UL Lafayette is one of just 11 post-secondary institutions — and the first and only one in Louisiana — to earn a pat on the back from the U.S. Department of Education for a campuswide commitment to sustainability.
The University was designated a 2016 Green Ribbon School. The honor singles out schools, from elementary to postsecondary, and school districts, that foster comprehensive sustainability programs and practices.
Green Ribbon Schools are recognized for “leadership in reducing environmental impact, improving health, and teaching environmental education,” according to the Department of Education. The program was established in 2011. It began recognizing colleges and universities in 2015.
Gretchen Vanicor, director of UL Lafayette’s Office of Sustainability, accepted the award for the University during a ceremony in Washington, D.C.
“To be selected in only the second year is an accomplishment that is indicative of the University’s longstanding commitment to environmental stewardship and sustainability practices,” she said.
The U.S. Department of Education commended UL Lafayette for a range of programs, practices, and initiatives, Vanicor said. They include campus recycling programs and tree preservation.
It cited the renovation and expansion of the Student Union, too. The project earned a silver rating from the U.S. Green Building Council’s Leadership in Energy and Environmental Design program. Several factors contribute to LEED certification, including types of construction materials used, energy efficiency and recycling.
Learn more about UL Lafayette sustainability and recycling at sustainability.louisiana.edu.
This article originally appeared in the Fall 2016/Winter 2017 issue of La Louisiane.