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The Graduate School admissions goes paperless

December 2013 | by sustainNU
graduate school goes paperlessSupporting NU’s commitment to sustainability, The Graduate School (TGS) Admission Office has eliminated the practice of printing and mailing admissions letters and will be delivering decisions online only. This should eliminate approximately 2,300 admission packets, equating to nearly 91,000 pages of paper and 2,300 envelopes.

This amounts to saving 11 (40 feet tall and 6-8 inches in diameter) trees a year. But the environmental impact of choosing to go paperless doesn’t end there; manufacturing paper uses a significant amount of water, energy, and chemicals; greenhouse gases are emitted in the transport of paper to NU’s campus; printing admission materials uses electricity and ink; and the carbon footprint of sending admission materials around the world is also an environmental burden. Lastly, by choosing not to print, the Admission Office is preventing the acceptance packet from ending up in a landfill.  “We know that going paperless is the right thing to do. The Graduate School is committed to lowering its carbon footprint and our Admission Office is proud to serve as a leader in this regard,” stated Director of Admission and Recruitment for The Graduate School, Beth Bogdewic.

Northwestern’s Office of Sustainability is excited to partner with groups like TGS Admission Office in lowering their environmental footprint through reducing paper waste as well as saving energy, water, and other resources. “Paper reduction is a core element of the new Green Office Certification program. The Office of Sustainability website and sustainNU newsletter (published digitally of course) are filled with tips and ideas on how to conserve,” stated Director of Sustainability, Rob Whittier.