For Emily Earll ’08, what began as interest in lighting around campus has snowballed into a project that will make the campus streets and surrounding area safer while at the same time decreasing energy consumption throughout the Town of Geneva.
“Since my first year, I have had a concern with the level of lighting on-campus, especially on Pulteney Street and the Hill,” explains Earll, an English major. “For my last semester, I did not want to take a class just because I needed the credit; I wanted to do something that I was interested in and that would benefit the HWS community.”
She approached Associate Professor of Economics and Chair of the Environmental Studies Program Tom Drennen and Associate Director of Buildings & Grounds Scott Woodworth with her desire to take a closer look at the lighting on campus and was encouraged to begin an internship with the Buildings & Grounds department.
Her initial focus, lighting on campus, soon grew to include Geneva City street lighting, too. Earll began correspondence with the community group “Youth as Partners,” as well as City Counselor Jackie Augustine ’99 to discuss increased lighting in high traffic areas.
Now, Earll is working with town and city officials, including Mayor Stu Einstein, in an attempt to improve the efficiency and safety of the High Pressure Sodium Vapor lamps that Geneva is currently using and increase the lighting in high traffic areas.
She has also had the opportunity to work with folks from the Lighting Research Center in Troy, N.Y. and individuals from Philips Lighting in Eindhoven, the Netherlands, as well as with representatives from the New York State Energy and Research Development Authority to gather information for the project.
Though she’ll probably never get to see the results of her work, Earll is proud that she got the ball rolling. “Geneva has been my home for the past four years,” she says. “I want to make it safe, efficient and appealing for future residents and students.”
Earll, who has also involved in many of the HWS Green Initiatives, is a student member on the Colleges’ Board of Trustees, a member of William Smith Congress, a former member of the Laurel Society as well as a senior intern at the Office of Admissions.