Slippery Rock University was listed as a “Cool School” by the Sierra Club, one of the nation’s largest grassroots environmental organization.
SRU ranked 116 out of the 201 colleges and universities on the list and was the only school to rank from the Pennsylvania State School System.
The ranking is based on a score achieved by the university. The score is made up of points given for sustainability programs and initiatives in place by the university, such as offering a student sustainability outreach campaign, having outdoor programs and energy use.
Paul Scanlon, director of sustainability, said that the office of sustainability coordinates with all committees, document reports on sustainability efforts use resources to achieve carbon neutrality by 2037. The previous SRU president signed off on a climate commitment plan which since then has been an initiative continually worked on by the university. The university is also a member of the Association for the Advancement of Sustainability in Higher Education.
Current sustainability features that SRU offers is roofs that decrease runoff, the “Harnessing Human Energy” project which converts 13 machines at the ARC to produce electricity and wind-powered lake aeration system to inhibits growth of harmful algae.
“We’re doing a lot to reduce our carbon footprints on campus,” Scanlon said.
Although the university itself has new technology and methods to make it more green, Scanlon said that the education aspect of sustainability is far more important.
“I think our real goal is to make sure that everybody who graduates has some background in sustainability and climate change so they can carry that forward to their future families and businesses,” Scanlon said. “It’s important we start graduating students who will take action in the future.”