Congratulations to RA Chelsea Claverie from the Hercules Community, as she has been dubbed the 2016 Greenest RA!
In co-occurrence with the Kill-A-Watt Energy Conservation Competition, UCF Resident Assistants are given an opportunity to compete for “Greenest RA.” This title wins the individual a two semester, all-access meal plan provided by UCF Business Services.
Claverie approached this challenge both personally and interpersonally, by first incorporating sustainability into her own lifestyle. Not only was she the first to get Green Room Certified, but also received the greatest number of tallies in the certification point system. She was especially crafty in repurposing old items in a new way, such as painting an old side table to revamp it, using single-use glasses as flower vases, and recycling paper to make hanging papier-mâché decorations. In addition, she incorporated sustainability into her curriculum by taking Sustainability in Engineering with Dr. Tatari this semester; this course focused on the vitality of adding sustainable aspects to our technology.
Claverie noted, “Since taking the sustainability course, I have become acutely aware of many current issues involving our carbon footprint. I think that participating in the Greenest RA Challenge help[ed] me make personal lifestyle changes above and beyond what I would be able to do on my own.”
Interpersonally, Claverie engaged her residents in Building 110 through programming and signage. With this, as with any initiative, she encountered some struggles. “When I first entered the Greenest RA Challenge, I assumed that it would be easy—a natural extension of my own inclinations to recycle and conserve energy, water, etc., but I was wrong. As the year went on, I realized that many people within Hercules didn’t even know what sustainability meant, let alone how they should apply it to their own lives. Many of my residents confessed that they didn’t even recycle, or didn’t know what should and should not go into the recycle bin.”
Under this realization, she decided to create a Jeopardy-themed educational board using old housing flyers. The engaging game style bulletin focused on electricity use, sustainable food, recycling, and green living. She also staffed a Sustainability Resource Fair within Hercules that connected residents with various groups on campus that incorporate sustainability.