Edgewood College

From Encyclopedia of Wisconsin Environmental History
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Edgewood College is known for it's environmentally friendly atmosphere. Through the hard work of students and the involvement of the community, Edgewood has been an outstanding role model for institutions trying to "go green." Edgewood College is a part of the Green Tier program through which they have a Campus Task Force that works with environmental issues. Edgewood College is a great place for students who want to have a positive impact on the environment.


"A commitment to environmental stewardship and sustainability resonates deeply at Edgewood College, a legacy begun by the native people who first cared for this very special 55 acre campus on the shore of Lake Wingra."[1]

Edgewood college was founded in 1927 in Madison, Wisconsin as a college for women to get a two year liberal arts degree. In the early stages it was focused on producing teachers. Not until 1942 was the first bachelor's degree in science offered. The college was originally housed in part of the high school and did not have a single building to itself until 1942 when Marshall Hall was converted into student housing. Male students did not begin to attend Edgewood college until the 1960s although the campus was not officially open to both men and women until the 1970s. Since then the college has continued to grow, environmentally and otherwise.[2]

Throughout the life of Edgewood college many environmentally friendly policies have been put into place. Through the college itself, student led operations, and the involvement of the community, Edgewood has grown in to a known environmentally friendly place to further one's education.

Green Tier

The Green Tier is an organization that businesses, non profit organizations, trade associations, and communities can be a part of. There are three levels, or tiers, that organizations can fit into. Tier one acts as a motivator for businesses and communities to start thinking about ways to better their ecological footprints. The tiers go up in intensity and require more from their participants to remain at that level as they go up, but overall each levels main purpose is to encourage the practice of environmentally contentious actions.[3]

Edgewood college has been a tier one member of the Green Tier since October 9th, 2006. Since then, they have been continuing their environmental work thought the Green Campus Task Force.[4] "Edgewood College is the first college or university in Wisconsin to be accepted into Wisconsin’s Green Tier, administered by the Department of Natural Resources. The program encourages institutions and businesses to go beyond current rules and regulations to reduce their impact on the environment."[5]

The Green Campus Task Force

The Green Campus Task Force was created specifically to get students involved in the process of making Edgewood college as environmentally friendly as possible as well as getting the community involved. The idea behind partnering with the community is to not only utilize their help in greening the campus, but to encourage local businesses to practice environmentally friendly policies as well.

An inauguration to the Task Force was held on June 6, 2005. Roughly 200 staff and students of the college attended this event. This group of people sat down and eventually created four "green campus working groups."

1. Three-School Unity Working Group

2. Eco-Student Organization Working Group

3. Eco-Curriculum Working Group

4. Edgewood College Environmental Indicator Report Working Group[6]


  1. ["Edgewood College." Billion Dollar Green Challenge. Accessed April 25, 2018. http://greenbillion.org/participant/edgewood-college/.]
  2. ["A Brief History ." History of Edgewood College. Accessed May 01, 2018. https://edgewood.edu/about/history.]
  3. ["Wisconsin Department of Natural Resources." Green Tier Program Overview - Wisconsin DNR. Accessed May 01, 2018. https://dnr.wi.gov/topic/GreenTier/Overview.html.]
  4. ["Wisconsin Department of Natural Resources." Green Tier: Edgewood College - Wisconsin DNR. Accessed April 25, 2018. https://dnr.wi.gov/topic/greentier/participants/edgewoodcollege.html.]
  5. ["Edgewood College." Billion Dollar Green Challenge. Accessed April 25, 2018. http://greenbillion.org/participant/edgewood-college/.]
  6. ["Engaging the Business Community by Greening the Campus: The Edgewood College Experience" Collins, Dennis et al. June 26, 2006. Accessed April 25, 2018. http://dcollins.faculty.edgewood.edu/pdfdocuments/Engage_Business_Green_Campus[1].pdf]

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