Which Colleges Are the Greenest in the US?

For the fourth year, the Princeton Review has released a guidebook that profiles the greenest colleges in the US.

"The Princeton Review’s Guide to 322 Green Colleges: 2013 Edition" is produced in collaboration with the Center for Green Schools at the U.S. Green Building Council (USGBC).  

Schools included in the guide scored high on Princeton Review’s "green rating" system, which weighs criteria such as academic offerings and career preparation, transportation and construction policies, energy consumption, recycling and waste diversion, greenhouse gas reporting and climate change initiatives, and organic food.

The guide profiles each school and lists schools that have LEED-certified buildings and who are signatories of the American College & University Presidents’ Climate Commitment.

For example, Santa Clara University’s "Sustainability Across the Curriculum" project trains all faculty on how to integrate environment and sustainability into all curriculum. Schools like Georgetown University and Wisconsin’s Northland College offer environmental literacy courses to undergraduates. And many schools offer courses on renewable energy, organic agriculture and other key sustainability topics.

Solar and wind at Northland College:

Solar at Northland College

21 schools are on the Green Honor Roll, receiving the highest scores possible. They are spread across the country:

American University
Arizona University
California Institute of Technology 
California State University at Chico
Catawba College, North Carolina
Chatham University, Pennsylvania
College of the Atlantic, Maine
Columbia University
Georgia Institute of Technology 
Goucher College, Maryland
Green Mountain College, Vermont
Harvard College
Northeastern University, Massachusetts
San Francisco State University
University of California-Santa Cruz
University of South Carolina-Columbia
University of Washington
University of Wisconsin-Oshkosh
University of Wisconsin-Stevens Point
Vanderbilt University
Wilson College, North Carolina 

The Princeton Review, best known for its education and test-prep services, prepared the first edition in 2010 to help college-bound students evaluate schools based on green criteria

"Among 9,955 college applicants who participated in our 2013 ‘College Hopes & Worries Survey,’ 62% said having information about a school’s commitment to the environment would influence their decision to apply to or attend the school," noted Robert Franek, Senior VP at Princeton Review.  

Sierra magazine also rates colleges, and this year, University of California, Davis tops their list.

Here’s the guide:

Website: [sorry this link is no longer available]     
(Visited 9,096 times, 15 visits today)

Comments on “Which Colleges Are the Greenest in the US?”

  1. JimmyCrack Corn

    Who gives a rip if colleges are “green”. If a school is “greener” than another does this mean that the lower overhead is manifest as a reduction in tuition????


    If they are GREEN by LEEDS standards they are not green at all – LEEDS kills more trees in paper, midnight oil and slow fat bureaucrats and should be banned as in North Carolina. Hoorah North Carolina. We need a Net Zero standard and the elimination of the entire LEEDS government program.

  3. Rob

    sorry to disagree, but I think colleges should not only teach about what getting green involves, they should walk the talk as well. And LEED is the best way so far to tell whether places are actually doing the walk, or just claiming it. It could be better, and will get replaced in time, but there needs to be a standard here, and this is what we’ve got.

  4. Chris

    How are you missing Oberlin College? Really?
    They have been green before it became the new black.
    What other school has a “living machine” attached to their science building?
    Put Oberlin College in your list next time.


Post Your Comment

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *