The sustainable energy challenge between La Verne residence halls has returned for a second semester to encourage students to conserve energy and help the school.
The rules for the competition are that each floor or building has to save a minimum of 10 percent of the energy they expended to qualify. The group that has the most energy savings will win commemorative T-shirts and a pizza party. However, all floors and buildings must exceed 10 percent in overall savings in order for anyone to win.
The competition is hosted by the Sustainable Campus Consortium.
The eight teams are: Oaks A, B, C; Oaks D, E; Oaks F; Stu-Han; Brandt; Vista one; Vista two; and Vista three and four. The dorms were divided this way so each team can have roughly the same amount of people.
“I think it’s very important for the environment, especially in this time,” resident assistant and junior philosophy major Cheyenne Page said. “It’s important to have people recognize and remember that we still live on Earth; nature is still very much a part of our lives. We should do things, little things, to protect us.”
The SCC has worked with the resident assistants and shared information so they can lead the teams.
“They made it really building-specific,” RA and senior philosophy and religion major Meaghan McHenry said. “In Vista, it’s easy to just leave your light on. But in Brandt, it’s easy to leave your fan plugged in. That’s something that can be easily taken care of.”
Page said they told them different strategies to conserve energy but did not have strict guidelines.
Last semester’s winner, Oaks F, won by saving 50 percent of the energy they expended.
“That’s pretty awesome,” said Christine Broussard, chairwoman of the natural science division and co-chairwoman of the SCC.
The overall 14 percent all the dorms saved together means the competition saved the school $6,600 in energy costs, Broussard said.
This time around, the SCC decided to hold the competition in the fall instead of the spring because the savings continue through the semester, according to information put out by former competition sponsor Campus Conservation Nationals.
“We wanted to do it in the fall so whatever savings we generated would actually continue the entire academic year,” Broussard said. “Depending on how things go, we might do it every semester, but we’re just trying it out to see how well it works in the fall.”
Broussard said Campus Conservation Nationals usually sponsors these competitions and helps institutions run them, but they stopped doing it last year.
“Last year they canceled the competition, but we were ready and we knew our students were ready so we went ahead and did it on our own without that framework,” Broussard said.
The competition began Oct. 1 and will continue until Thanksgiving break.
Celene Vargas can be reached at email@example.com.