|November 10, 2008|
Inaugural 'Green Grant' winners announced
Projects ranging from an innovative way to clean car exhaust to an expanded community garden were named Monday as the inaugural winners of the Presidential Green Grants, a new initiative aimed at supporting environmentally sustainable projects at Union.
At an afternoon event at Old Chapel, President Stephen C. Ainlay highlighted 10 mostly student-led projects that will share $16,000 in grants. Each project will receive between $500 to $2,000, and plans call for similar grants to be awarded over the next two years.
President Stephen C. Ainlay is pictured with winners of the inaugural Presidential Green Grants.
"These grants should help us find the mechanisms by which we can improve the world. We are actually asking the Union community, 'How are we going to do this? What are the new ideas?'," Ainlay said. "Over the next couple of years, I hope we see even more good ideas that could become part of the way we do business at Union College."
The grants are part of wave of sustainable and environmentally friendly efforts at Union. All of these projects, including the student-driven U Recycle program, which covers the whole campus, are monitored by the U Sustain Committee. The committee is made up of about 70 students, faculty and staff.
"These grants let us harness the creativity across the Union community. At an institution like
Below is a list of the president's Green Grant Program winners and their project goals.
“Fabrication of an aerogel composite catalytic converter”
Michael Bono '09
Goal: Develop composite aerogel catalysts capable of converting the pollutants in automobile exhaust into less environmentally harmful compounds.
“Design and implementation of a micro-wind turbine to assess wind power generation on the Union College campus”
Kevin Donovan '09 and Malysa Cheng '09
Goal: A joint senior project among engineering students to design and manufacture a vertical axis micro-wind turbine. With this turbine, the students plan to test the feasibility of turbine locations and applications on campus.
“Canvas bags for U”
Kimberly Floeser '11
Goal: To replace plastic bags on campus with reusable canvas bags made out of recycled materials by making such bags available at various locations across campus.
A certificate for the Presidential Green Grant is given to Kimberly Floeser '11.
“The Union Exchange Web site”
Cathy Griffin '09
Goal: To create an online forum for Union students, faculty and staff to exchange used items and help the College community reuse goods.
“Examination of ocean wave energy through the method of a point absorber wave energy buoy”
Edward Hancock '09 and Malcolm T. Dennison '09
Goal: To build or design an ocean wave energy buoy to better harvest ocean wave energy at a cost-efficient level.
“Octopus’s Garden Organic Garden expansion”
Hugh Jenkins, professor of English
Goal: To double the size of Octopus’s Garden, an organic garden run by students, faculty and staff that provides fresh food to local food shelters, campus Dining Services and the Ozone Café.
“Mugs for Minervas”
Tom McEvoy, associate dean of students and director of Minerva Programs
Goal: To buy 1,200 reusable coffee mugs for most Minerva houses to replace disposable plastic cups.
“Eco-Friendly Potting Shed”
David L. Sanders '09
Goal: To build a shed made entirely of environmentally friendly materials that will operate off the electricity grid, provide Octopus’s Garden with a storage facility for tools and educate the Union community about the possibilities of building green.
“Energy audit of Golub House and Fox Hall”
Jordan Silletti ’09
Goal: To use data loggers that measure the kilowatt usage of lights in Golub House and Fox Hall and to determine the percentage of power used to light each building. After the analysis is complete, Silletti will propose lighting projects to decrease energy usage in these buildings.
Tyler Willey '11, recipient of a Green Grant, accepts congratulations from President Stephen C. Ainlay.
“Lighting the way to a more environmentally friendly campus”
Tyler Willey '11
Goal: To cut down Union’s energy usage through the installation of motion sensor lights in the showers and bathrooms in Davidson, Fox, West and Richmond dormitories. By installing motion sensors, the lights in these facilities will be running only when the facility is in use.