West Campus Wins Fall 2014 Energy Challenge

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With an extraordinary rise in the ranks—shooting to from last place in 2013 to first place this year— West Campus won the second Dorm Energy Challenge by reducing their electricity consumption 2%.

Two percent doesn’t sound like very much, but understanding that the first competition ran at the same time last year is important. Student Government started the inter-dormitory competition in the fall of 2013 in an attempt to see which residential area could reduce their energy use the most. Students compete against residents in other buildings on campus with the goal of using less energy than was used in their building during the same period the previous year. Thus, West Campus residents have done an outstanding job because that 2% is on top of last year’s reduction competition. This year’s contest ran from September to October.

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As a reward for their efforts, residents from Claflin, Sleeper, and Rich Halls were invited to an ice cream social where they were able to share the actions they took to reduce energy.

Austin Bald (COM ’16), an RA in Rich Hall who also lived in West Campus last year, said he saw a difference in the attitude toward energy conservation this year.

“I noticed that the hall lights were being turned off during the day, so that helped.”

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Jane Yang (CAS ’18) had advice for the residents of other buildings who didn’t do as well this year.

“One of the easiest things is to turn off all the lights when you don’t need them and unplug things.”

Assistant Director of Residence Life for West Campus, Mike Sirera, agreed. “It seems small, but it really is easy to leave everything on,” adding that he makes an effort to be conscious of his energy use and set an example for his residents.

Other students went even further and said they tried to use as little light as possible. “I never use the overhead light. I always use natural light in my room,” said Xajavion Seabrum (CAS ’18). Seabrum said that he when he does need artificial light, he relies solely on his desk lamp.

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Associate Director for Student Government Department of Environmental Affairs, Brad Miller (ENG ’17) congratulated the residents and explained why their efforts and their challenge as a whole are so important. “In general it’s in the best interest for the school, but also the planet, and will start a gradual process to reduce our carbon footprint”.

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