Overall Rating Silver - expired
Overall Score 50.85
Liaison Elissa Brown
Submission Date Feb. 8, 2017
Executive Letter Download

STARS v2.1

Whitman College
EN-6: Assessing Sustainability Culture

Status Score Responsible Party
1.00 / 1.00 Brandon Bishop
Campus Sustainability Coordinator
Physical Plant
"---" indicates that no data was submitted for this field

Does the institution conduct an assessment of sustainability culture (i.e. the assessment focuses on sustainability values, behaviors and beliefs, and may also address awareness of campus sustainability initiatives)?:
Yes

Which of the following best describes the cultural assessment? The assessment is administered to::
The entire campus community (students, staff and faculty), directly or by representative sample

Which of the following best describes the structure of the cultural assessment? The assessment is administered::
Longitudinally to measure change over time

A brief description of how and when the cultural assessment(s) were developed and/or adopted:

The Office of Sustainability works with the student government to conduct a cultural assessment of all students, staff, and faculty. In addition to this general review we conduct overviews into subcategories through our Greening of the Office program operates as both an assessment of sustainability and an understanding of the cultural attributes of campus sustainability. The interview collects information related to sustainable behavior and perceptions of sustainability. These interviews are conducted every couple years to establish if there has been a change in user behavior.

Additionally we conduct an Annual Transportation Survey

Identify opportunities to improve building occupant comfort and provide a better work environment for employees,

Identify opportunities to improve building occupant comfort and provide a better work environment for employees,

Assist in reducing measurable energy use and GHG emissions f rom user conservation behavior,

Inventory office energy use to establish benchmarks for reduction goals and identify opportunities for energy efficiency initiatives and cost savings,

Educate and engage the campus community about how they can help us redu ce our carbon footprint and become more sustainable in their work environment.

To optimize program goals, the GOTO program will be delivered on a building-by-building basis so that benchmarks can be established to measure the results of the program; within each building every department will be surveyed and reported separately. Office of Sustainability student employees will:

Present the GOTO program to the department,

Register faculty and staff members for a one-on-one GOTO survey

Perform survey for each faculty and staff member,

Analyze survey results and send to each faculty and staff member,

Calculate departmental results, send to the director or department chair, and post the information to the GOTO website.

Individual GOTO survey results will be shared only with the individual employee; departmental summary results will be posted to the Departmental Scores web page, and suggestions for departmental improvement shared only with the supervisors of that department. Each individual and department who completes the GOTO survey will receive a sign with the GOTO logo to be displayed in their office, indicating their successful participation in the program.


A copy or sample of the questions related to sustainability culture:
A sample of the questions related to sustainability culture or the website URL where the assessment tool is available:

Campus Sustainability Survey

General Information
1. First name?

2. Last name?

3. What is your class year?
• First-Year
• Sophomore
• Junior
• Senior
4. What is the name of your residence hall and section? Indicate off-campus if applicable.

5. What is your Whitman email address?

Waste Minimization and Recycling
6. Do you recycle all plastic bottles, paper, and cardboard?
There are recycling bins for paper, cardboard, and plastic bottles on the ground floor of Reid Campus Center. Most residence halls also have recycling containers. Unfortunately, the city of Walla Walla does not have glass recycling available-- glass must be thrown out in the trash.
• I put all waste in the trash
• I recycle when there is a recycling bin easily accessible
• I save all my recyclables and make sure they get to the right place
7. Do you regularly use reusable shopping bags instead of plastic or paper bags?
Americans use and throw away 100 billion plastic bags every year (source). Plastic bags are non-biodegradable products of the petroleum industry and contaminate water, land, and air in their production and disposal. If you find yourself with plastic bags, put them to a second use as trash bin liners, reuse them as grocery bags, or drop them off at a plastic bag recycling bin at grocery stores. If you bundle them up well, they are accepted at the Campus Recycling Center.
• No
• When I remember
• Yes
8. Do you use a reusable coffee mug or thermos instead of a disposable cup when purchasing to-go drinks?
Americans throw away an estimated 25 billion styrofoam cups every year (source). The coffee stations in Reid Campus Center or Penrose Library will happily fill your reusable travel mug instead of a plastic cup.

