PITTSBURGH (September 13, 2012) … A $25,000 grant from the Dominion Foundation will provide support establishing Chatham University’s weather and microclimate monitoring station at Eden Hall Campus, the future home of the School of Sustainability and the Environment (SSE). Providing hands-on learning to develop expertise in environmental science and sustainability, SSE graduate students will be involved in the installation and monitoring process. Data will be incorporated into both undergraduate and graduate courses.
The grant is part of the Dominion Foundation’s Higher Education Partnership Program, which has awarded a total of $1 million in grants to 32 college and post-secondary schools across 10 states to help projects in renewable energy, environmental studies, engineering and workforce development.
Eden Hall Campus will be a demonstration site, modeling a variety of different building standards and ways to live. The buildings will incorporate high-performance, integrated design and will provide a laboratory for researching and testing best practices. Each building will be monitored to determine energy consumption and to see what methods work best.
During the 2012-13 school year, Chatham students will design and initiate environmental assessment and monitoring of meteorological, soil, and water conditions to establish baseline measures, to observe temporal and spatial patterns, and to inform sustainable development and environmental management decisions. Students will be actively involved in assessing and recommending best management practices. The datasets created by the system will be shared beyond Chatham to the benefit of teaching and design professionals in fields ranging from storm water engineering, to architecture, meteorology, and ecology.
Chatham is deeply committed to the regeneration of the landscape at Eden Hall, one of the largest undeveloped tracts of land in Allegheny County. The grant from the Dominion Higher Educational Partnership will allow Chatham students to be intimately involved in the site’s construction and development process through experiential, challenge-based courses and projects. They will determine the baseline environmental conditions of the site and monitor these conditions so as to inform the sustainable development and management of the site. In doing so, Chatham will educate students about the value of environmental monitoring and rigorous data analysis, and support research projects and food production conducted by faculty and students.
In the fall of 2012, the school will welcome its first cohort of students into the Masters of Sustainability program. This cohort will be composed of highly motivated, pioneer-minded individuals eager to take part in the Eden Hall Campus development process. As part of their first year experience, the students will begin research on the current conditions of the Eden Hall Campus landscape and will be continually involved in the evaluation of the development and management plans for the campus buildings and habitat.
Dominion is one of the nation’s largest producers and transporters of energy, with a portfolio of approximately 28,000 megawatts of generation. Dominion operates the nation’s largest natural gas storage system and serves retail energy customers in 15 states. For more information about Dominion, visit the company’s website at www.dom.com.
About Chatham University
Chatham University’s historic Shadyside Campus, founded in 1869, is located in the heart of Pittsburgh, Pa., on a designated urban arboretum within walking distance of some of the city’s most vibrant neighborhoods. With accelerated bachelor’s and graduate programs, residential and low-residency degree programs, and comprehensive online programming, Chatham students can balance their personal lives while continuing their education. Preparing students from around the world, Chatham’s enrollment throughout the past decade was the fastest-growing in the region. In 2008, Chatham became the largest university in Allegheny County with the addition of its Eastside facility in East Liberty and the 388-acre Eden Hall Campus in Pine-Richland, the future home of the School of Sustainability and the Environment, which will be a place of learning, research, and practicing sustainable behaviors that can be replicated elsewhere to make the world a better place.
The Chatham College for Women is dedicated to fostering the next generation of women leaders with more than 40 majors, internship and study abroad opportunities, and an academic approach developed to help students think creatively and communicate more effectively. Consistently ranked among the top master’s level institutions in the Northeast by U.S. News & World Report and The Princeton Review, Chatham’s College for Graduate Studies and College for Continuing and Professional Studies offers co-educational post-baccalaureate, graduate, and doctoral programs. Integrating strong community partnerships and innovative programming in such burgeoning fields as sustainability and the health sciences, Chatham programs are designed to meet the needs of tomorrow’s economy.
Chatham has demonstrated institutional commitments to reach carbon neutrality by 2025 and has been recognized as a leader in sustainability by The Princeton Review, the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency, the League of American Bicyclists, and Citizens for Pennsylvania’s Future. Chatham’s School of Sustainability and the Environment will be a place of learning, research and practicing sustainable behaviors that can be replicated elsewhere to make the world a better place.