The Princeton Review's Guide to Green Colleges: 2019 Edition Is Now Online

College of the Atlantic Is #1 on Top 50 Green Colleges List


NEW YORK, October 22, 2019    — The Princeton Review® today released its tenth annual  Guide to Green Colleges, a free resource that the education service company has created since 2010 for environmentally aware college applicants.

Accessible at www.princetonreview.com/green-guide, The Princeton Review Guide to Green Colleges: 2019 Edition profiles 413 colleges the company chose out of nearly 700 schools it surveyed in 2018–19 with strong commitments to green practices and programs. Most of the schools that made the guide are in the U.S. Sixteen are in Canada. One is in Egypt, and one is in Greece.

The Princeton Review editors analyzed more than 25 data points for the final selection of schools for the guide and a ranking list of the top 50 green colleges in it. The criteria for each broadly covered the schools' academic offerings and initiatives, campus policies and practices, and green-career preparation for students.

"These schools are standouts for their exemplary commitments to sustainability," said Rob Franek, The Princeton Review’s Editor-in-Chief. "With initiatives ranging from solar-powered residence halls and tray-less dining halls to robust offerings in environmental studies, they are, each in their own ways, outstanding institutions for students seeking to study and live at a green college. We recommend these schools highly and we are especially pleased to salute them during National Campus Sustainability Month."

Franek cited findings of a survey by The Princeton Review indicating a high level of interest among college applicants and their parents about environmental and sustainability issues. This year, a solid majority (64%) of the 11,900 teens and parents that the company polled for its 2019 College Hopes & Worries Survey said that having information about a college's commitment to the environment would affect their decision to apply to or attend the school. That survey report is downloadable at www.princetonreview.com/college-hopes-worries.

The College of the Atlantic in Bar Harbor, ME, earned the #1 spot on the guide's Top 50 Green Colleges ranking list for the fourth consecutive year. Established in 1969, College of the Atlantic was the first college in the U.S. specifically founded to focus on the relationship between humans and the environment. In 2007, it became the first carbon-neutral college in the U.S. It has since committed to becoming a fossil fuel-free campus by 2030.

The top 15 schools on The Princeton Review's “Top 50 Green Colleges” ranking list for 2019 are:

  1. College of the Atlantic (ME)
  2. State University of New York—College of Environmental Science and Forestry
  3. Dickinson College (PA)
  4. University of Vermont
  5. St. Mary's College of Maryland
  6. Chatham University (PA)
  7. Bowdoin College (ME)
  8. Colby College (ME)
  9. Colorado State University
  10. Stanford University (CA)
  11. American University (DC)
  12. Virginia Tech University
  13. Agnes Scott College (GA)
  14. University of California—Berkeley
  15. Bates College (ME)

Some remarkable statistics about the commitment to sustainability among the 50 schools on the list are:

  • 22% of their total food purchases are from local sources and/or organic
  • 50% of their waste is diverted from incinerators or solid-waste landfills
  • 98% offer a sustainability-focused undergraduate major or degree
  • 100% have a sustainability officer

School profiles in The Princeton Review Guide to Green Colleges provide detailed information on each school's use of renewable energy, recycling and conservation programs, availability of environmental studies, and career guidance for green jobs. The profiles also provide information on admission requirements, cost, financial aid, and student body facts and stats.

How Schools Were Chosen for the Guide

The Princeton Review chose the colleges based on Green Rating scores the company tallied (on a scale of 60 to 99) for 689 colleges in summer 2019 using data from its 2018–19 survey of administrators at the colleges. The survey asked administrators to report on their schools’ sustainability-related policies, practices, and programs. More than 25 data points were analyzed for the Green Rating score. Colleges with Green Rating scores of 80 or higher made it into this guide. The Green Rating scores appear in the profiles of the schools on www.princetonreview.com and in the 2020 editions of The Princeton Review books, The Complete Book of Colleges and The Best 385 Colleges (published in summer 2019). More information about The Princeton Review's Green Rating and its Green Honor Roll (a list of schools that received the highest possible rating score, 99) is at www.princetonreview.com/green-guide.

How The Top 50 Green Colleges List Was Tallied

The Princeton Review tallied this ranking list based on data from its institutional survey of administrators at the colleges for its Green Rating and its surveys of students attending the colleges. Ten data points from the institutional survey were factored into the assessment. Data from the student survey included student ratings of three factors: the influence of sustainability issues on their education and life on campus; administration and student support for environmental awareness and conservation efforts; and the visibility and impact of student environmental groups.

The Princeton Review is also known for dozens of other categories of its college rankings reported in its annual books, The Best 385 Colleges and The Best Value Colleges, and on its website. The company's college rankings are all accessible for free with registration at www.princetonreview.com.

About The Princeton Review

The Princeton Review is a leading tutoring, test prep, and college admission services company. Every year, it helps millions of college- and graduate school–bound students achieve their education and career goals through online and in-person courses delivered by a network of more than 4,000 teachers and tutors, online resources, and its more than 150 print and digital books published by Penguin Random House. Its Tutor.com brand is the largest online tutoring service in the U.S. It comprises a community of thousands of tutors who have delivered more than 17.5 million one-to-one tutoring sessions. The Princeton Review is headquartered in New York, NY. The Princeton Review is not affiliated with Princeton University. For more information, visit PrincetonReview.com. Follow the company on Twitter @ThePrincetonRev and Instagram @theprincetonreview.

      Note to Editors

      The Princeton Review's Rob Franek, Editor-in-Chief, and David Soto, Director of Content Development, are available for interviews about this project and the schools in the guide. Contact Jeanne Krier, Director of Publicity for The Princeton Review, at pressoffice@review.com, or Suzanne Podhurst, Director of Communication and Social Media, at Suzanne.Podhurst@review.com.

      Lists of the 413 colleges in the guide are accessible on The Princeton Review website two ways: