Green Mountain College was recognized on October 25th as the nation’s top baccalaureate institution for sustainability by the Association for the Advancement of Sustainability in Higher Education (AASHE). AASHE also awarded Green Mountain College the #1 spot in sustainability-based curriculum.
Recognition by AASHE follows several other recent accolades GMC has received for social, environmental and economic sustainability. In August the College ranked among the nation’s top ten “Cool Schools” by Sierra magazine, the national magazine of the Sierra Club. Also in August, GMC was ranked the third greenest college in the country in The Princeton Review’s 2017 edition of The Best 381 Colleges.
AASHE’s 2016 Sustainable Campus Index recognizes top performing colleges and universities as measured by the Sustainability Tracking, Assessment & Rating System (STARS). STARS is a transparent, self-reporting framework for colleges and universities to measure their sustainability performance developed by AASHE. With nearly 800 participating institutions, it is the leading tool for measuring higher education sustainability performance.
“The institutions and initiatives featured in this year’s Sustainable Campus Index showcase the great work that higher education institutions are doing to lead the global sustainability transformation,” said AASHE’s Executive Director, Meghan Fay Zahniser. “I hope the contents of this report will inspire students, administrators, faculty and staff at colleges and universities to work together to implement innovative solutions to the challenges that we face today.”
“This report confirms that GMC continues to serve as a model for campus sustainability while equipping the next generation of students with the skills they need to lead and succeed in a world that is being transformed by climate change and social justice,” said Green Mountain College Sustainability Director Ryan Ihrke.
Green Mountain College is the most highly awarded college in the nation for sustainability. GMC uses sustainability as the organizing principle for its undergraduate and graduate program curricula and operations. It was the first college in the nation to achieve climate neutrality through campus-wide efficiency, adoption of clean energy, and purchase of local carbon offsets. In 2015, the College divested from the top 200 publicly traded coal, oil, and gas companies responsible for the largest amounts of potential carbon emissions in their reserves.
AASHE’s complete Sustainable Campus Index can be found here.