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Partnering with University of Rochester

The sustainability campaign created by the graduate Visual Communications class at RIT has been making waves since the project began back in September. Undergraduate students in the Global Village dormitories are responding very positively to the stickers and posters they’ve received as part of the campaign, and there is every reason to hope they will make at least a small impact in the overall goal of conserving energy on campus.

In addition to Global Village, the class has been in collaboration with University of Rochester Recycling Coordinator, Amy Kardie to bring the project to their campus. As of October 26th, the stickers and posters have been distributed to two dorms on U of R’s campus. Known as “The Towers,” both Anderson Tower and Wilder Tower’s are both similar in size and layout and according to Kardie, the dorms are primarily occupied by upperclassman. Suits and some single rooms are home to the 258 beds in Anderson and the 264 beds in Wilder.

Along with receiving the products the following message was sent to students: “You will be receiving helpful visual reminders to help you as dormitory residents reduce energy usage. RAs will be distributing easily removable blue decals for the backs of laptops and smaller green stickers.The green stickers could be placed on smaller devices like an iPhone charger. Other visual reminders include humorous (not instructive) light switch covers and posters. By using less energy the university spends less money and does not have to raise costs on fees and tuition. By switching off a light or unplugging an unused electronic device, you could be helping our environment AND saving money. Plus, the materials are fun and free!  If you’d like quick facts about saving energy visit: hunt.unwasteny.org”

Kardie explained that, “Both towers have received Energy Star Certification and with the newly opened LEED Gold Certified O’Brien Hall in the towers area, we hope the competition will help create conservation/sustainability awareness in this part of campus.”

There is no word yet on how the products are fairing over at U of R, however, if the success at RIT is any indication, there is every reason to believe the residents of “The Towers” are enjoying their new decorations as well.

The Visual Communications class is thrilled to share their hard work with the college and hope that their efforts prove successful for U of R’s goal of creating conservation awareness on their campus.

Global Village residents give their feedback about ‘Unplug’ stickers

This past week graduate students in RIT’s Visual Communications class conducted interviews with undergraduate residents in the global village dorms at RIT. The purpose of these interviews was to gain feedback regarding the “Unplug” stickers that were handed out as part of their ongoing sustainability project.

The overall goal of the project is to influence students to conserve energy at RIT. It was decided upon by the class that the best way to grab the undergrads attention was with the message “Unplug,” featured on large blue stickers for laptops and small green stickers for other electronic chargers. These stickers are meant to be a reminder to students of the importance of unplugging their electronics when they are not using them. After weeks of preparation the final product was distributed to residents in global village.

After interviewing undergraduate residents, the responses about the stickers were very positive. Many students indicated that they liked the colors and sizes of the stickers, commenting on their attractiveness and message. Most of the students interviewed had seen the stickers prior to being interviewed, while other students were not familiar with them. Students who had seen the stickers said they had been given to them by their RA’s, seen them in friend’s dorm rooms, and on laptops. The mini stickers seemed to be a big hit, as many students said they would definitely use them, however, students also mentioned that they had not seen or received the small stickers.

When asked if they were likely to use the stickers, one student said yes, “Either my laptop case thing that goes on my laptop or my binder, planner thing, that I put stickers on, or my bed board. I haven’t made up my mind yet.”

Students were honest about the likelihood the stickers will change their behavior, but they do seem to understand the purpose, saying things like, “I think its a good idea, especially since people might not know that it uses that much electricity when they are not being used,” and, “If its right there I’d do it more than not knowing about it,”

Whether the stickers will make a difference in lowering energy consumption in the Global Village dormitories is yet to be seen, but hearing all of the enthusiastic feedback from students is a good foreshadowing of positive results. The class has also designed glow in the dark light switch covers that will soon be given out to Global Village residents. One student in particular is very eager to receive this sticker stating, “I really want the ones that says, don’t leave me hanging.”

Students in the Visual Communication class have been working on this project since the beginning of September with hopes of raising awareness about sustainability at RIT.