For the college-bound or those who want to work in higher education, the just-published 7th Annual CoolSchools Survey by Sierra Club maps out the greenest colleges and universities. Free and online, it ranks 162 schools in the US, including the Top 10 greenest colleges and universities. The rankings are based on institutions’ filling out and returning an online survey with specific factors –energy efficiency, food, recycling, water, curriculum and others.
This year’s Top Ten (ranked 1-10) are: University of Connecticut (UConn), Dickinson College, University of California (UC) Irvine, UC Davis, Cornell University, Green Mountain College, Stanford University, Georgia Institute of Technology, American University, UC Santa Barbara. See the Top Ten slide show
Five stayed on from 2012
Five institutions are holdovers from the 2012 Top 10 rankings: UC Davis (#1 in 2012) Georgia Tech (# 2), Stanford University (#3), UConn (#5), UC Irvine (#9). See link below for Green News’ Cool Schools story in 2012.
You can learn who’s greenest and why by reviewing the complete survey results. An additional 152 schools are ranked in the CoolSchools for 2013. Remember that other “green school” surveys – namely the one done by Princeton University, employ a different methodology for their ratings.
What does it mean ?
More than ever, academia is addressing the realities of rising costs with efforts to reduce infrastructure and operating costs through energy efficiency (windows, boilers, sustainably designed dorms), recycling rather than landfills, reducing food waste, bicycling and transit over cars and parking lots.
It also means that students are looking for careers in sustainability, engineering, design and other fields where they can put green skills to work. (Dickinson College #2 in the 2013 Top Ten has incorporated sustainability throughout its four-year curriculum).
Check out other stories in Green News Update (below) on green schools.
Greenest Colleges Ranked (2012 Sierra Club and Princeton Review findings)
Greenest campus in the Pittsburgh Region (Chatham University # 24 in 2013)