• No
• When I remember
• Yes
• Not applicable to me
9. Do you always print double-sided?
Double-sided printing is a great way to reduce paper use. Click here for more information on how to set up double-sided printing on your printer. Ask your professors for their policy on having laptops in class.
• No
• When I remember
• Yes
10.
Do you intentionally take only as much food as you know you can eat?
About 40% of all the food produced in the U.S. is never eaten (source). Wasting food is a problem worldwide, but has additional disadvantages at Whitman because we do not have a large-scale composting system.
• No
• Sometimes
• Yes
11.
Do you recycle items that require special recycling methods (e.g. batteries, incandescent light bulbs, and electronic devices) in the proper recycling collection locations?
Should any of your electronics reach the end of their lives, bring them to the Campus Recycling Center (corner of Merriam St. and Boyer Ave., behind the Outhouse), the Physical Plant, or Hall of Science so they can be properly disposed of. Electronics are full of toxic chemicals and best disassembled, recycled, and handled safely. If you have compact fluorescent light bulbs (CFLs), contact Environmental Health and Safety, located in North Hall. For more information about recycling at Whitman, check out Whitman's recycling instructions here and recycling efforts here.
• No
• Yes
Energy and Water
12. Do you turn off the faucet when brushing your teeth and/or washing your face?
By turning off the tap while brushing your teeth, washing your face, or shaving, a person can save more than 200 gallons of water each month (source).
• No
• Yes
13. Do you always turn off the faucet completely and report leaks to residence hall staff?
A leaky faucet that drips at the rate of one drip per second can waste more than 3,000 gallons per year (source). If you notice a leaky appliance in your residence hall, leave a note with the janitorial staff so they know to fix it.
• I don’t go out of my way to be extra sure the faucet is 100% off
• I report leaks to the janitorial staff when I see them
14. Do you take short showers to conserve both water and heat?
By making your showers 5 minutes shorter every day, you can reduce your yearly water consumption by over 2700 gallons (source).
• No
• Yes
15. Do you own a reusable water bottle and use it instead of buying bottled water?
Whitman’s source of drinking water is locally sourced from Mill Creek and is very clean. Moreover, the process of manufacturing 1 bottle of water requires 2 times as much water as what actually goes into the bottle (source). Good thing Whitman's Campus Climate Coalition (CCC) banned the sale of bottled water on campus in 2011!
• No
• When I can
• Yes
16. Do you turn off the lights whenever you leave your room or see a public space empty?
This is one of the simplest things you can do to save energy.
• Sometimes I leave the lights on in my room when I'm not in it
• I only turn the lights off when I leave my room
• I turn lights off whenever I see them left on in an empty space, and always when I leave my room
17. Before leaving for breaks, do you unplug all your appliances and electronics, close the windows tightly, and turn off the lights?
Many students forget to take these simple steps before leaving campus, resulting in an unnecessary waste of energy for days or weeks at a time.
• Not Always
• Yes
18. If you live off campus, do you use CFLs (compact fluorescent lights) or LEDs instead of incandescent (regular) lights?
Compact fluorescent lights (CFLs) use up to 70-90% less energy than incandescent bulbs. Each one also last 10 to 25 times longer and saves $30 to $80 in electricity costs over a lifetime (source).
• No
• I live on campus and do not choose my light bulbs
• Yes
Transportation
19. Do you carpool whenever possible?
Need a ride to Portland, Seattle or Pasco? Check out the Grapeline, Whitman’s shuttle service or the Whitman Carpool Facebook group.
• No
• Yes
20. Do you use a bicycle or walk to get around as an alternative to driving?
Don’t have a bicycle? Check out Whitman's new refurbished bike share program in front of the library. With your student ID, bikes can be checked out for free 24 hours a day for a 24-hour period, along with lights and a helmet. Whitman also has a bike shop in the back of North Hall where bike mechanics can help you with repairs and parts.
• No
• Sometimes
• Yes
Purchasing
The Sustainability Committee recognizes that purchasing power is a privilege, and one that not all Whitman students have. Environmental commitments and lifestyle changes are personal and cultural choices. Should you ever feel uncomfortable with a question, select the option "Not applicable to me" to remove the question from your final score.
21. When possible, do you buy locally by shopping at farmers’ markets or choosing locally-grown foods at the grocery store?
Walla Walla has two farmers’ markets. The Walla Walla County Fairgrounds market is Saturdays from 9AM to 1PM through October and Thursdays 4PM to 7PM until September. The Downtown Farmers’ Market on Saturdays from 9AM to 1PM at the Transit Center and Thursdays 4 to 7PM in Heritage Square Park. Eat what’s in season! Real Foods Walla Walla has a Community-Supported Agriculture (CSA) program.

