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Report Card 2010

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Wheaton College (MA)
College Sustainability Report Card 2010

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Wheaton College (MA)

School details:

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Endowment: $140 million as of June 30, 2009

Location: Norton, Massachusetts

Enrollment: 1,569

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  
C +
The Sustainability Committee serves as the umbrella committee for several active sustainability groups. Efforts include policy recommendations and campus education. All copy paper contains a minimum of 20 percent recycled content, and all computers purchased meet EPEAT standards.
A focus group of administrators and students is beginning the school's first greenhouse gas emissions inventory, and a feasibility study on sourcing campus energy from renewable sources will begin this fall. The college has switched its heating source from fuel oil to more energy-efficient natural gas, thereby reducing its carbon emissions. Conservation measures include temperature setbacks and regular steam trap maintenance.
Dining services spends 19 percent of its total annual budget on local and organic foods, including milk from a local dairy. All retail coffee is local, organic, and fair trade-certified. Wheaton sends all compostable kitchen scraps to a local piggery and donates used coffee grinds to an on-campus greenhouse.
The Center for Scientific Inquiry and Innovation is to be completed in 2011 and is aiming for LEED Silver certification. Technologies such as lighting motion sensors and low-flow plumbing fixtures have been installed around campus.
The campus offers a sustainability-themed ECCO House and sustainability information sessions during first-year student orientation. Wheaton is beginning an Eco-Reps program this fall. Savings from the Greener Wheaton energy reduction contest are transferred to student financial aid. Students may become engaged in several student sustainability clubs.
Wheaton offers a ride-share program, premium parking for carpoolers, and a shuttle bus to off-campus destinations. Students also receive an unlimited pass on regional transit. The public safety department includes a hybrid vehicle and bicycles.
A list of all endowment holdings and votes cast on proxy resolutions on a company-specific level, including the number of shares, is made available to trustees, senior administrators, and other select members of the school community on a password-protected website. Information requests about endowment holdings and proxy voting records from the public are reviewed and authorized by senior management.
Wheaton aims to optimize investment return and is currently invested in renewable energy funds. About 2 percent of the endowment portfolio is invested in a renewable resource forestry fund.
A committee of six administrators and six trustees deliberates and makes decisions on proxy votes.
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