This is an excerpt from EERE Network News, a weekly electronic newsletter.

March 19, 2014

Tapping University Students for Energy Efficiency Business Solutions

All across the country, businesses, nonprofits, and local governments are seeing the benefits of investing in energy efficiency—it saves money on energy costs and frees up funds for other uses. To take their energy efficiency investments to the next level, organizations are tapping into the innovative thinking of the nation’s university students through the Energy Department’s Better Buildings Case Competition.

Now in its third year, the Better Buildings Case Competition challenges the next generation of engineers, entrepreneurs, and policymakers to devise actionable ways to cut energy waste and improve commercial building efficiency. Using real-world scenarios and data, university teams develop creative solutions for common energy-efficiency problems that private-sector organizations and state and local governments could replicate. To date, university teams have presented 66 energy efficiency solutions to more than 21 businesses, organizations, agencies, and governments.

But the case competition doesn’t just benefit the case partners. It helps students gain the skills necessary for a career in clean energy. For many students, it provides them with tangible experience, teaches them how to work as a team, and helps them bridge the gap between the classroom and industry. For the complete story, see the EERE Blog.