Before transferring to Adelphi from the University of Mary Washington, Christopher Mayer ’12 knew he wanted to meet people, while doing something good for the environment, so he joined the student club Environmental Action Coalition (EAC). Christopher Mayer, an environmental studies major from Bayville, Oyster Bay, is the current vice president and past treasurer of the EAC. Campus recycling activist Kathleen Watchorn describes him as “a very active and knowledgeable student.” Due to his own passion for the world around him, Chris said he “wants students to be green and to set an example.” In order to encourage more students to become environmentally aware, Chris and the rest of the EAC executive board came up with the idea to bring a light bulb exchange program to Adelphi. This program will get students to exchange their incandescent bulbs for energy-efficient Compact Fluorescent Lamps (CFL).
Associate Director of Facilities Management Robert Shipley facilitated a donation from Avon Wesco Electrical supply and local representative Angela Perrone in order to receive 500 Phillips Lighting CFLs for the University’s residence halls. By removing incandescent bulbs from residence halls, Adelphi will save approximately $8,000, for the first year the bulbs are changed, and then between $6,000 to $7,000 every other year afterwards.
As a first year initiative, on October 23, EAC partnered with the Chapman Hall Green Council’s “Lights Out” event and began giving out CFLs to residents. Mr. Mayer explained that without Mr. Shipley and Ms. Watchorn, “I didn’t think this event would happen. I explained it several times to several different people but I never thought it would happen because CFLs are [so] expensive.” Although the program has just started, the EAC plans to partner with the various Hall Councils to further distribute the donated CFLs. The goal is to have all residents use CFLs by the end of the year.
Many EAC programs are supported by OnCampus ecoAmbassadors, a branch of the Environmental Protection Agency. ecoAmbassadors work with school representatives and fellow students to implement projects from the EPA such as: increasing energy efficiency on campus, reducing water use, promoting environmental awareness, and carrying out the EPA’s mission to protect human health and the environment. After completing each activity, each student will receive a certificate of completion from the EPA. According to their website, students from schools that complete multiple activities will have the opportunity to meet with EPA scientists, policy makers, and communications staff in regional and national offices. Ms. Watchorn said that since not many universities have clubs that promote participation in such a program or have events like the light bulb exchange program, “Adelphi will become a forerunner in such a program” by continuing to reinforce and expand on the green energy initiatives already in place.