Endowment Value: $776 million (June 2018)
The University of New Hampshire is a public research university with its main campus in Durham, New Hampshire. It has a student body of approximately 15,000 across its six campuses. The UNH Foundation manages the endowment.
UNH considers sustainability to be a "university-wide endeavor" and a core value underpinning all university academics, research, and operations. UNH has received a perfect score on the Princeton Review’s Green College Honor Roll and as of 2019, is one of only four universities to have received a Platinum STARS rating from the Association for the Advancement of Sustainability in Higher Education (AASHE), which measures sustainability leadership in operations, academics, and investments.
The University’s commitment to sustainability, largely thanks to conversations sparked by students, is now being increasingly integrated into its endowment investment practices. Since 2017, the UNH Committee on Investor Responsibility (CIR) with its membership including students, faculty, alumni, endowment stakeholders, and external advisors, has helped support the Foundation in sustainable, socially responsible investment practices and policies through actions such as:
UNHF’s investment policy takes a multi-pronged approach, including positive and negative screening, full ESG integration into financial analysis, and active ownership through shareholder engagement opportunities. Furthermore, ESG factors are also strongly considered in manager selection and monitoring process is a responsibility shared by the investment committee, Foundation staff and our investment consultants. As a signatory of the United Nations Principles for Responsible Investment, much of the Foundation’s sustainable investment commitments are guided by those principles.
UNHF currently has an environmental, social and governance (ESG) endowment pool, which was created in 2015. The initial $1 million seed funding has grown to approximately $40 million as of March 2019. In 2017, the Foundation also invested $3 million into the NH Community Loan Fund as a component of the fixed income segment of the main pool. NHCLF is the Foundation’s first direct impact investment with a purpose to make affordable financing options available to economically disadvantaged individuals and communities in New Hampshire.
University of New Hampshire is a participant or member of the following Initiatives & Commitments:
Other Sustainable Investing Resources, Practices and News:
UNH President Dean signs IEN/Second Nature Call to Action for Higher Education Leadership | University of New Hampshire Website
Sustainable Investing at UNH | University of New Hampshire Website
UNH Expands Sustainability Leadership with Alignment of Investments and Values | UNH Newsroom, May 2019
Panel: An Introduction to The IEN Roadmap & How The University of New Hampshire Intentionally Invests l Intentional Endowments Network and WISE, May 2019
Q&A Series: Making an ESG Impact Through Public Fixed Income l Intentional Endowments Network, April 2019
Q&A Series: The Power and Impact of Community Investing l Intentional Endowments Network, September 2018
Article: Feature School - University of New Hampshire l Intentional Endowments Network, Quarterly Newsletter, July 2018
Panel: What Might Community Investing look Like for a College Endowment? l Intentional Endowments Network, Community Investing Roundtable, June 2018
Endowment Value: $22.9 million (February 2018)
Northland College is a private liberal arts college in Ashland, Wisconsin, with a student body of around 600 that focuses on the environment and sustainability. The Board of Trustees oversees the management of Northland’s endowment.
In 2017, Northland College formed the Committee on Investor Responsibility (CIR) consider fossil fuel divestment though its role has subsequently been expanded to include the full scope of sustainable investment including making recommendations on socially and environmentally responsible investment opportunities and proxy voting advice. In February, 2018, the Board of Trustees authorized Northern Trust Company, its primary financial manager, to begin implementing the Board's proposal to realign funds to accommodate the removal of fossil fuels from the endowment over the course of five years.
Northland College is a participant or member of the following Initiatives & Commitments:
Endowment Value: $471.8 million (June 2018)
Loyola Marymount University is a private research university located in Los Angeles, California. The LMU Board of Trustees’ Endowment Committee manages its endowment.
In July of 2017, LMU became a signatory of the United Nations-supported Principles for Responsible Investment. The agreement is the result of a two-year exploration of responsible investing on campus, which included active engagement among trustees and administrators, student groups, and the university’s Jesuit community. LMU is the first Jesuit Catholic university to become a signatory in the United States.
“LMU continues to be a vanguard of environmental responsibility and sustainability in higher education, and we are proud to uphold the Principles for Responsible Investment,” said President Timothy Law Snyder, Ph.D. “We prepare our students to thrive as thought leaders and global citizens to create a better planet for those here and for those to come. Ever mindful of LMU’s mission to provide a whole-person approach to our education, we seek to catalyze education, innovation, and stewardship initiatives that benefit humankind. We lead by example, and we hope that our partnership with PRI will inspire other institutions to incorporate environmental and social decision-making into their investments.”
As of Spring 2019, LMU’s responsible investing advisory committee (RIAC), formed in November 2017, finalized a Responsible Investment Policy and the University proactively invests in various types of clean and sustainable energy, both in its endowment and with respect to its campus.
Loyola Marymount University is a participant or member of the following Initiatives & Commitments:
Other Sustainable Investing Practices:
Endowment Value: $$878.4 million (June 2018)
Carleton College is a private college, located in Northfield, Minnesota. The Carleton Responsible Investment Committee (CRIC) was established in 2005 and is comprised of students, staff, and faculty. The primary purpose of the CRIC is to make recommendations about the management of the endowment to the Board of Trustees that embody Carleton's values. For example, within the past three years, The Committee has supported multiple shareholder resolutions that strengthened environmental, social and governance policies of companies within its investment portfolio.
In addition, in lieu of growing student interest and mobilization around fossil fuel divestment, students from the CRIC organized a student-led town hall discussion on the pros and cons of divestment in the fossil fuel industry
According to the most recent STARS Report, “while Carleton does not have a sustainable investment policy, the College aims to invest with managers whose standards of propriety, fairness, and ethical integrity align with those of the College. The College tries to select managers that will generate superior returns, but not at all costs, and make investments in a responsible manner that takes into account societal impacts.” The College also reports that a percentage of it’s endowment portfolio is invested in sustainable industries such as renewable energy and sustainable forestry.
Carleton College is a participant or member of the following Initiatives & Commitments:
Other Sustainable Investing Practices and News:
Endowment Value: $10.8 billion (June 2018)
Columbia University is a private institution located in New York City. The Columbia Investment Management Company (CIMC) manages the University's endowment. Columbia established the Advisory Committee on Socially Responsible Investing (ASCRI) as a permanent addition to the University in March 2000. The Committee's purpose is to advise the University Trustees on ethical and social issues that arise in the management of the investments in the University's endowment. To ensure that the Committee is broadly representative of the University community, its twelve voting members are drawn in equal proportion from students, faculty, and alumni of the University.
The ACSRI maintains clear and comprehensive guidelines for the endowment’s socially responsible investment proxy voting that includes positions on a variety of issues including the environment. According to The University’s most recent STARS report, Columbia currently performs negative screenings for tobacco producers/manufacturers, private prison operators, companies deriving more than 35% of their revenue in thermal coal production, and those implicated in human rights abuses. Like most Ivy League Universities, Columbia has considered various student initiated proposals to divest from all fossil fuels, the most recent being in 2012, but has yet to adopt explicit policies.
In addition to various sustainability initiatives across campus and operations, Columbia University houses the Columbia Center on Sustainable Investment (CCSI), which is a joint center of Columbia Law School and the Earth Institute at Columbia University, and the only university-based applied research center and forum dedicated to the study, practice and discussion of sustainable international investment.
Columbia University is a participant or member of the following Initiatives & Commitments:
Other Sustainable Investing Practices and Resources from Columbia University:
Endowment Value: $84.9 million (June 2018)
Chatham University has an enrollment of over 2,200 students and over 60 undergraduate and graduate programs in four areas of excellence: sustainability; health & lab sciences; business & communication; and the arts & humanities. All undergraduates, save for those in the nursing program, are required to take a course on sustainability.
Currently, Chatham is among the five higher education institutions out of Pennsylvania’s 164 colleges and universities to formally adopt and apply ESG practices as part of their investment strategy. The University’s sustainable investment policy outlines key guiding principles that include reducing fossil fuel investments, advocating against corporations that deny climate change, and favoring investments that have positive environmental impacts, promote sustainability and support positive local community development. More than 13 percent of Chatham’s investment pool is in positive sustainable investments.
With regards to Chatham University’s efforts to divest its endowment funds from fossil fuels, administration has worked closely with students on the Student Investment Team (SIT) and committee on investor responsibility to assess they University’s exposure to fossil fuels and draft recommendations towards sustainable investing. In the Spring of 2017, the investment committee of the Board of Trustees voted to approve two new investment opportunities that are specifically aimed at excluding fossil fuels and supporting sustainable energy. Chatham’s Senior Vice President of Finance, Walt Fowler, said reducing the university’s support of fossil fuel companies is in line with its goal of pursuing sustainability in every part of its operations. “It’s important to us ethically, because we believe the world needs to reduce their use of fossil fuels,” Fowler said. At the end of this year, the university will replace a hedge fund with a private equity fund focused exclusively on supporting wind power. It will also swap investment in a standard equity fund, which includes fossil fuel companies, for a BNY Mellon fund that is filtered specifically for green companies but matches the performance of the current fund.
Chatham University is a participant or member of the following Initiatives & Commitments:
Other Sustainable Investing Practices and News:
Endowment Value: $1.6 billion (2019)
The University of British Columbia (UBC) is a global centre for teaching, learning and research, consistently ranked among the top 20 public universities in the world and recently recognized as North America’s most international university. UBC has over 64,000 students located across 2 campuses, and manages approximately $600 million in research funding for thousands of projects. The UBC Point Grey campus is situated on the traditional, ancestral, and unceded territory of the Musqueam (xwməθkwəy̓əm) people, and the Okanagan campus is situated on the territory of the Syilx Okanagan Nation.
