The Princeton Review and the U.S. Green Building Council recognized Linfield College’s commitment to sustainability in their recently released guide to green colleges.The guide profiled the top 286 schools out of 2,000 invited to participate in their sustainability survey.
There is a growing interest among students to enroll at schools where there is a demonstrated commitment to sustainability, according to the Review.
The publication noted Linfield’s contribution to mitigation of global warming in the Pacific Northwest region through campus and community initiatives and activities.
Linfield has reduced its carbon footprint through green building standards and implementation of energy conservation projects across campus. Buildings have been retrofitted for energy efficiency and all major capital projects are required to meet LEED Silver standards. The school was among the first colleges in the Pacific Northwest to partner with U Car Share, a car sharing program that reduces the number of personal vehicles on the road and provides low-emission compact and hybrid cars for participants.
Greenfield, the student-initiated organization, focuses its efforts on awareness and mitigation of climate change. One hundred students walked door to door in the community, offering free energy efficient compact fluorescents in exchange for incandescent light bulbs as part of a collaboration with McMinnville Water & Light. For every bulb replaced, students earned a $2 energy credit to be applied toward solar panels on campus.
Students also spearheaded Power Shift Linfield, a conference dedicated to giving students the tools and skills to address climate change. They promote alternative transportation through a student-managed bike shop that loans bikes to the campus community free of charge. Students also partner with faculty on research projects dedicated to sustainability and serve on the campus Advisory Committee on the Environment and Sustainability.
“Sustainability doesn’t have to mean making huge lifestyle changes,” said Linfield senior Duncan Reid. “Taking small steps can lead to big results. Sustainability is being aware of your surroundings, being intentional about your actions and being aware of their consequences.”
Linfield students were also recognized this year in the National Wildlife Federation’s report, Generation E: Students leading for a sustainable, clean energy future. The report highlighted 165 campuses in 46 states.