Princeton U to Dissociate From Fossil Fuel Companies

The university recently established an administrative process for dissociating from companies engaged in climate disinformation campaigns or that are involved in the thermal coal and tar sands segments of the fossil fuel industry. The university also has committed to reducing the aggregate harmful climate impact of the entirety of the university’s direct and indirect endowment holdings.

Tulane U Increases Minimum Wage to $15 Per Hour

In an effort to support income growth and greater equity and economic well-being in the community, the university recently announced an increase in minimum wage for all staff from $10.82 per hour to $15 per hour, effective Oct. 1. The university will also standardize student wages by raising the minimum hourly rate to $10, and is giving special consideration to outside contractors who pay a $15 per hour minimum wage or who have a documented plan within a reasonable timeframe to achieve that rate.

U Virginia to Reduce Single-Use Plastics

Following a state executive order requiring state agencies to stop buying, selling and distributing certain plastics, the university stopped purchasing single-use plastic bags, plastic cutlery, plastic food containers and plastic straws as of July 21. The university will also phase out plastic water bottles and plastic bag liners over the coming year to the extent possible.

Texas A&M U Launches Social Justice Leadership Certificate

The new certificate is designed for nonprofit leaders committed to accelerating racial equity within nonprofit organizations. The online, asynchronous program is a non-credit-bearing professional education opportunity for nonprofit practitioners. It consists of five three-week courses that can be completed in approximately four months.

Two California CCs Shift Toward Open Education Resources

With a goal of increasing access, Compton Community College recently announced a goal of using 85 to 100 percent open educational resources (OER), rather than textbooks, by 2035, while College of the Canyons is aiming for a third of its courses to eliminate textbooks over the next two years.

Pennsylvania State U Approves New $250K Sustainability Fund

With the approval of the university’s budget by the board of trustees last month, a new yearly $250,000 Environmental Sustainability Fund from the University Park Student Fee Board will take effect in the 2021-22 academic year. Establishment of this fund will not increase student fees.

Georgetown U Starts MS in Environment & Sustainability Mgmt

A collaboration among the Georgetown Environment Initiative, the Graduate School of Arts & Sciences, and the McDonough School of Business, the 11-month, STEM-designated program is geared toward those seeking to help organizations reduce their impact on the environment by harnessing the power of business. The program will begin August 2022.

Nine Georgia HEIs Receive $300K for State Climate Consortium

The Ray C. Anderson Foundation has awarded a $300,000 grant to the next phase of the Georgia Climate Project, a state-wide consortium of nine colleges and universities working to strengthen Georgia’s ability to prepare for and respond to a changing climate. With this new grant, the project will engage a diverse network of experts to develop and disseminate knowledge on climate impacts and solutions through webinars, workshops, and an online Georgia climate information portal.

U Southern California Hires Chief Sustainability Officer

Michael “Mick” Dalrymple was recently named USC’s first chief sustainability officer. Dalrymple comes to USC from Arizona State University, where he served as the director of University Sustainability Practices for five years. Dalrymple’s position as USC’s first chief sustainability officer comes with a charge of implementing a forthcoming 2028 sustainability plan that contains such goals as achieving carbon neutrality and zero waste.

Washtenaw CC to Source 100% Renewable Energy

The community college recently announced a green power partnership with its electric utility. The partnership commits the college to an escalating enrollment that will begin in 2023 and increase annually with the college sourcing 100 percent of its electric power needs through clean energy by 2029.

U Bristol Certifies 990 Labs Through LEAF Program

(U.K.) Each of the 990 laboratories at the university have gained certification through the Laboratory Efficiency Assessment Framework (LEAF) Program, administered by the University College London. The program focuses on the reduction of environmental impact of labs by promoting actions that save water, plastic, energy and other resources through better waste management, equipment efficiency, chemical management and procurement.

Hope College Pilots New Financial Model for Tuition

The college announced recently a new pilot program whereby instead of charging tuition before receiving an education, the college will ask students to give to the college after they graduate, paying-it-forward to future students. Called Hope Forward, the program will welcome a cohort of 22 students this fall whose tuition will be fully funded by an anonymous donor. In the future, the college aims to fully fund tuition for all students.

Virginia State U Clears Account Balances for Pandemic Period

The university recently announced that it will clear all unpaid tuition and fee balances for students enrolled during the COVID-19 pandemic impact period of spring, summer, fall and winter 2020, and spring 2021 semesters. The payoff applies only to balances currently owed to the university.