University of the Pacific's Stockton campus was listed among the top 50 "Cool Schools" by the Sierra Club this month. It was the third time that Pacific has been listed, but this year is the highest ranking ever for the University.
Pacific Ranked Among top 50 “Coolest Schools”Sierra Club’s annual ranking lists Pacific 26 places higher than last year
For the second year in a row, the Sierra Club - recognized as the country's largest and one of the most influential environmental organizations - named University of the Pacific's Stockton Campus among its top 100 "Coolest Schools." Pacific was listed at #42, a significant jump from last year's ranking of #68 among schools that address climate change and make efforts to become more sustainable.
The newest rankings were released earlier this month. This is the sixth time that the Sierra Club ranked educational institutions. The rankings appear in its most recent issue. The organization based its rankings on environmental practices, green initiatives and quality of sustainability-oriented education at colleges and universities.
"We are proud that all of our hard work during the past few years was recognized by the nation's leading environmental steward," said Shanna Eller, Pacific's Sustainability Director. "Pacific was first listed by the Sierra club two years ago at #117, and since then, we have opened several buildings that meet LEED-certified standards and instituted a large number of programs and initiatives that promote sustainability at all levels of the University."
The LEED Green Building Rating System is a third-party certification program and the nationally accepted benchmark for the design, construction and operation of high-performance green buildings. The program was developed by the U.S. Green Building Council (USGBC). Certificate levels are certified, silver, gold and platinum. The Don and Karen DeRosa University Center, Chambers Technology Center and Verschagin Alumni House are all LEED certified. In addition, several other buildings have been upgraded to meet LEED standards.
Pacific's sustainability efforts involve a number of programs and projects, including installing high-efficiency lighting and other power-saving devices, using non-potable water for roughly 80 percent of the irrigation on the Stockton campus, using 100% green cleaning products on the Stockton campus, converting a large number of electric carts to solar, and introducing sustainability in orientation and first year programs, including the MOVE program for all freshmen.
The Stockton campus isn't the only Pacific location that is making a sustainability effort. The Arthur A. Dugoni School of Dentistry offers office a supply exchange program. Additionally, the new building purchased in San Francisco to house that school and other Pacific programs will be remodeled to meet LEED standards. In Sacramento, the Pacific McGeorge School of Law maintains a community garden on its campus. The school also offers a "meatless Monday" in its cafeteria to reduce carbon impact. The Stockton campus will plant its community garden in October.
For more information about Pacific's commitment to sustainability, visit http://www.pacific.edu/About-Pacific/Sustaining-Pacific/Commitment-to-Sustainability.html.
To see the full Sierra Club listing of schools, visit http://www.sierraclub.org/sierra/201209/coolschools/complete-rankings-cool-schools.aspx.