The Richland Township campus is the future home of the School of Sustainability and the Environment.
SSE graduate students will be involved in the installation and monitoring process, gaining expertise in environmental science and sustainability.
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 $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.
As a demonstration site, the Eden Hall Campus will model a variety of different building standards and ways to live. The buildings will incorporate high-performance and integrated design, providing 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.
"Chatham is deeply committed to the regeneration of the landscape at Eden Hall, one of the largest undeveloped tracts of land in Allegheny County," according to a news release from the university.
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.
"This fall the school welcomes its first cohort of students into the Masters of Sustainability program," the news release states. "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.