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Making Campus Sustainability a Priority

Melanie Knowles, the university's sustainability manager, shows the Kill-A-Watt meter, which can measure how many kilowatt hours various appliances are using in offices weekly. Melanie Knowles, the university's sustainability manager, shows the Kill-A-Watt meter, which can measure how many kilowatt hours various appliances are using in offices weekly.
Kent State's commitment to campus sustainability reflects a deep sense of social responsibility. And in most cases, it saves money. With a groundswell support from students, faculty, staff and community members the Sustainability Task Force recommend ways to foster campus sustainability and to lead a search for a sustainability manager. That new position was added in 2009 to oversee universitywide sustainability efforts from energy conservation to recycling to community education.

In accordance with state requirements, the university developed a strategic master plan for energy conservation that will reduce universitywide energy consumption at least 20 percent by 2014. The plan set in motion a wide range of improvements to the university's technology infrastructure and HVAC systems. It also includes voluntary conservation programs in residence halls and retro-commissioning of existing buildings to maximize energy efficiency.