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Appalachian State University Named One of The Princeton Review’s Top 322 Green Colleges

April 26, 2013. Appalachian State University is one of 322 colleges and universities across the nation included in “The Princeton Review’s Guide to 322 Green Colleges” for 2013. The guide was created in collaboration with the Center for Green Schools at the U.S. Green Building Council (USGBC) (www.usgbc.org).

This is the fourth year the guidebook has been released, saluting the nation’s most environmentally responsible “green colleges.”

“Sixty-one percent of parents who use The Princeton Review look at sustainability as a key factor when helping their child choose where to go to school,” said Crystal Simmons from Appalachian’s Office of Sustainability. “Being featured in this review really shows that our university is committed to sustainability and is taking tremendous strides to educate our students on what it means to lead a ‘sustainable’ life.”

images-7The “green guide” profiles institutions that demonstrate notable commitments to sustainability in their academic offerings, campus infrastructure, activities and career preparation.

Robert Franek, senior vice president and publisher of The Princeton Review, noted that recent survey findings indicate that many college applicants are interested in attending “green” colleges. “Among 9,955 college applicants who participated in our 2013 ‘College Hopes & Worries Survey,’ 62 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. 

Schools were selected for inclusion in the guide based on responses to more than 50 questions about an institution’s sustainability-related policies, practices and programs. Scores were assigned each school on a scale ranging from 60 (lowest) to 99 (highest). Appalachian received a score of 98.

According to Jim Dees, data specialist for Appalachian’s Office of Sustainability, the university’s high ranking can be attributed to the following:

  • Student sustainability-centered research opportunities
  • Appalachian’s long-standing appropriate technology and sustainable development programs
  • The university’s willingness to “protect the environment through conscientious stewardship and assertive leadership in sustainable policies and practices”
  • 70 percent of departments offering courses that are sustainability-related or focused
  • Sixteen renewable energy installations, including the state’s largest operable wind turbine
  • Appalachian’s entry into the U.S. Department of Energy’s Solar Decathlon, The Solar Homestead, and winning the People’s Choice Award

“Sustainability comes first at Appalachian,” said Dees. “This ranking helps to show others across the nation just how engrained and important sustainability is to our campus.”

In addition to Appalachian, other N.C. schools included in the guide are Catawba College, Duke University, Elon University, Guilford College, N.C. State University, UNC Asheville, UNC Chapel Hill, Wake Forest University, Warren Wilson College and Western Carolina University.

To download the 2013 Princeton Review Guide to 322 Green Colleges, visit www.princetonreview.com/green-guide