The Ralph O’Connor Sustainable Energy Institute (ROSEI) celebrated Earth Day by hosting a celebration for students in the Great Hall at Levering on April 22. It was the first public-facing event ROSEI has hosted, and it had a great turnout from both students and faculty!

On top of an impromptu sustainability quiz hosted by Stuart Chaitkin, senior associate with the Department of Environmental Health and Engineering, ROSEI also hosted a couple of different activities that party attendees could participate in, including voting on the design for a water bottle. There were nine submissions from students and all received votes, but below is the design that won after the 50 votes were tallied up.

ROSEI also had hopes and dreams boards for attendees write on where they could express their thoughts on a variety of sustainable energy-related topics. The boards featured three questions that attendees could answer, and below are some of our favorite responses.

Why are you so passionate about sustainable energy?

  • Because I like breathing clean air, especially with people experiencing long-term effects after contracting COVID. Breathing has never been so important.
  • I want my nephew to have a chance to live in a beautiful and safe world.
  • It is the only way to improve the living conditions of every being on this planet
  • I love our planet and feel compelled to care for the Earth!
  • It’s the key to lowering greenhouse gas emissions.
  • I’ve always loved being in nature and I want everyone to be able to experience it.
  • I hate air pollution!

What do you wish existed as a JHU student group or competition in sustainable energy?

  • A group that focuses on educating others about the benefits of sustainable energy efforts, specifically in local Baltimore schools.
  • Sustainable art displays.
  • A hack-a-thon centered on sustainable energy.
  • Student group to explore career/research opportunities in sustainable energy and see how skills can be applied.
  • Sustainability book club and/or journal club.
  • Career fairs geared towards climate technology, not just energy.

What issues in sustainable energy do you want to see Hopkins address?

  • Help vulnerable communities have access to energy in extreme weather events.
  • To replace fossil fuels and decrease harm/death.
  • Divest from fossil fuels.
  • Incentives/Efforts for reusable food containers and utensils.
  • Invest in composting as a way to fight pollution and create a better climate.
  • Provide a place to recycle electronics.
  • Provide more information on what we can do as individuals to help the environment.
  • Focus on ways to make JHU, especially the Homewood campus, more energy efficient.
  • More energy efficient buildings (LEED Certified).
  • Provide more education about what sustainable energy can look like.
  • To fight against the idea that sustainable energy efforts are not economically viable.
  • Emphasize the importance of recycling.
  • Promote plant-based food & abolish factory farming.
  • Zero food waste, reusable containers, and solar panels.

Thank you to all who came out and attended ROSEI’s first ever event. We hope you had a fun time and that we will see you at one of our events again in the near future!