From Gas-guzzling to Clean and Green – Hobart and William Smith Colleges \
The HWS Update

From Gas-guzzling to Clean and Green

Hobart seniors Dlubac and Podkaminer to show the power of electric cars

Everywhere we look, gas prices are on the rise while the state of the environment is slipping. Scrambling for alternatives, we wonder what the next great fuel will be for our cars. For seniors Greg Dlubac and Jake Podkaminer the answer is simple: electricity.

After showing “Who Killed the Electric Car?” in his Environmental Economics course last spring, Associate Professor of Economics Tom Drennen said that converting a car from gas- to electricity-power could make a great senior project. “I was inspired by Drennen’s suggestion,” says Dlubac, an environmental studies major. “I started looking into the process and the costs; I began an on-going conversation with Professor Drennen about the project.”

With the integral help of friend and technology guru Podkaminer, Dlubac’s inspiration is accelerating into action. “This week we’ll work on removing the IC Unit and the motor in the garage that the Colleges has provided for us,” explains Dlubac. “In the weeks to come we’ll also take out the exhaust system, build a battery box and finally construct the electric motor,” says Podkaminer, a wiring and electronics wiz. The car will be up and running by Earth Week.

But their goal doesn’t end there. “We also want to show the HWS and Geneva community that they don’t have to rely on petroleum as an energy source for their cars,” Dlubac says. “In fact, an electric car is ideal in many ways for a rural area like Geneva, a college campus like Hobart and William Smith and college campuses in general,” Podkaminer proposes. “An electric vehicle would be perfect for deliveries and motoring around campus. All it really needs is a small electric docking station to charge its batteries.”

Regardless, by the looks of the projects and the growing mindset on campus: Hobart and William Smith is green and getting greener.