• No
• I haven't, but I plan to
• Yes
• Not applicable to me
22. When possible, do you buy foods that have been certified as organic?
Purchasing organic foods helps mitigate the impacts of conventional farming practices, such as the depletion of biodiversity, the reduction in soil quality, and the use of toxic fertilizers and pesticides. Visit Andy’s Market to buy bulk foods or visit one of Walla Walla’s farmer’s markets.
• No
• Yes
• Buying organic is cost-prohibitive for me.
23.
Do you choose to be a vegetarian, vegan, or make an effort to reduce the amount of meat and dairy you eat?
Adopting a vegan, vegetarian, or reduced animal product diet can have a major impact on the environment. If every American ate just one meatless meal per week, the carbon dioxide savings would be equivalent to taking 8 million cars off the road annually (source).
• I do not alter my diet at all
• I make an effort to reduce the amount of meat and dairy I eat, but am not vegetarian or vegan
• I am vegetarian
• I am vegan
• Not applicable to me
24. Do you purchase environmentally-friendly cleaning products and laundry detergents to reduce the use of toxic materials?
Environmentally friendly cleaning products are less toxic, promote better indoor air quality, and use less energy in their production. Look for brands including Seventh Generation and EO Products, found in most stores alongside conventional cleaning product brands.
• No
• Yes
• Not applicable to me.
25. Do you shop and donate second-hand (Goodwill, eBay Green, Craigslist, etc.) when possible?
Check out the Walla Walla Goodwill (map here).
• No
• Yes
Involvement at Whitman
26. Have you contacted the ASWC Sustainability Committee about a question, concern, or idea you have?
We are a small committee of students charged with the task of generating cutting-edge sustainability initiatives for the Whitman community. Got an idea? Want to join? Email us at aswc_sustainability@whitman.edu.
• Yes
• No
• No, but I plan to
27. Do you know at least one member of the ASWC Sustainability Committee and how to get in contact with them?

Spoiler Alert: Members are below!
Danielle Hupper: hupperda@whitman.edu
Lydia Petroske: petroslr@whitman.edu
Genean Wrisley: wrisleg@whitman.edu
Gautam Produturi: produtgr@whitman.edu
Mikaela Slade: slademe@whitman.edu
Thomas Meinzen: meinzetc@whitman.edu
Margo Heffron: heffromj@whitman.edu
Danielle Schlenker: schlendm@whitman.edu
Ryan Garrett: garretr@whitman.edu
• Yes
• Don't know them yet, but will contact them if I have questions or suggestions about Whitman sustainability
• No, I don't know any ASWC Sustainability Committee members and won't contact them
28. Are you a member of an environmental club or have you volunteered for an environmental activity?
There are nine on-campus organizations that relate to environmentalism, climate action, and sustainability. These include the Campus Climate Coalition, Divest Whitman Campaign, Organic Garden, Glean Team, Student Agriculture at Whitman, Mycology Club, Organic Garden, Rethink Dams, and The Outhouse. Visit the ASWC Sustainability website for more information about these groups, meeting times, and current projects.
• Yes
• No
• No, but I plan to join one this year
29. Have you rented a bike from Whitman’s Bike Share Program?
Check out a bike for 24 hours using your Whitman ID at the library front desk!
• Yes
• No
• Not applicable to me
30. Have you volunteered for the Glean Team, gone to an open garden at the Whitman Organic Garden, or volunteered with SAW (Student Agriculture at Whitman)?
The Glean Team was founded to raise awareness on issues pertaining to food insecurity and to provide opportunities for Whitman students to harvest and donate fresh produce to Walla Walla food banks. With 250 members, and over 90 gleaning events in the past year, it has quickly become one of the most active groups on campus. In combined efforts with community volunteers, nearly 35,000 pounds of fresh produce have been donated to the Blue Mountain Action Council (BMAC) Food Warehouse and distributed to those in need throughout the county.

The Organic Garden club, located on Penrose Rd, is student-run and operates under a "work in exchange for what you take" mentality. Get your hands dirty at an Open Garden (Fridays from, Sundays from 10 -12 pm, and Mondays from 4-6 pm 4-6pm), eat yummy organic food, and chill with the chickens.
SAW helps to incorporate local, fresh organic produce grown blocks away from campus into the dining halls. Joining SAW is another wonderful way to learn more about growing food sustainably.
• Yes
• No
• No, but I plan to this year
31. Have you attended an event hosted by the Outhouse?
The Environmental Interest House—known as The Outhouse—was established in 1981 as a part of the Interest House Community. It provides housing for several environmentally minded sophomore and junior students every year. The students aim to involve themselves in solving environmental issues on campus. One of their biggest activities is spearheading the campus recycling program. The Outhouse also puts on events each year such as the well-known “Outhouse Unplugged” where students can perform live acoustic music or read poetry by candlelight. The building itself has a number of environmentally friendly measures taken to make it more sustainable, including a small solar array on the roof, and a passive solar water heating system.
• Yes
• No
• No, but I plan to this year
32. Have you attended a meeting with environmental advocacy groups like Divest Whitman or Rethink Dams?
The mission of Divest Whitman is to convince our Board of Trustees to remove Whitman’s fiscal investments in the fossil fuel industry and thus hold the College accountable to the values, policies, and beliefs implicit in the mission of Whitman. Check out their Facebook page or message DW here.
Rethink Dams recently formed to establish a community at Whitman and in the larger Walla Walla region set on building support for the removal of the lower Snake River Dams.
• Yes
• No
• No, but I plan to this year
33. Have you applied for and/or received a grant for a sustainability project on campus, participated in an environmental studies internship, or pursued a sustainability project with or without funding?
If you have a sustainability project idea, you can either apply to the Green Fund or the Travel and Student Development Fund here through ASWC, or the Outdoor Environmental Leadership Fund here. Don’t know where to begin? Try going to a Campus Climate Coalition meeting or talking to someone on the ASWC Sustainability Committee (aswc_sustainability@whitman.edu).
• Yes
• No
34. Are you aware that Whitman's electricity usage is carbon neutral as of 2016?
Whitman began purchasing renewable energy in response to student demand to offset emissions in the early 2000s. As of July 2016, the budget will increase by $35,000 a year to buy Renewable Energy Credits (a form of carbon offsets). These credits offset 100% of the College's electricity. Per student spending will thereby increase $23 a year.
• Yes
• No, but I am now
35. Would you like to see Whitman compost the food waste from its dining halls?
So would we! If you'd like to be a part of the initiative to bring large-scale compost to Whitman, or are interested in learning more about this issue, please consider attending a Campus Climate Coalition meeting and/or emailing Thomas at meinzetc@whitman.edu or Tyee at williatg@whitman.edu, and we'll be glad to fill you in on the situation!
• Yes
• No
Last Step!
36. Will you encourage your friends to receive their ASWC Sustainable Living Certification?
In a couple days, you should get a sticker and a letter in the mail with your score! Wear it with pride! Tell your friends about the certification and encourage sustainable behavior. Students like you play a large role in getting fellow students involved.
• Yes
• No
37. If there is another environmentally sustainable lifestyle choice you make that does not appear on this list, tell us in the space provided below. We will review any additional choices and consider granting extra points. If there is nothing additional you would like us to consider, please leave blank.

