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JCU doesn’t make the grade

October 29th, 2009

John Carroll has once again received a poor grade from greenreportcard.org. This year the University received a D+ as its overall grade, which is a slight improvement over last year’s grade of D.

These grades are unacceptable, especially two years in a row. JCU must do better.

The University’s grade was a composite of grades in several categories. The administration received an F, as did shareholder engagement. This grade was given due to a lack of a sustainability committee on campus to report to the Rev. Robert Niehoff. There are plans to create this committee, which would include faculty, administration, students and alumni. This could be in place by next year.

The green report card brings environmental areas the University is lacking in to the attention of the administration. It should act to correct these shortcomings as quickly as possible, rather than waiting until next year.

The only category JCU got anything higher than a C in was Food & Recycling which received a B. While the University has made improvements such as using recyclable floor materials, lighting upgrades for more efficiency, using motion sensors in some bathrooms so lights are not on at all times and putting in blow dryers to replace paper towels, the University needs to continue to make more improvements based on the areas in which it is lacking according to the report card.

The University is working to make improvements, but the results do not reflect that work. “Our focus is not on the grade, but to establish long term practices that can be supported,” said Jonathan Smith, vice president and executive assistant to the president. Perhaps the focus should be on finding a way to do both.