The Center for Green Schools at the U.S. Green Building Council (USGBC) and Second Nature announced that Southern Oregon University (SOU) has won an Honorable Mention in the 2016 USGBC Climate Leadership Awards. SOU was a finalist in the competition last year. The new Honorable Mention award was given this year for the first time, and SOU and Huston-Tillotson University in Austin, TX were the recipients for four-year schools. Arizona State University was the top award winner in the category.
“This award is one more acknowledgement that SOU is a national leader in climate and sustainability innovation,” says the university’s sustainability and recycling coordinator, Roxane Beigel-Coryell. “I’m very proud to be part of a campus community that infuses environmental consciousness into not just academic studies, but also campus operations, and student programs.”
Forty colleges and universities competed for awards this year. “We are thrilled to recognize these institutions for their dedication to creating a sustainable higher education environment and incorporating green practices into their campuses and educational discourse,” said Jaime Van Mourik, director of higher education, USGBC.
SOU offers a Masters degree in Environmental Education, Bachelor’s degrees in Environmental Science & Policy and Outdoor Adventure Leadership, and a Sustainability Leadership Certificate, plus more than 148 sustainability-related academic courses. SOU is also the nation’s first “Bee Campus USA,” the first university in the nation to offset 100 percent of water use through the purchase of water restoration certificates, and is the home to Oregon’s first LEED Platinum-Certified building among the state’s public institutions of higher education.
SOU will be recognized as part of the 2016 USGBC Leadership Awards Luncheon at the Greenbuild International Conference & Expo on Thursday, October 6, in Los Angeles, Calif.