AUBURN UNIVERSITY – Auburn University has been named one of the 332 most environmentally responsible colleges in the United States and Canada in “The Princeton Review’s Guide to 332 Green Colleges.”
The education services company selected Auburn University for inclusion in the recently released fifth annual edition of its book created in partnership with the U.S. Green Building Council. Schools were chosen for the guide based on a survey conducted in 2013 of administrators at hundreds of four-year colleges to measure each school’s commitment to the environment and to sustainability. The survey included questions on schools’ course offerings, campus infrastructures, activities and career preparation.
“The university has set bold energy conservation goals and is ahead of schedule in achieving increases in energy efficiency and conservation,” the guide’s profile of Auburn University reads. “Alternative transportation options are expanding. The campus has a more pedestrian-friendly design; provides a transit system with on-campus hybrid buses; and has bike-, car-, and ride-sharing programs. Auburn built the first LEED Gold building in Alabama and currently has five LEED Gold buildings on campus with more on the way.”
“It is gratifying to see Auburn’s commitment to sustainability acknowledged in this meaningful way,” said Michael Kensler, director of the Office of Sustainability. “Higher education has a very important role to play in modeling sustainable practices and preparing students to make a difference, and Auburn has embraced these responsibilities in service to the university’s mission as a land-grant institution.”
The school profiles in the guide also feature information for college applicants including facts and statistics on school demographics, admission and financial aid, as well as write-ups on each school’s sustainability initiatives. A “Green Facts” sidebar reports on a wide range of topics from the school’s use of renewable energy sources, recycling and conservation programs to the availability of environmental studies and career guidance for green jobs.
“We are pleased to recommend Auburn University to the many students seeking colleges that practice and promote environmentally-responsible choices and practices,” said Rob Franek, senior vice president and publisher, The Princeton Review.
Franek noted his company’s recent survey findings indicating significant interest among college applicants in attending “green” colleges.
“Among 10,116 college applicants who participated in our 2014 ‘College Hopes & Worries Survey,’ 61 percent said having information about a school’s commitment to the environment would influence their decision to apply to or attend the school,” he said.
Rachel Gutter, director of the Center for Green Schools at the U.S. Green Building Council, said “In collaborating with The Princeton Review on this annual guide, we have seen that sustainability on campuses continues to be an important deciding factor for today’s four-year college bound students. We are excited to once again provide prospective students and their parents with a resource to help them navigate this often daunting decision-making process.”
For information about sustainability at Auburn, go to www.auburn.edu/sustainability.
(Contributed by Carol Nelson.)