Lipscomb University featured in The Princeton Review’s 2013 green colleges guidebook

By Janel Shoun-Smith on 4/20/2013

  
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Princeton Green Guide 2013

Lipscomb University is one of the 322 most environmentally responsible colleges in the U.S. and Canada, according to The Princeton Review. The education services company known for its test prep programs and college rankings, ratings and guidebooks, profiles Lipscomb in the fourth annual edition of its free downloadable book, The Princeton Review’s Guide to 322 Green Colleges.

The Princeton green guide, published in partnership with the U.S. Green Building Council (USGBC)’s Center for Green Schools, is the only free, comprehensive guide that focuses solely on colleges that have demonstrated a strong commitment to the environment and to sustainability.

In the 2013 edition, Lipscomb is one of only five schools in Tennessee included in the guide. Published Tuesday, the 215-page guide can now be downloaded at www.princetonreview.com/green-guide and www.centerforgreenschools.org/greenguide.

The Princeton Review chose the schools for this guide based on a 50-question survey it conducted in 2012 of administrators at hundreds of four-year colleges. The company analyzed data from the survey about the schools’ course offerings, campus infrastructure, activities and career preparation to measure their commitment to the environment and to sustainability.

service day 09 4
Lipscomb Service Day's usually include work at Radnor State Natural area.
SENCER science class 2
Lipscomb classes have worked to help measure water quality in the Little Harpeth River.
Sustain Summit Plant
The annual Sustainable Business Summits even have sustainable centerpieces.

The 322 school profiles in the guide feature essential information for college applicants – facts and statistics on school demographics, admission, financial aid – plus write-ups on the schools’ specific sustainability initiatives. A “Green Facts” sidebar reports on a wide range of topics from the school's use of renewable energy sources, recycling and conservation programs to the availability of environmental studies and career guidance for green jobs.

In the guide’s Lipscomb profile, The Princeton Review highlights the school’s commitment to internal sustainability practices, to green education and to external efforts to promote sustainability.

"Tennessee is blessed to have five sustainability leaders out of roughly six percent of all the nation's universities," said Dodd Galbreath, executive director of Lipscomb's Institute for Sustainable Practice. "TherReview largely traced Lipscomb's unique contributions to the adoption of clean, ground sourced heating and cooling; educating the first, credentialed generation of sustainability professionals in the Southeast; and bringing together business leaders at five successive annual summits to hasten sustainability in Tennessee's economy."

Among Lipscomb’s green operations mentioned in the guide are:

  • Establishment of the Institute for Sustainable Practice;
  • Geothermal heating and cooling in all new building and renovation;
  • Parking for hybrid cars;
  • A green housekeeping program;
  • The first-of-its kind green MBA, undergraduate degree and sustainability minor;
  • The Career Development Center’s focus on sharing green professional opportunities with students; and
  • The annual sustainable business summits coordinated by the university.

According to The Princeton Review guide, Lipscomb spends 10 percent of its food budget on local or organic food, diverts 25 percent of its waste from landfills, fulfills 10 percent of its energy needs from renewable resources and 25 percent of its cleaning products are green-certified.

“We are truly pleased to recommend Lipscomb along with all of the fine schools in this book to the many students seeking colleges that practice and promote environmentally-responsible choices and practices,” said Robert Franek, senior VP/publisher of The Princeton Review.

Franek noted his company’s recent survey findings indicating significant interest among college applicants 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. 

Rachel Gutter, director of the Center for Green Schools at USGBC, commented, “Selecting a four-year college is a big choice. When we learned that the majority of prospective college students factor a school’s commitment to sustainability into their selection criteria, we wanted to ensure we were providing the best information. We’re thrilled to team up with The Princeton Review for the fourth year to offer a guide to help make our future college students’ choices a little easier.” 

The Princeton Review chose the schools based on a survey it conducted of hundreds of colleges across the U.S. and in Canada in 2012 to tally its “Green Ratings” (scores from 60 to 99) it reports in school profiles in its annual college guidebooks and website. The 322 schools in this guide received scores of 83 or above in that assessment.