According to The Princeton Review, the institutions profiled in the guide "demonstrate notable commitments to sustainability in their academic offerings, campus infrastructure, activities and career preparation." The publication selected schools based on the "Green Rating" scores calculated from a 50-question survey conducted among 768 schools in the U.S. and Canada.
According to the 2012 “College Hopes and Worries Survey,” conducted by The Princeton Review, 68 percent of college-bound students indicated that information about a school’s commitment to the environment would influence their decision to apply to or attend the school.
Campus sustainability is more than a buzzword at Western. In the last decade, Western stepped up its commitment to environmental sustainability with several initiatives. In 2005, former President Jay Helman signed an Environmental Charter recognizing Western’s responsibility to improve environmental awareness, stewardship of natural resources and resource efficiency. Helman followed this by signing the President’s Climate Commitment, which commits Western to become a “carbon neutral” campus.
Students have played a pivotal role in leading sustainability initiatives on campus. Student-initiated projects include an earth tub for composting waste from the campus cafeteria, a student sustainability grant to fund campus projects and the recently approved optional student fee for renewable energy. Western also offers a variety of educational opportunities in environmental stewardship through its Center for Environmental Studies and the Institute for Applied Sustainability.
"The Princeton Review's Guide to 322 Green Colleges: 2012 Edition" can be downloaded for free at www.princetonreview.com/green-guide. For more information about Western's sustainability efforts, visit www.western.edu/sustainability.