We¬†knew it all along, and now it‚Äôs official: UC Irvine is cool.
For¬†the third year running, UCI made the list of the top 10 ‚ÄúCoolest Schools,‚ÄĚ announced¬†today by Sierra magazine. The annual ranking salutes U.S. colleges and¬†universities that help solve climate problems, make significant efforts to¬†operate sustainably, and help prepare the next generation of leaders in this¬†arena. Judged on education, research, operations and management practices, UCI placed¬†ninth.
‚ÄúWe¬†are extremely pleased to once again be among the top 10 ‚ÄėCoolest Schools‚Äô in¬†the nation,‚ÄĚ UCI Chancellor Michael Drake said. ‚ÄúI am especially proud of our¬†consistency, being one of only three U.S. campuses to be included on the list¬†for three consecutive years.‚ÄĚ
Wendell¬†Brase, UCI vice chancellor for administrative and business services, said the¬†application and evaluation process was rigorous. ‚ÄúThere are many good¬†institutions on this list, all doing great things in the area of¬†sustainability. We are pleased to be part of such an outstanding group,‚ÄĚ he said.
UCI¬†has traditionally scored well for its efforts to reduce automobile traffic to¬†and from campus, energy-efficient buildings, waste diversion and¬†water savings. On the academic side, UCI manages three field research sites¬†within the University of California‚Äôs Natural Reserve System and has partnerships¬†with another five locations within California and abroad; operates 37 research¬†centers, institutes and programs related to sustainability; and has more than¬†175 faculty members involved in collaborative research and instruction across an array of relevant issues.¬†Among¬†UCI‚Äôs highlights:
- Researchers at the National Fuel Cell Research¬†Center invented the core technology used in the world‚Äôs first¬†tri-generation fuel cell and hydrogen energy station.
- UCI‚Äôs Department of Earth System Science was¬†the first academic unit anywhere devoted to studying the entire planet. It¬†celebrated its 20th anniversary last September.
- The Smart¬†Labs Initiative, now the campus‚Äôs showcase project in President Obama‚Äôs¬†Better Buildings Challenge, safely reduces energy use in research¬†laboratories, which typically account for two-thirds of the energy¬†consumed on most research university campuses.
- The Summer¬†Sustainability Series, launched in 2011, was held again this summer. It¬†attracted 75 emerging leaders from 25 countries to share ideas about how science,¬†law and governance contribute to sustainability.
- The new California Plug Load Research Center,¬†or CalPlug, a public-private research partnership established in 2011 with¬†funding from the California Energy Commission, aims to improve energy¬†efficiency in the use and design of consumer electronics.
- The Center¬†for Land, Environment & Natural Resources was created this year to¬†leverage the UCI School of Law‚Äôs expertise in environmental, natural¬†resources and land use law.
Bob¬†Sipchen, Sierra magazine‚Äôs editor-in-chief, said he feels privileged to connect¬†with and learn from traditional institutions evolving in nontraditional ways.¬†‚ÄúWith their ever-growing emphasis on environmental responsibility,‚ÄĚ he said, ‚Äúthese¬†schools are channeling the enthusiasm of their students, who consistently cite¬†climate disruption and other environmental issues as the most serious¬†challenges their generation must confront, while demonstrating leadership for¬†other civic institutions.‚ÄĚ
The¬†top 10 ‚ÄúCoolest Schools‚ÄĚ for 2012 are:
- UC Davis
- Georgia Institute of Technology
- Stanford University
- University of Washington
- University of Connecticut
- University of New Hampshire
- Duke University
- Yale University
- UC Irvine
- Appalachian State University
About the University of California, Irvine: Founded in 1965, UCI is a¬†top-ranked university dedicated to research, scholarship and community service.¬†Led by Chancellor Michael Drake since¬†2005, UCI is among the most dynamic campuses in the University of California¬†system, with nearly 28,000 undergraduate and graduate students, 1,100 faculty¬†and 9,000 staff. Orange¬†County‚Äôs second-largest¬†employer, UCI contributes an annual economic impact of $4 billion. For more UCI¬†news, visit www.today.uci.edu.
News Radio: UCI maintains on campus an ISDN line for¬†conducting interviews with its faculty and experts. Use of this line is¬†available for a fee to radio news programs/stations that wish to interview UCI faculty and experts. Use of the ISDN line is subject to availability and approval by the university.