Madison, Wis. – The University of Wisconsin-Oshkosh (UWO) is focused on sustainability, particularly a responsibility to real-world applications. This fall, UWO college students and staff employees had the opportunity to put this campus vision into practice by competing in the Higher Education Kit Challenge alongside other Wisconsin universities. After determining UWO won the challenge, students and staff discovered they saved $2,000 on their utility bills by installing products to improve energy and water efficiency in their homes.
The Higher Education Kit Challenge, sponsored by FOCUS ON ENERGY®, provided off-campus students and staff members the opportunity to order free energy-efficient care packages containing LEDs, showerheads, power strips, and more. Each energy-saving pack ordered resulted in points earned for the school. In total, UWO students and staff ordered over 240 kits, which reduced their energy use by over 14,000 kWh. This is the equivalent of saving the greenhouse gas emissions from two gasoline-powered cars driven for an entire year.
"Our campus had a great time participating in this challenge," said Bradley Spanbauer, Sustainability Director at UWO. "Any way we can be good stewards of our resources and educate future generations on ways to lower their monthly water and electric bills will go a long way in creating a cultural environment where sustainability is at the forefront."
In addition to the energy savings UWO received, Focus on Energy is providing the University with a check for $5,000 that will go towards energy efficiency-related projects on campus.
"The goal of this competition was to bring greater awareness to making smart energy choices," said Bill Plamann, Energy Advisor from Focus on Energy. "For some, this challenge might be the first step in their energy savings journey. Understanding the charges behind your utility bills will ultimately lay the foundation for better managing future energy consumption."
Other participants in the challenge included: