Facilities and Services


The role of Swarthmore's Facilities and Services Division is to plan, design, provide, and maintain teaching spaces, working spaces, gathering spaces, and living spaces that relate directly to Swarthmore's mission. Architectural and interior design on campus reflects the value we place on community, diverse teaching environments, small classes, faculty-student research, learning that occurs both inside and outside of the classroom, environmental stewardship, and participatory governance. These spaces provide a comfortable, pleasant, and safe environment for students, faculty, and staff so that the focus on academic excellence remains at the forefront.

The division routinely works with a consulting firm, Sightlines, in an ongoing multi- year process to evaluate the effectiveness of the program and the appropriateness of our reinvestment rate. This provides a way to accurately and decisively measure, monitor, and benchmark the physical asset performance of the campus.

Facilities and Services

  • Facilities and Services Special Projects
  • Facilities and Services Technology
  • Planning and Construction
  • Maintenance
  • Grounds
  • Environmental Services
  • Lang Performing Arts Center
  • ADA program

The departments in the College Services areas are diverse, but share a commitment to excellence and service in support of the academic mission of the College.

College Services

  • Scott Arboretum
  • Post Office
  • Dining Services
  • Bookstore
  • Public Safety
  • Environmental Health and Safety

Directors in Facilities and Services annually establish performance goals. In 2011-12 leaders and team members from the division participated in a "Teams that Work" leadership exercise, conducted by consultants from the Effectiveness Institute, a consultant group of training and performance professionals. Training and team-building activities such as this are conducted annually.

Other examples of activities aimed at Institutional Effectiveness include:

  • Dining Services participates in the biennial data collection for the National Association of College and University Food Services (NACUFS) Operating Benchmark Survey.
  • The bookstore participates in the National Association of College Stores Industry Financial Report.
  • The Scott Arboretum was accredited by the American Association of Museums in 1995 and re-accredited in 2006, signifying its professional standards of operation as a museum of living plants. The accreditation process requires detailed reporting to reflect the effectiveness of the arboretum's activities.
  • The Planning and Construction area conducts annual evaluations of facilities capital expenditures. The area also conducts post-occupancy user satisfaction surveys.
  • The Maintenance area benchmarks levels of maintenance for all areas of the campus, on appropriate routine schedules.
  • The ADA support area annually reports on ADA programming to the Justice Department.
  • A comprehensive evaluation of the Public Safety area was conducted by external consultants in 2012, identifying areas of strength and vulnerability to inform programming and planning.
  • An Assessment of Dining Services was conducted by an outside consultant, Petit Consulting LLC in 2013 with a report furnished in August 2013. These results are being used to inform ongoing programming.
  • In May, 2013, the College's Parking and Transportation Master Plan Advisory Committee, with consultants Chance Management Advisors, administered a survey to students and a different survey to faculty and staff. The response rates for both surveys were well above response rates typical at other colleges: 32.8% of students responded, and 54.8% of faculty and staff. The direct answers showed a variety of opinion, while the optional write-in answers displayed both thoughtfulness and a realization of the subject's complexity.  The results of the surveys are informing the work of the new Transportation and Parking Committee, whose work continues through 2014-15.
  • Public Safety conducted a survey of community perceptions about safety in spring 2014, and is currently analyzing the results.
  • A comprehensive and inclusive master planning process was completed in 2014.   Learn more about the process and review the Camps Master Plan final report at  http://www.swarthmore.edu/campus-master-plan.xml