University President John J. DeGioia met with members of GU Fossil Free yesterday and informed them that the Committee on Investments and Social Responsibility will vote on their proposal in January 2015, as opposed to end of the academic year.
GU Fossil Free presented their proposal to CISR in late October after hosting a rally outside McShain Lounge. If CISR votes on the proposal, which calls for the university to divest from fossil fuel companies, it will be sent to the Board of Directors for consideration in February 2015.
“Our conversation with President DeGioia highlighted the breadth of support our campaign has on all three Georgetown campuses from undergraduates, graduates, faculty, staff and alumni,” GU Fossil Free member Chloe Lazarus (COL ’16) wrote in an email. “We illustrated to President DeGioia the problems we have had with the Committee on Investments and Social Responsibility and how we feel our proposal deserves to be heard at the Board of Directors meeting in February because this is an urgent matter.”
GU Fossil Free scheduled this meeting with DeGioia after meeting with his Chief of Staff Joseph Ferrara (GRD ’96) Nov. 13. Despite Ferrara’s agreement, GU Fossil Free followed through with a rally in Red Square and a march to DeGioia’s office in Healy Hall the next day.
Lazarus wrote that DeGioia seemed responsive and interested in the campaign during the meeting.
“We are very excited to hear that the Committee on Investments and Social Responsibility will be voting on our proposal in January and that we are moving forward on our goal to present to the Board of Directors in February 2015,” Lazarus wrote. “I would say that President DeGioia has been very cooperative and responsive to our campaign. I believe that we are all fighting the same fight and we have an opportunity to work together to make Georgetown a true leader in environmental progress.”
DeGioia posted photos of the meeting with GU Fossil Free on his Facebook page yesterday.
“I want to take a moment to thank the members of the GU Fossil Free organization here on our campus for the important work they are doing to engage with the members of our community on issues of sustainability,” DeGioia wrote on Facebook. “I had the opportunity to meet with them this morning and I wish to again express my appreciation for the time and thought they have dedicated to these matters. I look forward to continuing the conversation we began today in the time ahead.”
Currently, 14 U.S. colleges, including Stanford University, Hampshire College and San Francisco State University, have approved divestment from fossil fuel companies.