"As a Catholic university it's our responsibility to serve as good stewards of the earth. So we cannot ignore the negative consequences of climate change which disproportionately impacts the world's most vulnerable people," President
Curran said about 5 percent, or close to
"This is not every coal or oil company. This is a group that holds large reserves and could have a tremendous impact on the environment," Curran said.
Though small in the face of a
Solma said a belief in the climate science, Catholic teaching, and Marianist pedagogy all informed the decision.
"Ultimately, the tremendous moral imperative to act in accordance with our mission far outweighed any other considerations," Solma said.
The decision also was influenced by the pro-environment stance taken by the current pope, according to Solma.
The investment committee worked with consultants in a complicated year-long process that at times became heated but resulted in a well-thought-out plan that won't have negative financial impact on the university, Solma said.
Divestment in domestic holdings will begin immediately. The entire process could last 18-months because it will take longer to winnow international holdings nested in hedge funds, Curran said.
The movement gained national attention in May when
"It's kind of cool to see the efforts that we put forth gaining some traction," White said. "A lot of students like to get their hands dirty, so to speak, and work on projects with faculty and the administration to try and get these projects implemented."
"Unfortunately they're doing this for the sake of good PR and they're not living in the real confines of how the world works," Bennett said. "I'm not too sure how attractive it would be to gain prospective students with the slogan, 'Bring your own candles and your sub-zero sleeping bags.'"
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