Whitman College Transportation Survey

Q1 Institution Status
 First-Year Student (1)
 Sophomore (2)
 Junior (3)
 Senior (4)
 Faculty (5)
 Staff (6)

Q3 During this school year, how often do you expect to travel by BUS between Walla Walla and:
One Time (1) Two Times (2) Three Times (3) Four Times (4) Five Times (5) Six Times (6) Seven Times (7) Eight Times (8)
Approx. 150 miles (Yakima, Ellensburg, Spokane) (1)        
Approx. 250 miles (Seattle, Portland, Bend, Missoula, Boise) (2)        
Approx. 350 miles ( Eugene, Ashland, Bellingham, Vancouver) (3)        
Northern CA, Nevada, Utah, Wyoming, Eastern Montana (4)        
Southern CA, Arizona, New Mexico, Colorado, Alaska (5)        
The Great Plains, Texas (6)        
The Midwest (7)        
The East Coast (8)        
The Southeast (9)        
Outside of the Continental United States (10)        

Q4 During this school year, how often do you expect to travel by PLANE between Walla Walla and:
One Time (1) Two Times (2) Three Times (3) Four Times (4) Five Times (5) Six Times (6) Seven Times (7) Eight Times (8)
Approx. 150 miles (Yakima, Ellensburg, Spokane) (1)        
Approx. 250 miles (Seattle, Portland, Bend, Missoula, Boise) (2)        
Approx. 350 miles ( Eugene, Ashland, Bellingham, Vancouver) (3)        
Northern CA, Nevada, Utah, Wyoming, Eastern Montana (4)        
Southern CA, Arizona, New Mexico, Colorado, Alaska (5)        
The Great Plains, Texas (6)        
The Midwest (7)        
The East Coast (8)        
The Southeast (9)        
Outside of the Continental United States (10)        

Q5 During this school year, how often do you expect to travel by CAR between Walla Walla and:
One Time (1) Two Times (2) Three Times (3) Four Times (4) Five Times (5) Six Times (6) Seven Times (7) Eight Times (8)
Approx. 150 miles (Yakima, Ellensburg, Spokane) (1)        
Approx. 250 miles (Seattle, Portland, Bend, Missoula, Boise) (2)        
Approx. 350 miles ( Eugene, Ashland, Bellingham, Vancouver) (3)        
Northern CA, Nevada, Utah, Wyoming, Eastern Montana (4)        
Southern CA, Arizona, New Mexico, Colorado, Alaska (5)        
The Great Plains, Texas (6)        
The Midwest (7)        
The East Coast (8)        
The Southeast (9)        
Outside of the Continental United States (10)        

Q6 Approximately how many miles away from campus do you live? (Please round to the nearest mile).
 On Campus (1)
 A half-mile or less (2)
 1 mile (3)
 2 miles (4)
 3 miles (5)
 4 miles (6)
 5 miles (7)
 6 miles (8)
 7 miles (9)
 8 miles (10)
 9 miles (11)
 More than 9 miles (provide number) (12)

Q7 During an average week, (Monday through Sunday), how many of your weekly trips to campus are made in a single occupancy motor vehicle?
 0 (1)
 1 (2)
 2 (3)
 3 (4)
 4 (5)
 5 (6)
 6 (7)
 7 (8)
 8 (9)
 9 (10)
 10 (11)
 11 (12)
 12 (13)
 13 (14)
 14 (15)
 15 (16)
 16 (17)
 17 (18)
 18 (19)
 19 (20)
 20 (21)

