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Friday Night Lights Program to save energy, utility costs

The University of Toledo is taking another step toward environmental sustainability as turning off unneeded lights becomes a new priority.

Two student organizations, Engineers Without Borders and the Society for Environmental Education, have teamed up with Brooke Mason, UT interim sustainability specialist, to create the Friday Night Lights Program.

Students involved will spend their Friday nights turning out lights on campus that would be left on over the weekend. Because Friday Night Lights is not a student organization but a program between two existing student organizations, those who participate have nothing to sign to make a commitment.

“Students will be gathering in the Student Union every Friday night, buildings will be assigned, and we will have a priorities list,” Mason said. “Students will then divide up into small groups with building floor plans, a clipboard and name tags.”

Mason said depending on how many students participate each Friday, first covered will be high-priority buildings, and the group will get to as many buildings as possible from there. It will take students anywhere from 20 to 40 minutes to complete an assigned building.

Pennsylvania State University and Bowling Green State University have similar programs.

“When I was a student at BGSU, I was involved in Friday Night Lights because there were so many lights not being turned off over the weekend and that is why I’m bringing it to UT,” Mason said. “This is a good way to kick off the weekend for students who want some service hours.”

Energy savings will be monitored and recorded at the end of the semester, according to Mason.

“We can keep track of the meter data. We will run the data and see how much total energy is being saved and how that converts to real monetary savings for the University.”

The kickoff for the weekly Friday Night Lights Program will be Friday, Nov. 9, at 5:30 p.m.

Anyone interested can meet in the Student Union South Dining Hall.

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