Sustaining our Efforts for Green Practices and Programs

The Princeton Review recognized The University of Scranton, and just 412 other colleges in the world, for expressing “strong commitments to green practices and programs” by inclusion in the 2019 edition of “The Princeton Review Guide to Green Colleges.” Most of the schools selected for the guide, which was published online in October, are in the U.S., with just 16 schools from Canada, one from Egypt and one from Greece also listed. This is the third consecutive year that Scranton has made this list.

The Princeton Review analyzed more than 25 data points to determine the final selection of colleges for the guide based on information from surveys of nearly 700 schools. The criteria broadly covered the schools’ academic offerings and initiatives, campus policies and practices, and green-career preparation for students. The colleges making the list “are standouts for their exemplary commitments to sustainability,” according to Rob Franek, The Princeton Review’s editor-in-chief.

According to Franek, college applicants and their parents are increasingly concerned about the environment and sustainability issues. He cited a solid majority (64%) of the 11,900 teens and parents that The Princeton Review polled for its 2019 College Hopes and Worries Survey as saying that having information about a college’s commitment to the environment would affect their decision to apply to or attend the school

Scranton’s long-established sustainability efforts include academics, facilities and community education and outreach. Scranton has infused issues of sustainability in courses across the curriculum, ranging from theology, to business, to the natural sciences, to education, as well as other disciplines. Scranton uses numerous “green” procedures in building maintenance practices, as well as in building design and construction. Scranton currently has three Leadership in Energy and Environmental Design (LEED) certified buildings: Leahy Hall, the Loyola Science Center and the DeNaples Center, which became the city’s first LEED certified structure in 2008. The University also conducts multiple community educational programs organized through its Office of Sustainability, which include a community garden, an Earth Day Essay Contest, an Earth Day Fair and an Evening of Environmental Science program for area children and families.

In addition, the Sustainability Office began a Work Study Program that engages work-study students in service-learning opportunities to help them grow in knowledge practical applications of sustainability concepts taught in their classes.

In addition to its “Guide to Green Colleges,” The Princeton Review has listed Scranton in its “Best Colleges” guidebooks for 18 consecutive years, also ranking Scranton in its 2020 edition among the nation’s “Best Science Lab Facilities” (No. 7), “Best Campus Food” (No. 10), and “Best-Run Colleges” (No. 20).

University of Scranton Science Center Ranked Among Best in the World

The University of Scranton’s Loyola Science Center was among “The 50 Most Impressive Environmentally Friendly University Buildings” in the world recognized by Best Masters Degrees, an education and career website for prospective graduate students.

The Loyola Science Center, ranked at No. 19, is listed with academic buildings in Seoul, South Korea, Thuwal, Saudi Arabia, and Beruit, Lebanon, as well as facilities from campuses across the United States.

According to the website, the buildings selected “reflect leadership in sustainability and also have significant visual impact.”

The 200,000-square-foot, $85 million Loyola Science Center, dedicated in the fall of 2012, is the largest capital project in University’s history. The facility, designed by Einhorn Yaffee Prescott Architecture & Engineering (EYP), earned Leadership in Energy and Environmental Design, or LEED, gold status certification in 2014.

Among the center’s many “green features” are energy-efficient lighting and controls, water conserving plumbing fixtures, high efficiency boilers and chillers, rain garden features, green house, observation deck and a computerized building control system that operates the ventilation, heating, and air conditioning systems. Materials for the center were supplied from within a 500-mile radius, including a blend of locally quarried West Mountain stone. All laboratories and spaces are designed to maximize energy efficiency. The building’s massive heating, ventilation and air-conditioning system employs a heat-exchange wheel to recirculate already conditioned heated or cooled air.

The building is visually recognizable for its synthesis of locally quarried stone with the extensive use of glass that admits natural light into laboratories and teaching spaces. The design makes use of high-efficiency glazing to reduce energy consumption, enhance visibility and views and puts science on grand display.

In October of 2018, The Princeton Review recognized Scranton among the most environmentally responsible colleges in the nation through its inclusion in the 2018 edition of “The Princeton Review Guide to 399 Green Colleges.”  In addition, The Princeton Review has listed Scranton in its “Best Colleges” guidebooks among the nation’s top 20 “Best Science Labs” for the past four consecutive years, ranking Scranton’s science labs at No. 16 in the country its 2019 edition.