FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE
Andrea J. Burney, APR
Director of Public Relations
DCC RECOGNIZED FOR SUSTAINABILITY PROGRAMS AT STATE CONFERENCE
Jerry Franklin, Director of
Manufacturing and Technical Services, holds the Crystal
Award DCC received for its energy and sustainability
DANVILLE, VA, March 26, 2013 – Danville Community College was
recognized recently for its sustainability programs at the
Virginia Commonwealth University Energy and Sustainability
Conference held in Richmond. The College received the Crystal
Award, which recognizes leadership in the areas of energy and
sustainability. Jerry Franklin, Director of Manufacturing and
Technical Services, accepted the award on behalf of the DCC.
“We feel we have an effective and innovative program in place to
guide our students, faculty and community to develop new
sustainable habits and appreciate this opportunity for
recognition of our efforts.,” Franklin said
Franklin noted the following initiatives in place that focus on
energy and sustainability:
1. “Sustainability Scholars” program, in which an award is
earned upon completion of 15 credits from courses designated as
having at least 20 percent sustainability content.
Sustainability content includes environmental science,
alternative energy technologies (electric vehicles, bio-fuels,
storage, solar, geothermal, low-head hydro, etc.), conservation,
and improvement in “Environmental Performance Index” variables
i.e. Environmental Health, Ecosystem Vitality, Productive
Natural Resource Sustainability and Climate Change. Curricula
impacted by this designation include Air Conditioning and
Refrigeration, Computer-Aided Drafting and Design, Electrical
and Electronics Engineering Technology, Automotive Analysis and
Repair, and Building Trades.
2. Career Studies Certificate program has been developed and
focuses on Alternative Energy Technologies to meet the workforce
needs of local sustainability-related companies. Danville has
both a LiFePO4 battery company and a solar panel manufacturer
that need workers trained in these sustainable technologies.
DCC’s battery technology course is rare among community
colleges. The program also has courses in solar installation,
energy conservation and wind energy generation. So far,
approximately 55 students have taken classes in these
3. Funding for professional development in sustainability
topics. A portion of the college’s professional development
budget is designated specifically toward training and education
in sustainability topics. As an example, faculty members have
been trained at UL Labs in the solar installation facility.
4. DCC is a member of the Virginia Weatherization Center (VWC),
and has trained contractors in home weatherization techniques.
Four Danville and Martinsville homes, in need of weatherization,
were used as learning platforms where $1,000 of material
improvements were made in each home. Twelve contractors received
BPI (Building Performance Institute) certification through the
course work at DCC and the VWC. Funding was provided by VWC and
the Dan River Regional Collaborative.
5. DCC’s Phi Theta Kappa honor society has instituted a
recycling program on campus that has successfully recycled
paper, plastic, aluminum, electronics and printer cartridges.
Students also have a textbook recycling program to recycle used
textbooks through the “Better World Books Project”. Students
routinely car pool for out of town trips as well as local
commutes to campus.
6. The DCC Automotive and Air Conditioning and Refrigeration
Departments recover and recycle refrigerants from home and auto
air conditioners, using Environmental Protection Agency (EPA)
approved techniques and equipment. Also, materials such as
paint, motor, transmission and gear oils, paint thinner,
antifreeze, etc. are collected and recycled through an approved
commercial materials recycler. In addition, chemicals from DCC’s
chemical laboratories are controlled and regulated by policies
of the DCC Chemical Hygiene Committee.
7. On campus, DCC is constantly seeking ways to improve energy
efficiency of its buildings. Annual energy savings are tracked
through improvements, such as upgrading of lighting for
efficiency, automatic occupancy sensors, low-flow water fixtures
and weatherization of buildings.
In the community, Franklin said DCC also developed and led a
community initiative in a novel and innovative approach to
reduce auto pollution, save gasoline, and improve fitness among
community citizens. The program, known as “E Bike Danville®”, is
a collaboration led by DCC’s Workforce Services Office with the
Danville Science Center, City of Danville, Virginia Tech
Extension, LifeBatt Battery Company, Spin Bike Shop, Gerhardt
Engineering. The Dan River Regional Foundation providing
E Bike Danville® studies and promotes the use of electric
bicycles as a practical substitute for automobiles. The first
phase studied the practicality of using e-bikes for local
commuting such as work, shopping, errands or visiting friends.
During the summer of 2012, DCC loaned e-bikes to 24 volunteer
evaluators for two-week periods to use in place of their cars.
Evaluators were asked to keep a journal of all round-trip rides
and report their findings.
The E-Bike Danville® study, which was recently released,
indicated that e bikes are a practical means of transportation
for short (less than 20 miles) trips. An e bike is 18 times less
polluting than an automobile, and riders save money on gasoline,
insurance, maintenance and registration of a car. In addition,
health and fitness is improved, since e bikes assist the rider,
when needed, on hills and windy conditions.
The E Bike Danville® program has gained statewide, national and
international attention for its innovative approach to using e
bikes as regular transportation. In addition, DCC is developing
a certificate program in collaboration with the Light Electric
Vehicle Association, (LEVA), which will be presented nationally
to e bike dealers and manufactures to train technicians to
repair e bikes and other motorized vehicles. The training
program should be ready to begin summer 2013.
For more information about DCC programs and services to foster
sustainability habits, please contact Jerry Franklin, at
434.797.8573; toll free at 800.560.4291 ext. 8573; or
Copyright © 2013 by Danville Community College