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Students’ Sustainability Projects Sweep Top Honors at GreenTown Conference

November 23, 2011

Rose-Hulman Institute of Technology students came up with innovative community sustainability planning ideas that swept top honors in a student poster competition at the recent GreenTown: The Future of Community Conference at Indiana State University in Terre Haute.

  Looking Towards The Future: Rose-Hulman Institute of Technology students develop proposals to increase the environmental sustainability of the campus and Terre Haute each quarter through the technical and professional communication course.

Students developed proposals for increasing the environmental sustainability of Rose-Hulman and Terre Haute as part of the fall quarter's technical and professional communication course.

Earning first-place honors was a project that examined a water recollection and disinfection system for Rose-Hulman's proposed William Alfred Cook Bioscience Laboratory.  Developing the project was the team of Whitney Baenziger, Liz Garcia and Alyse Mueller. 

Capturing second place was the team of David Hopkins, Michael Pauly and Chris Turturro for a project connecting ISU with downtown Terre Haute by installing LED street lights along Cherry Street. 

Meanwhile, Michael Bell, James Breen, Jonathan Chew and Steven LaBarge placed third for a presentation that examined using a gas turbine to generate power at Rose-Hulman.

Other teams examined a lighting redesign for the lobby of Rose-Hulman's Sports and Recreation Center (SRC), course revisions for sustainability across the curriculum, adoption of e-Readers for using textbooks, installation of high-volume and low-speed fans for the SRC fieldhouse, and reducing paper waste in the sophomore engineering curriculum.

"While only three teams could win prizes, many other teams did an outstanding job representing Rose-Hulman at the conference," said Richard House, associate professor of English.  He joined English colleagues Jessica Livingston and Caroline Carvill in teaching the course this fall.

The GreenTown conference brought community residents, educators and students together to discuss, plan and implement actionable steps that promote sustainability.  One of the featured speakers was Bob Dixson, mayor of Greensburg, Kan.  A tornado destroyed 95 percent of the town on May 4, 2007.  Rose-Hulman students in the Home for Environmentally Responsible Engineering program are planning to conduct energy audits in buildings throughout Greensburg during next year's spring break.