UofL ranked Coolest in the Commonwealth by Sierra Club

Cool Schools 2020Sierra magazine has again ranked UofL in the Top 100 “Coolest Schools” (out of a record large pool of 312 colleges & universities surveyed this year) with a score of 65.79 in the 2020 Cool Schools rankings.

In this year's rankings, the University of Louisville also maintained its esteemed status as the Coolest in the Commonwealth! Four other Kentucky schools made the 2020 list:

  • Berea College ranked #127 (63.69 pts.)
  • University of Kentucky ranked #234 (49.17 pts.)
  • Western Kentucky University ranked #251 (48.12 pts.)
  • Eastern Kentucky University ranked #283 (40.06).

The increased participation knocked UofL down a few notches from #84 last year to #97 in 2020.

These rankings are primarily based upon a school's score in STARS, the Sustainability Tracking, Assessment & Rating System, which is administered by the Association for the Advancement of Sustainability in Higher Education (AASHE). On Earth Day 2019, UofL officially earned a SSTARS GoldTARS Gold rating (66.24%). This was the fourth STARS report we submitted since 2011 and we have increased our score each time.

Additional points can be earned when a university makes a public decision to sell (or avoid) investments in fossil-fuel companies, especially when that decision applies to all endowment holdings (all stocks, bonds, and commingled or mutually owned shares and equity positions) and not only directly held shares. If a school still has some fossil fuel holdings, maximum scores require a plan to continue to sell off additional fossil fuel investments in the next year. While the UofL Foundation continues to shrink its exposure to fossil fuel investments, the university has not made any public decision with respect to fossil fuel investments.

Dr. Justin Mog, UofL's Assistant to the Provost for Sustainability Initiatives, was filled with Cardinal Pride to learn that the university remains the Coolest in the Commonwealth. According to Dr. Mog, "This ranking verifies that we have much to be proud of as we reflect on UofL’s progress in integrating environmental, social, and economic stewardship into everything we do – from academics and research to operations, administration, and engagement. It also confirms that we have room to grow when it comes to addressing the climate crisis. The Sustainability Council is eager to work with anyone in the Cardinal Community – students, faculty, staff, alumni, and friends – who wants to help us make UofL even 'cooler'.”

Learn more by exploring the 2020 Cool Schools rankings.