KU News: KU Edwards Campus joins Evergy’s Renewables Direct program, supporting wind energy expansion

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KU Edwards Campus joins Evergy’s Renewables Direct program, supporting wind energy expansion
OVERLAND PARK — Sustainability has always been a priority for the University of Kansas and its Edwards Campus (KUEC) in Overland Park. Participation in Evergy’s Renewables Direct program is KUEC’s latest sustainability effort. The 20-year agreement KUEC signed with Evergy went into effect this month, supporting the expansion of wind energy in Kansas through the purchase of 400 kilowatts of wind energy offsets. The wind energy comes from the Ponderosa Wind Energy Center, located in Beaver County, Oklahoma, which began operating in 2020.

KU announces new 2021-2025 Self Graduate Fellows
LAWRENCE – Eleven doctoral students have been selected to receive the University of Kansas’ prestigious Madison and Lila Self Graduate Fellowship for the 2021-2022 academic year. The fellowship covers full tuition and fees, provides graduate research assistant support of $32,000 per year, a $5,500 professional development award and a unique professional development program. Recipients include Kansas students from Hays and Olathe and Missouri students from Atherton and Kansas City.

Full stories below.
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Contact: Hannah Lemon, KU Edwards Campus, 913-897-8755, [email protected], @KUEdwardsCampus
KU Edwards Campus joins Evergy’s Renewables Direct program, supporting wind energy expansion

OVERLAND PARK — Sustainability has always been a priority for the University of Kansas and its Edwards Campus (KUEC) in Overland Park. Participation in Evergy’s Renewables Direct program is KUEC’s latest sustainability effort. The 20-year agreement KUEC signed with Evergy went into effect this month, supporting the expansion of wind energy in Kansas through the purchase of 400 kilowatts of wind energy offsets. The wind energy comes from the Ponderosa Wind Energy Center, located in Beaver County, Oklahoma, which began operating in 2020.

According to Evergy, the Renewables Direct program, created in 2018, “allows commercial and industrial customers to offset a percentage of their energy usage through a renewable resource.”

By bypassing more cost-prohibitive methods of renewable energy, the program allows KU to access renewable energy in a way that’s financially viable.

Evergy approached the KU Edwards Campus as a result of KU-Lawrence’s prior involvement with the program.

Stuart Day, dean of the KU Edwards Campus and School of Professional Studies, said the Renewables Direct program offers an excellent opportunity to further KU’s goal of moving toward more sustainable practices.

“It’s been a priority to reduce our carbon footprint here at KU,” Day said. “When Evergy approached us with this program, we were more than happy to play a role in sustainability efforts that impact communities statewide.”

Since its creation in 2016, the KUEC Sustainability Committee has worked to incorporate sustainable practices on campus and educate students, staff and faculty on sustainability. The committee has supported additions such as electric vehicle charging stations, accessible recycling bins, updated signage, glass recycling, LED lighting and water bottle refill stations. As a result, the KU Edwards Campus was recognized as a “Green Office” by the KU Center for Sustainability in 2018. Annual events such as Campus Sustainability Week and Earth Day provide opportunities for faculty and students to get involved with efforts such as landscaping and litter pickup. The campus is also a member of the Green Business Network.

“The commitment by the University of Kansas to renewable electricity from wind helps grow wind development in our area, drives investment in local communities, creates jobs and demonstrates a commitment to sustainability,” said Jeff Martin, Evergy vice president, community and customer operations. “I congratulate KU for advancing its sustainability goals and supporting Kansas wind energy.”
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Contact: Daniel Rivera, Self Graduate Fellowship, [email protected]
KU announces new 2021-2025 Self Graduate Fellows

LAWRENCE – Eleven doctoral students have been selected to receive the University of Kansas’ prestigious Madison and Lila Self Graduate Fellowship for the 2021-2022 academic year. This incoming group of fellows is among over 200 students who have benefited from the fellowship since it was established in 1989.

The Self Graduate Fellowship is a four-year package awarded to incoming or first-year doctoral students who demonstrate leadership, initiative, and passion for achievement. The fellowship covers full tuition and fees, provides graduate research assistant support of $32,000 per year, a $5,500 professional development award and a unique professional development program. The Fellow Development Program provides general education and training in communication, management, innovation, policy and leadership to assist Self Graduate Fellows in preparation for future leadership roles. The role of the development program is to complement the specialized education and training provided in doctoral programs. The total value of the four-year doctoral fellowship exceeds $180,000.

The fellowship’s mission is to identify and recruit exceptional doctoral students who demonstrate the promise to make significant contributions to their fields and society as a whole.

The late Madison “Al” and Lila Self launched and permanently endowed the Self Graduate Fellowship in 1989, motivated by their strong belief in the vital importance of developing leadership for tomorrow. Madison Self was a 1943 KU graduate in chemical engineering. Lila Self grew up in Eudora and attended KU with the Class of 1943.

The new Self Graduate Fellows for 2021-2025:

1. Alicia Brown of Chinle, Arizona: bachelor’s degree in environmental sciences from Haskell Indian Nations University; first-year doctoral student in molecular biosciences
2. Madeline Haga of Fort Smith, Arkansas: expected bachelor’s degree in chemistry from the University of Central Arkansas; incoming doctoral student in chemistry
3. Samuel Lim of Kansas City, Missouri: bachelor’s degree in computer sciences from the University of Missouri-Kansas City; first-year doctoral student in computational biology
4. Megan Myers of Olathe: bachelor’s degree in microbiology from KU; doctoral student in the interdisciplinary graduate program in biomedical sciences, KU Medical Center
5. Daniel Owen of Brookfield, Wisconsin: bachelor’s degree in aerospace engineering from the Florida Institute of Technology; first-year doctoral student in aerospace engineering
6. Scott Ring of Hays: bachelor’s degree in mechanical engineering from KU; first-year doctoral student in mechanical engineering
7. Bryan Rodriguez-Colon of Manati, Puerto Rico: bachelor’s degree in geology and bachelor’s degree in biology from the University Puerto Rico Mayaguez and master’s degree in geology from KU; first-year doctoral student in geology
8. Mikayla Smith of Olathe: bachelor’s degree in pharmacy from KU; first-year doctoral student in pharmaceutical chemistry
9. Lillian Springer of Indianapolis, Indiana: expected bachelor’s degree in economics from Butler University; incoming doctoral student in economics
10. Lee Taylor of Atherton, Missouri: bachelor’s degree in electrical engineering from the KU; incoming doctoral student in electrical engineering
11. Megan Wittman of Bloomington, Illinois: expected bachelor’s degree in chemical engineering from KU; incoming doctoral student in environmental engineering.
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Erinn Barcomb-Peterson, director of news and media relations, [email protected]

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