Environmentalism as an Institutional Value

Our tagline says it all: “Innovation for a Healthier Planet.”

Two U N E students tend to the chestnut tree

UNE is an institution of change-makers. Our faculty, professional staff, and students are deeply invested in the theory that we should leave this world a better place than we found it. Nowhere is this value more apparent than in the duty we feel to protect and improve environmental health. In fact, our commitment to ecological responsibility is etched into our institutional foundation as one of our University’s stated core values: “Stewardship of Our Planet.”

Our dedication has not gone unnoticed. UNE is featured in the Princeton Review’s “Guide to Green Colleges,” which recognizes outstanding sustainability-related policies, practices, and programs. 

Our commitment to the environment manifests in a multitude of ways: through the many academic programs and related research projects that prepare the next generation of environmental leaders and innovators, through our core curriculum that emphasizes environmental awareness, through the prevalence of eco-related student clubs and organizations on our campuses, and through the innovative management of our buildings and facilities.

Biddeford Campus Map

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Portland Campus Map

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The crowning jewel of our institutional efforts is our Office of Sustainability, which works collaboratively across the University to implement — and often spearhead —  numerous environmental programs and initiatives, to support our sustainability-related academic programs, and to provide our students with opportunities for hands-on learning experiences and leadership skills that will be essential in the burgeoning green economy.

We believe that by modeling sustainable practices on our campuses, educating our students on the many facets of sustainability and climate change, contributing to the body of environmental research, and by immersing students in experiential learning opportunities, we are doing our part to actively contribute to a cleaner, healthier planet. 

The Earth's E.C.O. Club [and the sustainability office] really wanted to focus on that reusing aspect of reduce, reuse, and recycle. When people were moving out of their dorms, we had boxes where people could put anything that they didn’t want in the lobby. We basically made it into a thrift shop so people weren’t just throwing things away.” — Ari Telzerow ’22