NEW YORK, April 20 /PRNewswire-FirstCall/ -- In an effort to recognize the impressive environmental and sustainability programs at universities and colleges across the country, The Princeton Review, in partnership with the U.S. Green Building Council (USGBC), today announced the release of "The Princeton Review's Guide to 286 Green Colleges" – the first, free comprehensive Guidebook solely focused on institutions of higher education who have demonstrated an above average commitment to sustainability in terms of campus infrastructure, activities and initiatives.
Just in time for the 40th Anniversary of Earth Day (April 22nd), the Guide – which is based on a survey of hundreds of colleges nationwide – profiles the nation's most environmentally-responsible campuses. From solar panel study rooms to the percentage of budget spent on local/organic food, "The Princeton Review's Guide to 286 Green Colleges" looks at an institution's commitment to building certification using USGBC's LEED green building certification program; environmental literacy programs; formal sustainability committees; use of renewable energy resources; recycling and conservation programs, and much more.
"Our research has shown that students and their parents are becoming more and more interested in learning about and attending universities and colleges that practice, teach and support environmental responsibility," said Robert Franek, senior vice president and publisher, The Princeton Review. "In fact, 64 percent of the nearly 12,000 college applicants and parents who participated in our recent College Hopes & Worries Survey said having information about a school's commitment to the environment would impact their decision to apply to or attend it. We created this Guide to help them evaluate how institutions focus on environmental responsibility so they can make informed decisions as they move through the college assessment and application process."
"Beyond the cost savings to an institution, even the simplest aspects of a green campus, such as increased use of natural light, have been found to improve student learning and quality of life," said Rick Fedrizzi, president, CEO and founding chair, USGBC. "Green facilities make colleges more attractive to students and can dramatically reduce energy costs. Higher education is a top priority market segment for USGBC because graduates of green colleges become incredible drivers of change when they call for similar surroundings in their jobs and communities."
The Princeton Review noted that another unique aspect of the Guide is that it provides important information on schools that have dedicated environmental studies curriculums. "By many accounts, there are going to be a lot of job opportunities related to the environment and sustainability," commented Franek. "For those who are interested in working in this growing sector, the Guide highlights the schools that are doing an especially good job in preparing and placing the next generation of green professionals."
How the Schools Were Chosen
The Princeton Review chose the 286 schools included in the Guide based on the "Green Rating" scores the schools received in summer 2009 when The Princeton Review published Green Rating scores for 697 schools in its online college profiles and/or annual college guidebooks. The Princeton Review's "Green Rating" is a numerical score from 60 – 99 that's based on several data points. In 2008, The Princeton Review began collaborating with USGBC to help make the Green Rating survey questions as comprehensive and inclusive as possible. Of 697 schools that The Princeton Review gave "Green Ratings" to in 2009, the 286 schools in the Guide received scores in the 80th or higher percentile. The Princeton Review does not rank the schools in this book hierarchically (1 to 286) or in any of its books based on their "Green Rating" scores.
The Princeton Review debuted its "Green Rating" scores for colleges and universities in 2008 and annually reports them for more than 700 institutions it profiles in its "Best Colleges" book, "Best Northeastern Colleges" book, "Complete Book of Colleges," and on its website profiles of colleges. The company also annually names schools to its "Green Honor Roll" which salutes the institutions receiving the highest possible Green Rating score (99) in the year's tallies. Profiles in The Princeton Review's annual "Guide to College Majors" highlight 100 majors for green careers. Information about The Princeton Review's Green Rating, Green Honor Roll, and advice for students seeking green careers is at http://www.princetonreview.com/green.aspx.
For more information on USGBC and using LEED as a roadmap for greening colleges and universities, visit http://www.usgbc.org/campus.
About The Princeton Review
The Princeton Review (Nasdaq: REVU) has been a pioneer and leader in helping students achieve their higher education goals for more than 28 years through college and graduate school test preparation and private tutoring. With more than 165 print and digital publications and a free website, www.PrincetonReview.com, the Company provides students and their parents with the resources to research, apply to, prepare for, and learn how to pay for higher education. The Princeton Review partners with schools and guidance counselors throughout the U.S. to assist in college readiness, test preparation and career planning services, helping more students pursue postsecondary education. The Company also owns and operates Penn Foster Education Group, a global leader in online education. Penn Foster provides career-focused degree and vocational programs in the fields of allied health, business, technology, education, and select trades through the Penn Foster High School and Penn Foster Career School (www.pennfoster.edu), which are headquartered in Scranton, PA.
About the U.S. Green Building Council
The Washington, D.C.-based U.S. Green Building Council is committed to a prosperous and sustainable future for our nation through cost-efficient and energy-saving green buildings. With a community comprising 80 local affiliates, more than 18,500 member companies and organizations, and more than 155,000 LEED Professional Credential holders, USGBC is the driving force of an industry that is projected to contribute $554 billion in U.S. gross domestic product from 2009 – 2013. USGBC leads a diverse constituency of builders and environmentalists, corporations and nonprofit organizations, elected officials and concerned citizens, teachers and students. Building in the United States are responsible for 39 percent of CO2 emissions, 40 percent of energy consumption, 13 percent of water consumption and 15 percent of GDP per year, making green building a source of significant economic and environmental opportunity. Greater building efficiency can meet 85 percent of future U.S. demand for energy, and a national commitment to green buildings has the potential to generate 2.5 million jobs in America.
SOURCE The Princeton Review