The SUN Delegation is a program of the Solar Endowment project which is funded by the DOE Sunshot Initiative and managed by the Midwest Renewable Energy Association. The University partners other than the University of Minnesota are: Purdue, University of Illinois and the Missouri University of Science and Technology. At the University of Minnesota the project is being led by the Energy Transition Lab with the guidance of the Institute on the Environment.
The University of Minnesota SUN Delegation is made up of the 52 students from Duluth and Twin Cities campuses. SUN Delegation students include both undergraduate and graduate students interested in encouraging the University of Minnesota to invest in 1 MW of solar. Students come from a variety of academic backgrounds including
Participating students volunteer them time and have been working together in small groups since September to:
- Perform site assessments on UMN property to evaluate solar potential
- Develop financial models for solar at UMN
- Organize campus outreach efforts
- Develop detailed LiDar mapping of the Twin Cities campus
This past semester SUN Delegation students have gotten off to a strong start! SUN Delegation students participated in both the Association for the Advancement of Sustainability in Higher Education (AASHE) Student Summit and the Minnesota Solar Energy Industries Association (MNSEIA) Conference this past fall. In addition. the SUN Delegation has worked together to create a Campus PV Development Roadmap. Last November, SUN Delegation students traveled to the Natural Resources Research Laboratory (NREL) to present the Roadmap and learn more about the work being done by the lab.
Next semester Ellen Anderson and Professor Paul Imbertson have been approved to teach a three credit Grand Challenge Curriculum class called Renewable Energy Pathways that will be offered to Graduate students and Undergraduates on all of the U of MN campuses. It will use the Solar Endowment project as its hands-on, interdisciplinary action project this year. This course will allow any SUN delegates who can fit this class into their load to receive credit for participation.