Constellation, an Exelon Company, has awarded Clarkson University a $20,000 grant as part of their E² Energy to Educate grant program.
This fourth consecutive grant from Constellation will allow Clarkson to continue its current partnership with Canton Central School (CCS) and expand the educational programming to include a new group of Heuvelton Central (HCS) middle school students. The project, “Food-to-Energy, Forging New Partnerships: Promoting Resource Recovery in Schools and Community to make a Lasting Impact,” will be led by Professor of Civil and Environmental Engineering Stefan Grimberg and Associate Professor of Engineering and the Institute for STEM Education, Jan DeWaters.
“Thanks to a dedicated group of Clarkson and CCS students and staff, we’ve been able to treat cafeteria food waste for the last 3 years, bringing it to our nearby anaerobic digester located at the Cornell Cooperative Extension Farm in Canton, NY. Since we started we’ve treated nearly 16 tons of food waste, generating the equivalent of about 20,600 kWh of energy,” says Grimberg. “This year our program will expand to engage Clarkson students in a campus resource recovery project using our anaerobic digester on campus.”
Clarkson students enrolled in a multidisciplinary project course will be tasked with developing and administering educational materials for CCS and HCS students, mentoring CCS students to expand their cafeteria food waste program, and creating education materials for Clarkson and the broader community. “This year we are excited to engage the Clarkson community in a food waste collection system for the newly relocated campus digester,” adds DeWaters. “Our students will leverage the excellent materials produced by last year’s group, to educate the Clarkson community about food waste and resource recovery.” Clarkson students will also help to oversee the operation of the food waste digester and will work with Grimberg and DeWaters to analyze food waste disposal options and explore sustainable food waste treatment.
The grant offers college and pre-college students a chance to work together to experience real-world problem solving, as they learn more deeply about today’s resource challenges. Constellation awarded $510,000 through its E2 Energy to Education program to support 23 hands-on STEM focusing on equity in energy, sustainability as a lifestyle, and a sustainable world.
Constellation, an Exelon company, is a leading competitive energy company providing power, natural gas, renewable energy, and energy management products and services for homes and businesses across the continental United States. The grant program exemplifies Constellation’s longstanding commitment to foster workforce development with the goals of igniting STEM in young minds, creating an expanded, diverse talent pipeline, and eliminating barriers to economic empowerment, particularly in underserved communities.