Q25 During an average week, (Monday through Sunday), how many of your weekly trips to campus are by Carpooling (count a round trip as two separate trips)?
 Click to write Choice 1 (1)
 Click to write Choice 2 (2)
 Click to write Choice 3 (3)

Q8 During an average week, (Monday through Sunday), how many of your weekly trips to campus are made by BUS (count a round trip as two separate trips)?
 0 (1)
 1 (2)
 2 (3)
 3 (4)
 4 (5)
 5 (6)
 6 (7)
 7 (8)
 8 (9)
 9 (10)
 10 (11)
 11 (12)
 12 (13)
 13 (14)
 14 (15)
 15 (16)
 16 (17)
 17 (18)
 18 (19)
 19 (20)
 20 (21)

Q9 During an average week, (Monday through Sunday), how many of your weekly trips to campus are made by bike (count a round trip as two separate trips)?
 0 (1)
 1 (2)
 2 (3)
 3 (4)
 4 (5)
 5 (6)
 6 (7)
 7 (8)
 8 (9)
 9 (10)
 10 (11)
 11 (12)
 12 (13)
 13 (14)
 14 (15)
 15 (16)
 16 (17)
 17 (18)
 18 (19)
 19 (20)
 20 (21)

Q10 During an average week, (Monday through Sunday), how many of your weekly trips to campus are made on foot (count a round trip as two separate trips)?
 0 (1)
 1 (2)
 2 (3)
 3 (4)
 4 (5)
 5 (6)
 6 (7)
 7 (8)
 8 (9)
 9 (10)
 10 (11)
 11 (12)
 12 (13)
 13 (14)
 14 (15)
 15 (16)
 16 (17)
 17 (18)
 18 (19)
 19 (20)
 20 (21)

Q23 How often per year do you travel on behalf of Whitman College (i.e. Conferences, Academic travel, Athletics)?
0 (1) 1 (2) 2 (3) 3 (4) 4 (5) 5 (6) 6 (7) 7 (8) 8 (9) 9 (10) 10 (11) 11 (12) 12 (13) 13 (14) 14 (15) 15 (16) 16 (17) 17 (18) 18 (19) 19 (20) 20 (21)
Plane (1)                     
Bus (2)                     
Car (3)                     

Q13 Have you ever utilized the Campus Bike Share?
 Yes (1)
 No (2)
 Unaware of the Bike Share (3)

Q15 What is your overall satisfaction rating with the Campus Bike Share?
 Very Satisfied (1)
 Somewhat Satisfied (2)
 Neither Satisfied Nor Dissatisfied (3)
 Somewhat Dissatisfied (4)
 Very Dissatisfied (5)

Q27 Would you support a year long Bike loan program for students who do not bring vehicles to campus?
 Yes (1)
 Maybe (2)
 No (3)

Q16 What transportation options would you like to see provided on Campus?

Q18 How concerned are you about environmental issues?
 Very Concerned (1)
 Somewhat Concerned (2)
 Concerned (3)
 Not Concerned (4)

Q19 My campus is leader in sustainable practices among other universities.
 Strongly Disagree (1)
 Disagree (2)
 Neither Agree Nor Disagree (3)
 Agree (4)
 Strongly Agree (5)

Q20 What sustainability initiatives would you like to see on campus?


A brief description of how representative samples were reached (if applicable) and how the cultural assessment is administered:

They general sustainability survey and sustainable transportation was administered through our faculty, staff, and student listserves.


A brief summary of results from the cultural assessment, including a description of any measurable changes over time:

The transportation survey is currently being administered each year to record longitudinal trends completed results have not been received. Our general sustainability survey has received about a 5% response rate but we are still conducting the survey.


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.