UNI ranked third most affordable eco-friendly college in US, ISU 12th


The Campanile is a major landmark on the University of Northern Iowa campus. (Wikimedia)
The Campanile is a major landmark on the University of Northern Iowa campus. (Wikimedia)

Nick Fetty | October 31, 2014

The University of Northern Iowa is the third most affordable eco-friendly college in country while Iowa State University took the number 12 spot according to BestChoiceSchools.com.

Efforts to save energy at UNI helped it to take the third place ranking. UNI’s Multi-Modal Transportation Center utilizes 960 photovoltaic (PV) panels. These solar panels generate enough energy to power between 75 and 100 average homes. The on-campus organization CARE (Creating a Responsible Environment) promotes sustainability through various campus initiatives such as composting. UNI also has a Sustainable Action Committee (SAC) which is “charged with identifying, considering, and recommending strategies that will enhance environmental awareness and energy conservation efforts on campus.” In 2013 UNI received gold-level status from the Sustainability Tracking, Assessment & Rating System (STARS). Tuition at UNI is $15,232 per year.

Iowa State also achieved gold-level status from STARS in 2013, through efforts such as recycling its old marching band uniforms and turning them into merchandise such as tote bags and iPod cases. The state’s largest public university also requires that construction and major renovations projects be designed to achieve LEED Gold certification. There are also several student environmental groups on campus including the Solar Decathlon team, The GreenHouse Group, and Keep Iowa State Beautiful. Tuition at the Ames university is $19,281 each year.

UNI and ISU were the only two Iowa schools to make the list. Berea College in Berea, Kentucky took the top spot with a tuition rate of $6,900 per year.

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