By Genevieve Mills–
The University of Louisville has made many efforts to encourage sustainability on campus, and with a newly established award, they will encourage it throughout the world. The Leigh Ann Conn Prize for Renewable Energy is a prize of $50,000 that will be distributed for the first time in the fall of 2013.
According to the prize’s prospectus, the purpose “is to acknowledge, publicize and disseminate outstanding ideas and achievements in research related to the science, engineering, technology and commercialization of renewable energy.”
This award will be given to the creator or creators of an idea or achievement that could have a global impact on renewable energy. A committee of members of the faculty advisory for the Conn Center for Renewable Energy Research will judge nominations of individuals, university administrators, scientists, entrepreneurs, etc., that they accept now until March first.
The award is named after the late daughter of Hank and Rebecca Conn of Atlanta, who are research center supporters and prize benefactors. The winner will be judged on the economic effect of their project or idea, including its originality, scientific merit and global impact. They must also “participate in from two to four days of community and campus events associated with the award ceremonies in the fall of 2013.”
The Conn Center is a part of the J.B. School of Engineering and is a research center devoted to development in renewable energy. Hank Conn, the center’s benefactor, was the 2009 U of L Alumnus of the Year. He earned his bachelor’s and master’s degrees from the Speed School and became a master of business administration from the College of Business. He is also the former vice president of global management consulting firm A.T. Kearney Inc.
The goal of this award is to raise awareness about renewable energy and the merits it has for not only U of L, but the planet. As U of L works to become a greener campus, this award will encourage others to do the same.