by enA MOAts
As of February 21st, Saint Mary’s University Student Senate Legislative Affairs Committee has been granted permission from administration to begin fun- draising for solar panels on the Saint Mary’s campus. If anyone hasn’t got- ten the emails, seen the fundraising prog- ress poster, or heard by word of mouth about this exciting initiative already, it’s time to be- come enlightened on the solar panel subject.
Working to re- duce the university’s carbon footprint to serve as an example for the surrounding community, save energy and money to devote to other important projects, and involve students in hands on experiences with the panels and their impact on the environment, committee members, Conner Ellinghuysen, Reikel Biechler, Katie O’Leary, and Peter Hegland have made a goal to raise $20,000 by the end of the semester so that the panels can be installed over the course of the summer.
According to Ellinghuysen, this $60,000 proj- ect is being backed and partly funded by a group called the Minnesota Student Energy Project to acquire a 16.4 kW system with 40 panels. Each of these 16, 400 watts costs $3.19 to install.
That’s where students, alumni, friends, fam- ily, the Winona Community, and businesses come in: as of right now, the committee has raised $751. Ellinghuysen encour- ages help “by giving online on our givemn website, or drop of cash or check gifts to the busi- ness office under the Solar Panel Student Initiative. They can also visit our facebook page, like it, and invite others...Each gift will be recognized on our solar panel education board that will be put up to talk about the panels, and to thank all of the supporters and donors.” Hegland added that students can especially help by spreading the word via Twitter and Facebook about the “Give a Watt?” campaign. The following are websites to promote donation: http://givemn.razoo. com/story/Solar-Panel-Student-Initiative?referral_