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Report Card 2010

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Skidmore College
College Sustainability Report Card 2010

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Skidmore College

School details:

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Endowment: $240 million as of June 30, 2009

Location: Saratoga Springs, New York

Enrollment: 2,583

Type: Private


Campus Survey: Yes (see response)

Dining Survey: Yes (see response)

Endowment Survey: Yes (see response)

Student Survey: No


Data compiled from independent research. For information on data collection and evaluation, please see the Methods section.

Overall grade  
Skidmore addresses its dedication to sustainability in its strategic plan, operating plans, and master plan. The college employs a campus sustainability coordinator and recently created a sustainability office. The Campus Environmental Committee, comprised of faculty and students, is also dedicated to furthering sustainability on campus. All paper used on campus contains at least 30 percent recycled content, and all computers purchased are Energy Star-rated.
A greenhouse gas emissions inventory is near completion. Skidmore has implemented geothermal heating and cooling for several buildings, meeting 17 percent of the campus’s heating and cooling needs. The college has purchased a small cogeneration facility and recently retrocommissioned an HVAC system for efficiency. Temperature setbacks have been implemented to conserve energy.
Skidmore spends $280,000 annually on local foods, including produce, bread, dairy, and meats. Most dairy purchased is hormone- and antibiotic-free, and half of the college’s seafood is purchased according to sustainability guidelines. To reduce waste, the college has implemented a trayless dining program, and a recycling program is available for traditional and electronic materials.
The college's green building policy sets LEED standards as the benchmark for building design and requires energy efficiency in all new buildings to be 30 percent greater than that of building code specifications. The Zankel Music Center meets LEED Silver standards. Occupancy sensors for lighting have been installed in most offices and classrooms on campus.
During first-year orientation, new students learn about campus sustainability through a scavenger hunt, and ten Eco-Reps promote sustainability among residential students. In 2009, the Environmental Action Club organized Earth Day celebrations, created a community bicycle project, and a student-run vegetable garden. All residence halls compete to reduce their electricity consumption during Skidmore Unplugged.
Skidmore is pedestrian- and bicycle-friendly, with a maximum ten minute walk to most classes. Anyone with a valid Skidmore ID can use public regional transportation for free, and bicycles are available for loan from the campus safety department. The college also owns two hybrid cars.
The college makes a list of all holdings available to all members of the school community, including faculty, staff, students, and alumni. A list of votes cast on proxy resolutions on a company-specific level, including the number of shares, is also available at the investment office to members of the school community.
Skidmore College aims to optimize investment return and is currently invested in renewable energy funds, community development loan funds, and on-campus energy and water efficiency projects.
A member of the college administration determines proxy votes. The college invites members of the community to share opinions about shareholder questions and will disclose any positions they take on them.
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