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Report Card 2011

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Student Involvement

This list of Student Involvement Leaders is comprised of the schools that earned "A" grades in this category. Below is a list of 10 very different institutions that all qualified for the list. These summaries are based on data from each school's profile page.


The Honors House at the  University of Alaska-Fairbanks is being renovated according to student-drawn plans incorporating green building features. Sustainability is covered in presentations at new student orientation, and the university employs 12 paid sustainability interns. In 2009, students voted to create a $20 green fee. A board composed of students and faculty was recently created to decide which projects the fee should fund. The Sustainable Campus Task Force student group seeks to further the understanding of low-impact living at UAF and has worked on projects ranging from biodiesel conversions to bicycle initiatives.


Students residing in Columbia University ’s GreenBorough House experiment with sustainable living. Student groups have worked on developing a green purchasing policy, an energy-saving competition, the distribution of efficient lightbulbs, and a community garden, among other initiatives. Eco-reps host events to raise awareness and improve the environmental habits of their peers.


Environmental student groups at  Hendrix College have worked on a variety of initiatives, including advocating for a sustainability coordinator, climate legislation, and increased bicycle use, as well as hosting film screenings, bringing speakers to campus, sponsoring dorm energy competitions, and facilitating tours of a local recycling facility. The Environmental Concerns Committee of the student senate works closely with the Sustainability Committee to implement campus programs.


Indiana University  students may live in the Sustainability Issues Thematic Community, and the university employs 18 sustainability interns and 11 eco-reps. Environmental student groups have worked on a variety of initiatives, including promoting self-sufficiency through gardening, reducing consumption and waste, composting, environmental career development, and promoting eco-friendly landscaping. A conservation competition resulted in 2,530,958 gallons of water savings and an 800-ton carbon emissions reduction.


New student orientation at  John Hopkins University is paperless, and the university employs five sustainability interns. The Green Idea Generator, held annually since 2007, gives students an opportunity to propose potential sustainability projects to be implemented on campus. Students for Environmental Action promotes environmental awareness and maintains a campus community garden. Engineers for a Sustainable World works on recycling and biodiesel projects on campus.


In 2008, the  University of New Brunswick launched a carbon neutral orientation week, during which all students receive paperless orientation kits and a reusable water bottle. The Residence Energy Conservation Challenge has led to reductions in energy use across campus. The Student Union Green Committee works with the administration to develop sustainability-focused programming for students.


The  University of South Florida employs eight student sustainability interns. In addition, the Green Living Learning Community, which began in 2009, gives 25 students the opportunity to enhance sustainability programming and encourage student participation in campus initiatives. New students receive information from the sustainability office at orientation.


The GreenHouse at  Sewanee is home to 12 students who commit to maintaining sustainable lifestyles. New students learn about campus environmental efforts through skits, resident assistant presentations, and hands-on activities at orientation. The school employs several student sustainability interns and eco-reps. Students participate in the Eco Cup each year to reduce energy consumption, and several student organizations spearhead sustainability efforts on campus.


At the University of Wisconsin-Madison , more than 20 student groups are involved in on- and off-campus sustainability initiatives. New student orientation features presentations on sustainability and a zero-waste meal, and all new students receive reusable bags and water bottles. The university sponsors 15 paid and 100 volunteer sustainability internships.


Numerous student groups are involved with the  Yale University  Student Environmental Coalition, which recently organized a regional environmental conference, increased awareness of waste and energy reduction initiatives, and advocated for a ban on bottled water. The university employs 22 sustainability interns and 30 students in a residential environmental representative program. Yale Harvest offers a sustainable agriculture orientation to first-year students.


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