UBC puts sustainability at the heart of teaching, learning and research, operations and infrastructure, and community and our sustainability efforts are proudly delivered by a rich diversity of people across campus. In 1990, UBC signed the Talloires Declaration, a 10-point action plan for incorporating sustainability into higher education. UBC was the first university in Canada to adopt a sustainable development policy in 1997, and the first to open an office devoted to campus sustainability in 1998. In 2010, UBC set bold targets to reduce its carbon footprint, a concept that has its roots in research by two UBC professors. By 2016, UBC achieved a 34% reduction in GHG emissions compared to 2007 levels and is on track to reduce GHG emissions by 67% by 2021. In 2019, UBC was ranked first globally by the Times Higher Education Impact Ranking under Sustainable Development Goal (SDG) #13 for taking urgent action to combat climate change and its impacts. In 2020, UBC was again ranked first globally for taking action to mitigate climate change as well as first for conserving life under water by protecting marine habitats (SDG #14), the only university globally to rank first in more than one goal.
UBC first formally incorporated ESG into our investment practices in 2013 through the board approved Responsible Investing Policy and introduced a low carbon, fossil fuel free endowment in 2017. In late 2019, the UBC Board of Governors committed to divesting the endowment portfolio from fossil fuel investments and approved the adoption of a comprehensive responsible investing framework to address climate change and other ESG goals in line with UBC’s broader priorities.
The University of British Columbia is a participant or member of the following Initiatives & Commitments:
Other UBC Information:
Endowment Value: $887.4 million (June 2018)
Oberlin College is a four-year liberal arts college and conservatory of music with a student body of around 3,000. Located in Oberlin, Ohio, the campus has as suburban atmosphere. Oberlin's board of trustees manages the endowment.
The Office of Environment Sustainability has been implementing programs throughout the campus and educational curriculum to fulfill carbon neutrality and sustainability goals. In order to engage students, staff members, and the surrounding community, Oberlin hosts an annual Ecolympics. The Ecolympics is comprised of several sustainability oriented competitions. Along with the competitions, the school hosts sustainability workshops, educational campaigns, and film sessions throughout the ceremonies.
In 2013 the board of trustees allocated $5 million to establish the Impact Investment Platform (IIP) Subcommittee of the Board of Trustees Investment Committee to provide guidance to the Investment Committee on social and environmental issues. The IIP established an investment policy that would consider proposals submitted by any student, alum or faculty for divestment from entities that contribute to activities that "shock the conscience”. Such parameters include instances of human suffering, natural calamity and injury and Oberlin currently conducts 100% negative screening within its portfolio based on these parameters.
Oberlin College is a participant or member of the following Initiatives & Commitments:
Other Sustainable Investing Practices:
Endowment Value: $715 million (June 2018)
Villanova University is a private research Roman Catholic university located in Radnor Township, Pennsylvania. Founded by the Order of Saint Augustine in 1842, VU is the oldest Catholic university in the Commonwealth of Pennsylvania. It has a student body of approximately 6,800 students.
In 2007, Father Donohue signed the American College & University Presidents’ Climate Commitment (ACUPCC), vowing that Villanova would achieve carbon neutrality by 2050. To achieve this, Villanova will invest in improving campus infrastructure efficiency, as well as purchase carbon offsets and renewable energy for the energy required to run campus operations. In April 2014, Father Peter signed the St. Francis Pledge, committing the University to protect God's Creation and advocate on behalf of people in poverty who face the hardest impacts of global climate change.
In January 2019, over 200 students and faculty held a town hall meeting to discuss the issue of climate change. Proposals at the meeting called upon the administration to take stronger initiatives including hiring new personnel, both in faculty and operations, to focus on climate change, moving to being carbon neutral by 2030 instead of 2050, creating a new Center for Sustainability and divesting any fossil fuel investments.
Villanova has a Committee on Social Responsibility Proxy Votes that is comprised of faculty, student, and staff representatives. It conducts its activities in accordance with the investment guidelines issued by the US Conference of Catholic Bishops. It was established in order to fulfill Villanova’s investment policies that require exercising its rights as a shareholder to vote proxies in a socially responsible manner.
Villanova’s School of Business is home to the first socially responsible student managed fund in the country which invests in socially responsible mutual funds with positive screens.
Villanova University is a participant or member of the following Initiatives & Commitments:
Other Sustainable Investing Practices
Endowment Value: $236.5 million (May 2018)
Lewis & Clark College is a private liberal arts college located in Portland, Oregon.The Board of Trustees manages Lewis and Clark's endowment. Since the 1990’s, the college has utilized its Sustainability Council comprised of students and faculty to lead environmental education and initiatives among its now 3,500 students. Lewis & Clark College has a strong legacy of integrating sustainability on its campus and has earned itself the number one spot on Princeton Review’s “Green Colleges” list in 2015 (and continues to rank high today) and has been named one of Sierra Club’s ‘Cool Schools. For example, the college boasts sourcing 100% of its energy from wind and is only one of thirty higher education institutions nationwide to divest from all fossil fuel holdings in the endowment.
Spurred largely by student divestment campaigns, In February of 2018, the Lewis & Clark Board of Trustees voted to divest from all fossil fuel holdings in the endowment by 2023. The college’s investment policy is also guided by a set of ESG Guidelines in addition to explicit fossil fuel divestment. The Operations Committee of the Sustainability Council is charged with advising on proxy voting for investments and contributing to ESG program development/re-assessment, with several members also participating in a Divestment Sub-Committee.
Lewis and Clark College is a participant or member of the following Initiatives & Commitments:
Other Sustainable Investing Practices: