SUNY New Paltz performed well on two major recent rankings of the most environmentally responsible colleges and universities, continuing a string of accolades recognizing sustainability efforts in and out of the classroom.
The College received high marks on both the Princeton Review’s Guide to Green Colleges and Sierra Magazine’s Cool Schools rankings this fall. Each list serves as a resource for prospective students, families and academic professionals who are passionate about eco-friendly practices at the institutions where they study, live and work.
The Princeton Review’s scoring system centers the student experience, assessing whether campus quality of life is healthy and sustainable, and whether the school is preparing students for environmentally focused careers and citizenship in the 21st century. The full methodology, including sample questions, can be found via this link.
Sierra Magazine’s rankings rely primarily on Sustainability Tracking, Assessment & Rating System (STARS) data, which colleges and universities self-submit to the Association for the Advancement of Sustainability in Higher Education (AASHE). STARS scores are derived from a rubric that assesses four broad categories – academics, engagement, operations and planning & administration – to measure commitment to environmental responsibility.
Even in a year defined by a pandemic, New Paltz has enjoyed a number of sustainability successes in 2020. Among others, the College has joined leaders around the world in embracing the Global Goals for Sustainable Development for purposes of strategic planning; saw the new Engineering Innovation Hub receive LEED Gold Certification for green construction; and once again earned Tree Campus USA honors for planting and protecting trees on campus, and incorporating them into students’ academic experiences.