Dr. Nadine Garner pictured at the Center for Sustainability’s organic garden located behind Huntingdon House

For the fifth year in a row, Millersville University (MU) is deemed one of the most environmentally friendly colleges in the U.S., according to an October report in The Princeton Review Guide.

The education services company tallied scores based on institutional data from nearly 700 colleges and universities. Data included whether a campus has a quality of life that is both healthy and sustainable, how well a school is preparing students for employment in the clean-energy economy and how environmentally responsible school policies are, among other data.

The schools then received a grade on a scale of 60-99. Any school that scored above 80 was recognized as a green college. Millersville received a score of 87.

“We are honored to once again be ranked among the greenest colleges in the U.S.,” said Chris Steuer, Millersville’s sustainability director. “We are continuously working to improve our sustainability performance here at Millersville and this ranking is confirmation that we’re on the right track.”

Some of the ‘Ville’s most noteworthy parts of campus is what helped land it in the report. The pond, for example, is more than a hangout spot for swans Miller and S’Ville. It is a Certified Wildlife Habitat. The University completed other sustainability measures such as updating the University’s Climate Action Plan, establishing a campus apiary and maintaining organic vegetable gardens.

The Princeton Review Guide noted that more sweeping initiatives also landed Millersville on its list. The University has reduced its carbon footprint by more than 15 percent and previously tied its annual performance funding to that goal.

The Lombardo Welcome Center is the first building in Pennsylvania to be certified as a zero energy building by the International Living Future Institute and is only one of about 100 zero-energy buildings in the country. The unique building produces its own energy onsite through renewable energy sources.

How “green” colleges are matters to applicants and their parents, according to the 2019 College Hopes and Worries Survey Report. A majority of respondents to the survey (64%) said having information about a school’s commitment to environmental issues would contribute to their application decisions, with 23% indicating it would contribute strongly.

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