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UW-Eau Claire receives silver rating for sustainability efforts

The University of Wisconsin-Eau Claire has earned a silver rating in a reporting process that measures the sustainability performances of universities and colleges around the world.

UW-Eau Claire is one of 355 institutions to receive a valid Sustainability Tracking, Assessment & Rating System (STARS) designation from the Association for the Advancement for Sustainability in Higher Education (AASHE). The ratings include universities from around the world, including Australia, Canada, Greece, Hungary, Ireland, Mexico and United Arab Emirates.

The STARS global sustainability standard is measured by assessing a university’s sustainability practices in academics, engagement, operations, planning and administration, and innovation and leadership.


Lily Strehlow, campus sustainability coordinator

Stakeholders from across campus worked hard to attain the silver rating, says Lily Strehlow, UW-Eau Claire sustainability coordinator. With the campuswide, all-inclusive benchmark, the university can begin working toward the gold- and, eventually, platinum-level STARS ratings. 

“I am particularly excited that UWEC scored highly in the research credit section, which shows that our faculty are working diligently across colleges and departments to address today’s sustainability challenges,” Strehlow says. “By incorporating undergraduate student researchers, we are educating the next generation of climate solutionists.”

UW-Eau Claire’s 2025 strategic plan commits the university to integrating sustainability into curricula and high-impact practices across disciplines and campuses, and encouraging partnerships that intersect health and wellness, as well as equity, diversity, inclusion and student affairs and sustainability.

Among campus initiatives are the creation of the Administrative Office of Sustainability under the leadership of the director of risk management, safety, and sustainability, and the addition of a full-time sustainability coordinator. The Administrative Office of Sustainability and the Student Office of Sustainability collaborate to address environmental challenges, implement eco-friendly initiatives and cultivate a culture of sustainability among students, faculty and staff.