Thursday, August 23, 2012

Princeton Review 2013 Green Honor Roll Ranking of US Colleges

In this years Princeton Honor Roll, 21 colleges earned the highest score (99). The Princeton Review's fifth annual "Green Ratings" of colleges is a measure of how environmentally friendly the institutions are on a scale of 60 to 99. The Company tallied the rating for 806 institutions based on its institutional surveys of colleges in 2011-12 concerning their environmentally related practices, policies and academic offerings.

The "Green Rating" scores appear in the Princeton Review profiles of the colleges on and in the new 2013 editions of two Princeton Review guidebooks published by Random House, Inc: "The Complete Book of Colleges" published August 7, and "The Best 377 Colleges" which went on sale August 21 in a print edition and a new enhanced eBook edition.

Here is an alphabetical listing of the twenty-one top ranked colleges that earned a place on the "2013 Green Rating Honor Roll." The list, which appears on and in "The Best 377 Colleges" includes:

American University (Washington DC)
Arizona State University (Tempe)
California Institute of Technology (Pasadena)
California State University, Chico*
Catawba College (Salisbury, NC)
Chatham University* (Pittsburgh, PA)
College of the Atlantic (Bar Harbor, ME)
Columbia University (New York, NY)
Georgia Institute of Technology (Atlanta)
Goucher College (Baltimore, MD)
Green Mountain College (Poultney, VT)
Harvard College (Cambridge, MA)
Northeastern University (Boston, MA)
San Francisco State University* (San Francisco, CA)
University of California – Santa Cruz
University of South Carolina – Columbia
University of Washington (Seattle) University of Wisconsin – Oshkosh*
University of Wisconsin – Stevens Point*
Vanderbilt University (Nashville, TN)
Warren Wilson College (Asheville NC)

*Schools with an asterisk are not profiled in "The Best 377 Colleges," but they are profiled in The Princeton Review's "The Complete Book of Colleges" and/or its website.

Robert Franek, Princeton Review Senior VP / Publisher noted the rising interest among students in attending "green" colleges. Among 7,445 college applicants Princeton Review surveyed in 2012 for its "College Hopes & Worries Survey," 68% said having information about a college's commitment to the environment would impact their decision to apply to or attend a school.

Criteria for Princeton Review's Green Rating cover three areas: 1/ whether the school's students have a campus quality of life that is healthy and sustainable, 2/ how well the school is preparing its students for employment and citizenship in a world defined by environmental challenges, and 3/ the school's overall commitment to environmental issues.

The institutional survey for the rating included questions on energy use, recycling, food, buildings, and transportation as well as academic offerings and action plans for reducing greenhouse gas emissions. (See list below.) The Princeton Review developed its Green Rating with ecoAmerica (, a non-profit environmental organization, in 2007-08.

The Princeton Review dedicated a resource area on its site for students interested in attending a green college. There, users can also download "The Princeton Review's Guide to 322 Green Colleges: 2012 Edition" – the only free, comprehensive guidebook to the nation's most environmentally responsible colleges. The 230-page guide is a project The Princeton Review has done for three years in partnership with the U.S. Green Building Council ( Published April 20, 2012, it has profiles of schools that received scores of 83 or higher in the Company's 2012 tallies for its Green Ratings. The guide can be downloaded at or at

Criteria for The Princeton Review's "Green Rating"

The Princeton Review tallied the "Green Rating "scores based on data it obtained in 2011-2012 from the colleges in response to an institutional survey. The survey included questions asking the schools to report:

1) The percentage of food expenditures that goes toward local, organic or otherwise environmentally preferable food 2) Whether the school offers programs including free bus passes, universal access transit passes, bike sharing/renting, car sharing, carpool parking, vanpooling or guaranteed rides home to encourage alternatives to single-passenger automobile use for students 3) Whether the school has a formal committee with participation from students that is devoted to advancing sustainability on campus 4) Whether new buildings are required to be LEED (environmental certification of equipment/appliances) Silver certified or comparable 5) The school's overall waste diversion rate 6) Whether the school has an environmental studies major, minor or concentration 7) Whether the school has an environmental literacy requirement for all of its graduates 8) Whether the school has produced a publicly available greenhouse gas emissions inventory and adopted a climate action plan consistent with 80 percent greenhouse gas reductions by 2050 targets 9) What percentage of the school's energy consumption is derived from renewable resources 10) Whether the school employs a dedicated full-time sustainability officer.  

About The Princeton Review College Ratings and College Rankings

The Princeton Review college ratings are scores on a scale of 60 to 99 that the Company annually tallies for hundreds of colleges in eight categories including Academics, Admissions Selectivity, Financial Aid, Fire Safety, and Green. The scores appear on college profiles on its site and in its college guidebooks. The ratings are based primarily on institutional data.

The Princeton Review college rankings are lists of schools in 62 categories (in rank order: 1 to 20) based entirely on the Company's surveys of 122,000 students attending the schools in its book, "The Best 377 Colleges." The survey asks students to rate their own schools on dozens of topics and report on their campus experiences at them. About The Princeton Review

Founded in 1981, The Princeton Review is a privately held education services company headquartered in Framingham, MA. The Company has long been a leader in helping college and graduate school–bound students achieve their education and career goals through its test preparation services, tutoring and admissions resources, online courses, and more than 150 print and digital books published by Random House, Inc. The Princeton Review delivers its programs via a network of more than 5,000 teachers and tutors in the U.S.A., Canada, and international franchises. The Company also partners with schools and guidance counselors worldwide to provide students with college readiness, test preparation and career planning services. The Princeton Review is not a magazine, and the Company is not affiliated with Princeton University.

For more information go to the Priceton Review Website

To see the Princeton Review Guide to Green Colleges click here.

To see the full list of schools click here.

To see the full list of schools by state click here

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