March Madness Begins: Sustainable Sixteen Unveils Top Environmental and Sustainable Colleges and Universities

In the midst of March Madness, Enviance, Inc. and Environmental Leader recently unveiled the “Sustainable 16,” a group of sixteen colleges and universities who demonstrate excellence in environmental academics. The “Sustainable 16” are now in the running to become the first-ever March Madness “National Champion” in the tournament that highlights Environmental Studies. To be considered in the running for the Sustainable 16, schools were required to fill out a survey to explain why they should be selected and what they have done in the field to validate their credentials. A panel of experts then evaluated the answers to round out the list.

Rounding out the Sustainable 16 are… (in alphabetical order)

  1. Baylor University
  2. Colby College
  3. Colorado State University
  4. Cornell University
  5. Duke University
  6. Humboldt State University
  7. Montana State University
  8. Ohio State University
  9. Purdue University
  10. Rochester Institute of Technology
  11. Temple University
  12. University of California, Davis
  13. University of Florida
  14. University of Michigan – Dearborn
  15. UNC Asheville
  16. University of Texas at Arlington

The tournament will mirror the format of the NCAA Men’s College Basketball Tournament and will evaluate colleges and universities on the academic and sustainability abilities. Schools across the country were sent out a survey to ensure qualification. The survey response covered topics related to curriculum, graduation rate, facilities and student retention.

After being announced as part of the Sustainable 16, faculty and students are being asked to support their entries with short essays, social media or video submissions. Based on their responses, they will have the potential to advance to the “Environmental Eight” or the “Final Four” to eventual first-ever “National Champion.”  The “Environmental Eight” will be announced on Monday, March 26.

Tournament winners will be awarded $5000 to the environmental and sustainability department of one National Champion. The department chair or member of the faculty will receive an all-expenses-paid trip to San Diego to attend the Enviance User Conference April 16-2 where they will lead a panel titled, “What Tomorrow’s Environmental Leaders Need to Know.”

More information on the March Madness Tournament for environmental studies can be found by emailing, or by visiting or . You can also follow @enviance or @ELDaily on Twitter.