The Student Involvement category looks at the level of student participation in sustainability initiatives and support for these activities from the college administration. This includes the existence of active student organizations that work toward expanding sustainability efforts within the campus, along with demonstrated support for these initiatives from the administration. Sustainability competitions, often coordinated by students, challenge community members to reduce water or electricity use, for instance, and help to engage the broader campus population by creating incentives for behavioral change.
This category also examines how sustainability policies and culture are integrated into orientation programs for new students. Another aspect of student involvement concerns opportunities for Eco-Reps and sustainability-related work-study jobs, as well as other paid student positions to promote sustainable practices.
- More than two in three schools have introduced sustainability into student orientation. A sustainability awareness/educational component has been integrated into an impressive 69 percent of new-student orientation programs for incoming students.
- Nearly two in five schools have student representation on their board of trustees. Thirty-eight percent of the schools include at least one student representative on their board of trustees.
- Close to half of all the schools have Eco-Reps or other similar programs to promote behavioral change on campus. Forty-two percent of the schools have instituted these programs to encourage sustainable living practices in residence halls.
- Two-thirds of the schools offer paid sustainability opportunities for students. Sixty-eight percent of the schools offer paid positions to students for work on sustainability activities within the facilities department, sustainability office, or other relevant campus office.
- More than two in five schools have a green residence. A green dorm that features green building best practices and/or a dedicated green residence for eco-minded students is offered by 42 percent of the schools.
- Almost three-quarters of the schools host a sustainability competition on campus. Seventy percent of the schools have sustainability competitions on at least an annual basis to promote one or more of the following: increased recycling, waste reduction, and energy or water conservation.
- The average grade for the Student Involvement category is “B-.” For a summary of grade distribution for this category, please refer to the chart on the right.
Leading by Example
Two-thirds of the schools offer paid sustainability opportunities for students.