OSU Recognized as One of America’s Top 25 ‘Green Colleges’ and Universities


CORVALLIS, Ore. – Oregon State University’s leadership in environmentally responsible practices has earned it a spot in the Kaplan College Guide 2009’s list of America’s top 25 “green colleges,” officials with the popular annual publication have announced.

Kaplan editors reviewed a range of criteria to create the list including environmentally responsible campus projects; initiatives and courses offered; organizations and student groups on campus; and achievements noted in the Sustainable Endowments Institute’s College Sustainability Report Card 2008. The list highlights schools whose efforts reflect a commitment to long-term sustainability and to encouraging students to make better choices.

OSU is the only Oregon university on the list. The University of Washington is the only other institution included from the Pacific Northwest.

Accompanying the list was the guide’s look at “10 Hot Green Careers,” which included solar energy engineering, hydrology, organic agriculture and others that are particular academic strengths of OSU.

“Our guide is designed to help students get into schools and prepare for careers that will enable them to make a meaningful and positive impact on our planet,” said Jason Palmer, contributing editor to the Kaplan College Guide 2009. “We’re offering objective information to students who want to be better global citizens – not just today, but throughout their lives.”

This is the latest in a growing number of prominent recognitions OSU has earned for its environmental efforts. The U.S. Environmental Protection Agency earlier this year ranked OSU one of the nation’s top five higher education users of “green power” and the best in the Pac 10.

Last fall, the Sustainable Endowment Institute’s College Sustainability Report Card listed OSU as among the nation’s top 25 campuses.

OSU President Ed Ray drew attention to the university’s commitment in environmentally friendly practices when he became one of the first to sign the American College and University Presidents Climate Commitment pledge last year. OSU students buttressed that commitment with an overwhelming approval last May of a student fee that allows OSU to purchase “green” power and potentially offset 100 percent of the carbon impact generated by electrical use.

“We’re committed to making OSU a model for green practices and sustainability efforts,” said Brandon Trelstad, OSU’s sustainability coordinator. “We know that students are increasingly aware of environmental concerns and want to support institutions that act responsibly in this area, so we’re delighted that the Kaplan College Guide has recognized us in this way.”

The KaplanCollege Guide 2009 went on sale this month and is available at neighborhood and online book sellers nationwide.