Success Stories

One of the most powerful arguments for responsible investment is to compare examples of successes at peer institutions. We encourage you to share examples such as this list (which is not comprehensive) with your administration.


UC Student Association

UC Student Assocation passed a resolution to move their money from US Bank. See the resolution here. 

Duke University

Duke committed to invest $5 million in the Latino Community Credit Union in 2006 to support fair low-income consumer and mortgage lending.

Fordham University 

In 2011, REC Student Organizer Brett Vetterlein led a campaign to get Fordham invested in its Bronx, New York community. The school has pledged $500,000 between a local Federal Credit Union and a local development bank. This money will be used to provide much needed loans to Bronx citizens and enrich financial services within the community.

Harvard University

In the year 2000, Harvard University lent $20 million in low-interest, twenty-year loans to three community development loan funds in the Boston Area: Boston Community Capital, the Cambridge Affordable Housing Trust, and the Local Initiatives Support Corporation.

Macalester College  

With the help of REC, students at Macalester successfully campaigned for Macalester to pursue community investment. In 2007, the school made a significant investment in University Bank, a local CDFI that serves the Twin Cities. The new banking relationship has been mutually beneficial. Students have benefited from increased curriculum offerings, such as classes focused on micro-lending and green banking methods, and internships are offered through the bank. Students can also deposit in the bank’s Socially Responsible Deposit Fund, a fund that offers a socially responsible investment options that supports the local disadvantaged Twin Cities communities. To read more about the Macalester’s work with University Bank, click here. Also, you can find Macalester student Sandy Robson’s personal experience of the campaign here.

Mount Holyoke College  

Students at Mount Holyoke worked with REC and their school’s Socially Responsible Investment Committee to create a Responsible Investment Fund in 2005. The fund opened with $25,000, with $7,000 of it to be invested in the Cooperative Fund of New England, a CDFI in Western Massachusetts. As an added benefit to the community, the interest generated from the fund will be put towards a scholarship fund for students from Western Massachusetts. Read what friends of REC Rose Levine and Moki Macias had to say about their experience here.

Peralta Community College

Peralta Community College in Oakland, California, with an annual budget of $140 million, passed a resolution in November 2011 to move its money from the big banks to community based financial institutions.

Seattle University  

The administration at Seattle agreed to place $100,000 from the operating budget into Community Capital Develop, a local micro-enterprise firm that serves the Central District of Seattle. Community Capital Development gives micro-loans to community members to spur entrepreneurial development, access to capital, job creation, and self-sufficiency. Students at Seattle also have co-curricular opportunities available at the bank, such as an internship program that gives students direct control over the disbursement of microloans under the guidance of CCD senior banking staff. Seattle differs from more typical community investment, as Community Capital Development is not FDIC-insured. However, Seattle University feels the partnership is appropriate and worthwhile, demonstrating that community investment models can vary and should be individualized to a school’s needs. Read what REC’s Northwest Student Organizer at Seattle wrote about this unique approach to community investing here.

Tufts University

Tufts agreed to a $500,000 community investment in 2011 at the request of students and the Advisory Committee on Endowment Responsibility.

University of Cincinatti

REC applauds the University of Cincinatti for the largest community investment to date: nearly $150 million, or 13.6% of their endowment, finances low-interest loans and community redevelopment efforts in the area. To learn more, check out the detailed case study in the Democracy Collaborative’s “The Road Half Traveled: University Engagement at a Crossroads.”

University of Louisville

The University of Louisville holds approximately $10 million in community investments.

Next Step: Your Campus >>


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