The College has been named to The Princeton Review’s “Top 50 Green Colleges,” an annual ranking that highlights the country’s most environmentally responsible colleges.
Union is among 413 schools profiled in the 10th edition of the Review’s "Guide to Green Colleges.” The College has been included in each edition, but this is the first time the school has earned a spot among the top 50.
Schools were chosen based on data collected from more than 700 four-year colleges on their sustainability-related policies, practices and programs. Only schools with a Green Rating of 80 or higher were included in the guide.
Union achieved a Green Rating of 94. The College was cited for its Presidential Green Grants program, the U-Sustain committee and other initiatives.
“We are proud to be recognized as one of the greenest colleges in the country,” said Jeffrey Corbin, professor of biology. He co-chairs the U-Sustain committee along with Laura McManus Spencer, professor of chemistry.
“The work to make our operations sustainable is done by a large group of students, staff and faculty. Recognition from the Princeton Review highlights how we continue to set more and more ambitious goals - to reduce our energy use, to be good stewards, and to help our students find their environmental passions inside and outside the classroom.”
The profiles in the guide include information about each school’s admission requirements, cost and financial aid, and student body statistics. They also include “Green Facts” about the schools with details on the availability of transportation alternatives and the percentage of the food budgets spent on local/organic.
“We salute—and strongly recommend— Union to the many environmentally-minded students who want to study and live at a green college," said Rob Franek, The Princeton Review's editor-in-chief.
Franek noted that college applicants and their parents are increasingly concerned about the environment and sustainability issues. Among the nearly 12,000 teens and parents the Review surveyed earlier this year for its 2019 College Hopes & Worries Survey, 64 percent said that having information about a college's commitment to the environment would influence their decision to apply to or attend the school.
In 2007, Union was among the first to sign the American College and University Presidents Climate Commitment (ACUPCC), pledging to reduce the College's carbon footprint and provide research and education about climate change.
Union has developed a long-term plan to be carbon neutral by 2060.
The free guide is available here.