Wilderness or outdoors programs that follow Leave No Trace principles Yes
Sustainability-related themes chosen for themed semesters, years, or first-year experiences No
Programs through which students can learn sustainable life skills Yes
Sustainability-focused student employment opportunities offered by the institution Yes
Graduation pledges through which students pledge to consider social and environmental responsibility in future job and other decisions No
Other co-curricular sustainability programs and initiatives No

The name and a brief description of each student group focused on sustainability:

Student Subcommittee, President’s Environmental Sustainability Committee- This group is charged with overseeing student efforts associated with sustainability and the goals of the Presidents’ Climate Commitment. (http://www.villanova.edu/sustainability/organizations.htm)
 
Villanova Environmental Group- A group of student activists who participate in projects on campus, locally, and globally. VEG presents an open forum for anyone who has questions, concerns, and ideas regarding the constant changes in the environment (http://www.students.villanova.edu/veg/)
 
Villanova Ecological Society- Founded in 1994 by a group of biology undergraduates; focuses on ecology and environmental science. Activities include: (1) meetings to share information about ecological issues and environmental action; (2) field trips to regional sites for natural history observation, environmental education, service, and recreation; and (3) sponsorship of invited speakers and other events with ecological and environmental themes. (http://www.students.villanova.edu/esv/activities.htm)
 
Engineers for a Sustainable World- Formed in 2008; conducts Home Energy Audits as an outreach service project for the local Villanova community, partners with a Bio-diesel production facility that processes used cooking oil for use as fuel on Villanova's campus (http://www.villanova.edu/sustainability/organizations.htm)
 
Business Without Borders- Formed in 2008 within the Villanova School of Business; affiliated with Net Impact Undergrad, a higher-education program that seeks to encourage undergraduates around themes of corporate social responsibility, social entrepreneurship, green business, and other topics related to the ways in which business can be used to make a positive impact on the world. The mission of the Villanova group is to equip, educate, and inspire Villanova School of Business students to use their business skills for lasting social and environmental good. To fulfill this mission, Business without Borders Net Impact Undergrad Chapter 1) empowers undergraduate students to use their skills to positively impact their surroundings, 2) helps them put their beliefs into action through sustainability efforts, and 3) enlarges their network with other like-minded individuals who have demonstrated their commitment to social corporate responsibility. (http://www.villanova.edu/business/undergrad/societies.htm)
 
Engineers Without Borders- Gives students an opportunity to provide technical engineering assistance on various development projects. This organization is entirely managed by student volunteers and partners with local and international organizations to assist with the delivery of sustainable infrastructure projects and livelihood development programs. (http://www.students.villanova.edu/egrorgs/EWB/)
 
Environmental and Energy Law Society, Villanova Law School - Dedicated to exploring the effects and prospects of law relating to the environment and energy. The group is primarily concerned with US energy policies and the environmental consequences they produce.
 
In addition, the Student Government Association (SGA) at Villanova established a sustainability subcommittee designed to promote sustainable practices on campus in Fall 2010.


The website URL where information about student groups is available:
A brief description of gardens, farms, community supported agriculture (CSA) or fishery programs, and urban agriculture projects where students are able to gain experience in organic agriculture and sustainable food systems:

Villanova students are interested in starting an organic garden, but due to the land-locked nature of the campus they are not able to farm on campus. As a result the Villanova Community Garden student group takes trips to different gardens around Philadelphia to learn about gardening and help with the farming. There are about 50 students in the group.


The website URL where information about the organic agriculture and/or sustainable food systems projects and initiatives is available:
A brief description of student-run enterprises that include sustainability as part of their mission statements or stated purposes:

There are no student-run enterprises on campus, but there is a student managed funds group on campus that invests money in socially responsible mutual funds with positive screens. Over the past 3 years, total money held in these funds were as follows: FY10 = $424,457, FY11 = $470,632, and FY12 = $434,643.


The website URL where information about the student-run enterprise(s) is available:
A brief description of the sustainable investment or finance initiatives:

Villanova has a sustainable investment fund, but it is not yet organized in a way for students to take part in the project funding process. The fund is housed in facilities and is used on projects that can prove their energy efficiency.


The website URL where information about the sustainable investment or finance initiatives is available:
A brief description of conferences, speaker series, symposia or similar events related to sustainability that have students as the intended audience:

Every year we hold an Earth Day celebration that many times includes an in-house presentation and guest speaker, as well as a poster session where students are able to showcase their sustainability projects done throughout the year.The celebration also includes a farmers market. Speakers have included: a panel discussion on hydraulic fracturing, and keynote address from Katherine Gajewski, Director of Sustainability, City of Philadelphia. More recent have included a panel on trends in sustainable agriculture, and a keynote address by a local farmer who used to work on Wall Street. In addition to the farmers market and poster session, students participated in an Earth Day service trip to a local farm to help with prepping the farm for planting.

In addition to Earth Day, we participated in Campus Sustainability Day for the first time last year, with three separate presentations: one on campus sustainability efforts, another on sustainable academic offerings, and a panel of alumni on sustainable careers.

Lastly, many of our professors offer courses throughout the year that focus on different sustainability issues and invite guest presenters to come to campus as part of the class. When possible we open those presentations up to the entire Villanova community. In the Fall 2013 we had a series of speakers on sustainable business practices. For the 2014 Spring semester we had a series of guest lectures on sustainable practices happening locally.


The website URL where information about the event(s) is available:
A brief description of cultural arts events, installations or performances related to sustainability that have students as the intended audience:
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The website URL where information about the cultural arts event(s) is available:
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A brief description of wilderness or outdoors programs for students that follow Leave No Trace principles:

Villanova's Outdoors Club hosts regular hiking, white water rafting, and skiing outings. The group is conscious of protecting the environment they are in and follow Leave No Trace principles.


The website URL where information about the wilderness or outdoors program(s) is available:
A brief description of sustainability-related themes chosen for themed semesters, years, or first-year experiences:

In the 2008-2009 calendar year, Villanova celebrated the "Year of Sustainability". Through curricular development, along with research and service initiatives, the year highlighted our crucial and shared responsibility to care for the environment. The year was led by an interdisciplinary executive committee of faculty members in collaboration with the President’s Environmental Sustainability Committee, and culminated in the International SustainAbility Conference featuring Robert F. Kennedy, Jr.


The website URL where information about the theme is available:
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A brief description of program(s) through which students can learn sustainable life skills:

Incoming freshman can register to live in the Environmental Leadership Learning Community. Though this learning community, students:
-Take a specially-designed section of the humanities seminar Augustine and Culture (ACS) with other students in their Experience community, focusing holistically on the question of "Who Am I?" in relation to the natural environment and human culture
-Participate in a one-credit workshop style class that meets weekly in the residence hall, called Villanova Experience (VEXP), which will explore:
-Effective ways to communicate about a variety of issues relevant to the first-year college experience
-Current issues, practices, and innovations that impact the natural world
-Ways in which both local and larger communities can care for the natural world
-Opportunities to work in small groups
- Students in the community live together in Katharine Hall on the south campus
-Enjoy an enriched academic and co-curricular experience because of student and faculty interactions in and out of the classroom, creating a stronger community for first-year students. Activities outside of the classroom include "movie and pizza" nights, on-campus lectures and special events, and off-campus field trips to locations such as organic urban farms, eco-housing developments, and manufacturers of eco-friendly products.


The website URL where information about the sustainable life skills program(s) is available:
A brief description of sustainability-focused student employment opportunities:

Six students in the Masters of Sustainable Engineering program are working with the university sustainability manager to develop a sustainability plan for the University as part of paid work hours. The project is broken into three areas, benchmark, goal setting, and plan development. We hope to have the plan completed by Winter 2014.


The website URL where information about the student employment opportuntities is available:
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A brief description of graduation pledges through which students pledge to consider social and environmental responsibility in future job and other decisions:

This is something we are looking to incorporate into the 2015 commencement.


The website URL where information about the graduation pledge program is available:
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A brief description of other co-curricular sustainability programs and initiatives:
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The website URL where information about other co-curricular sustainability programs and initiatives is available:
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