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US Department of Education Green Ribbon Schools


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Shanna Yetman
Communications Coordinator

 Loyola University Chicago Honored Among 2019 U.S. Department of Education Green Ribbon Schools

CHICAGO and WASHINGTON D.C., September 25, 2019- Loyola University Chicago was honored for its achievements in sustainability by the U.S. Department of Education at an awards ceremony in Washington D.C. Loyola, along with 53 other honorees were named a US Department of Education Green Ribbon School.

The Illinois Department of Education and the Illinois Green Alliance nominated Loyola University Chicago for the Postsecondary Sustainability Award. Loyola is a gold-rated university in the Association for the Advancement of Sustainability in Higher Education’s STARS program. As a Catholic, Jesuit, urban university, Loyola addresses climate through three main strategies: campus, curriculum, and community engagement. Loyola is now home to 11 LEED-certified buildings across three campuses, and it has more green roofs than any other university in the Midwest. Due to the urban nature of Loyola campuses, over 95 percent of students and 70 percent of employees take a sustainable transportation option while commuting, such as public transit, biking, or walking. Loyola offers over 1,300 courses that address sustainability, and the University’s School of Environmental Sustainability (SES) is creating solutions to the major issues of climate change and environmental justice by combining environmental science with policy, business, and public health. In March of 2020, SES will host its sixth climate change conference. Next year’s theme will be Accompanying Youth to a Hope-Filled Future.

“This year, Loyola was the only postsecondary school nominated in Illinois. National recognition of Loyola’s sustainability efforts is always appreciated,” says Loyola’s Director of Sustainability Aaron Durnbaugh. “An award like this lets us know that we are leading by example and that our efforts in sustainability have become ingrained in our social justice mission.”

At the event, 35 schools and 14 districts were honored for their innovative efforts to reduce environmental impact and costs, promote better health, and ensure effective environmental education. In addition, four colleges and universities, including Loyola, were honored with the Postsecondary Sustainability Award.  A state education official was also recognized for his efforts to advance school sustainability in the state of Minnesota.  Representatives from the selected institutions received sustainably crafted plaques in recognition of their achievements.

The honorees were named from a pool of candidates nominated by 28 states. The selectees include 25 public schools, including three magnet schools and two charter schools, as well as 10 nonpublic schools. Over a third of the 2019 honorees serve a disadvantaged student body.

About Loyola’s Institute of Environmental Sustainability
The Institute of Environmental Sustainability was founded in 2013 with the mission to engage students in understanding and responding to local and global environmental issues. SES delivers core environmental science degrees to Loyola University Chicago’s undergraduate students and prepares them for socially responsible professions in environmental science, policy, public health, and sustainable business practices. The SES aims to advance the knowledge of environmental problems and develop solutions through original research and community action, and an annual Climate Change Conference. To learn more about SES, visit LUC.edu/sustainability, “like” us at Facebook.com/LoyolaIES, or follow us on Twitter via @GreenLoyola.

About Loyola University Chicago
Founded in 1870, Loyola University Chicago is one of the nation’s largest Jesuit, Catholic universities, with more than 16,600 students. Nearly 11,500 undergraduates call Loyola home. The University has four campuses: three in the greater Chicago area and one in Rome, Italy, as well as a course location in Vernon Hills, Illinois (Cuneo Mansion and Gardens); and a Retreat and Ecology Campus in Woodstock, Illinois. The University features 14 schools, colleges, and institutes, including the Parkinson School of Health Sciences and Public Health, Quinlan School of Business, Marcella Niehoff School of Nursing, Stritch School of Medicine, College of Arts and Sciences, School of Communication, School of Continuing and Professional Studies, School of Education, School of Law, School of Social Work, Graduate School, Institute of Pastoral Studies, Institute of Environmental Sustainability, and Arrupe College of Loyola University Chicago. Ranked a top national university by U.S. News & World Report, Loyola is also among a select group of universities recognized for community service and engagement by prestigious national organizations like the Carnegie Foundation and the Corporation for National and Community Service. To learn more about Loyola, visit LUC.edu, “like” us at Facebook.com/LoyolaChicago, or follow us on Twitter via @LoyolaChicago or @LoyolaNewsroom.