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W&M awards five summer sustainability internships

William & Mary's Committee on Sustainability (COS) announced the funding of five awards for sustainability internships for the summer of 2010. This is the second year for these awards.

Summer internships are awarded annually in a competitive process and are intended to provide students with independent research opportunities that contribute to W&M's progress in achieving a sustainable campus environment. Internships are supported with funds from the Student Green Fee, which generates more than $200,000 annually. Green fees also are used to grow the W&M Green Endowment, and to support a broad spectrum of projects and activities that serve to build a more sustainable future.

"We were pleased by both the number of proposals and their overall quality", said Lynda Butler, co-director of COS. "Normally, COS would only fund four, but this year we were able to add some funds that allowed us to select five."

Projects for 2010 address a broad range of topics and issues that are of concern to the College:

  • Amanda Anderson for "Green Roof / Green Design." Anderson's project continues work begun as a pilot project funded in 2009 by COS. She will be studying the efficiency and efficacy of green roof designs and analyzing their ability to control building temperature, storm water runoff and nutrients. Professor Randolph Chambers is the faculty advisor.
  • Max Cunningham for "A Comprehensive Transportation Plan for W&M." Carbon emissions from all forms of transportation are a significant component of the W&M carbon footprint. Cunningham will be working with recent survey data and developing new assessments of transportation at the College, with the goal of developing a comprehensive proposal for reducing emissions and greening the transportation system. Professor John Swaddle is the faculty advisor.
  • Anna Jane Morris for "Public Spaces in Sustainable Gardens at W&M." Several types of sustainable garden projects have developed on campus in recent years. These include an herb garden for dining services, a teaching garden at the Keck Laboratory, and rain gardens that help control storm water runoff. Morris' project will add new dimensions to these gardens, using recovered and recycled materials to create public spaces that teach and build community around the ideas of sustainability. Professor Eric Engstrom is the faculty advisor.
  • Jamison Shabanowitz for "E-Recycling at W&M." An important area of waste management, electronics recycling requires careful planning and management. Shabanowitz's project will assess W&M's electronics waste and develop a plan for collection and disposal. Professor Eric Bradley and Rebecca Bliley are the advisors.
  • Alexandra Volpert for "Reducing Nutrient Loading in Lake Matoaka." Control of nutrients entering Lake Matoaka is an important issue for restoring water quality and reducing overgrowth by algae. Volpert's project will assess data on nutrient sources to the Lake and develop a proposal for controls and direct actions to improve water quality. Chambers and Jianjun Tian are advisors.