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Ford Hall, an academic building that opened this fall, is one of two facilities at Willamette to be certified LEED Gold by the U.S. Green Building Council.Ford Hall, an academic building that opened this fall, is one of two facilities at Willamette to be certified LEED Gold by the U.S. Green Building Council.

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Princeton Review features Willamette University in green college guide

Willamette University is one of the country's most environmentally responsible colleges, according to The Princeton Review, which included the university in its new "Guide to 286 Green Colleges."

Developed by The Princeton Review in partnership with the U.S. Green Building Council, the guidebook showcases institutions of higher education that have demonstrated an above average commitment to sustainability in terms of campus infrastructure, activities and initiatives.

The feature adds to Willamette's national recognition for sustainability efforts. The National Wildlife Federation recently ranked Willamette first in the nation among colleges and universities for sustainability activities, and Willamette was named one of the top 20 "Cool Schools" in 2009 by Sierra Club's Sierra magazine.

The Princeton Review guide examines colleges' commitment to building certification using the Green Building Council's LEED certification program; environmental literacy programs; formal sustainability committees; use of renewable energy resources; recycling and conservation programs, and more.

Willamette has two LEED Gold-certified buildings - the Kaneko Commons residential facility and the Ford Hall academic building, which opened this fall - and has committed to making all future building projects meet LEED Silver standards or higher.

The university offers a degree in environmental science and sustainability-related courses throughout the undergraduate and graduate curriculum. Willamette University Forest at Zena, the university's research station located at a nearby sustainable forest, provides opportunities for hands-on learning and research for students from all disciplines.

Willamette also has a Sustainability Council made up of faculty, students and staff; and the Center for Sustainable Communities, which advances teaching and research in the area of sustainability through grants and events.

"By many accounts, there are going to be a lot of job opportunities related to the environment and sustainability," said Robert Franek, senior vice president and publisher of The Princeton Review. "For those who are interested in working in this growing sector, our guide highlights the schools that are doing an especially good job in preparing and placing the next generation of green professionals."

Read more about Willamette's sustainability programs at www.willamette.edu/about/sustainability. The free Princeton Review guide can be downloaded at www.princetonreview.com/greenguide and www.usgbc.org/campus.

04-20-2010