In spring 2022, through the generous support from the Illinois Green Economy Network, Rend Lake College, purchased and installed three (3) solar workstations on main campus. These workstations provide renewable energy for charging multiple devices and assist in the illumination of campus facilities. The workstations were strategically placed in locations on campus where students frequently visit and interact with one another. The workstations provide students with an opportunity to participate in outdoor engagement with other students, staff, and campus visitors. They serve as an outdoor lounging area for campus which helps to create bonds between students and to enhance their sense of belonging on campus. More importantly, the workstations serve as a constant reminder to students, staff, and all campus visitors about the importance of utilizing renewable energy sources. These workstations provide all with a greater understanding of the power of sustainable energy sources and the need to seek out equipment and technologies which reduce the need to rely on non-renewable energy.
In addition to the improvement to the physical infrastructure, the college also used the installation of the workstations as a learning opportunity for its students. RLC recognizes the importance of educating students as to how to become involved in the future of sustainable energy and energy conservation. During the spring 2022 semester, students enrolled in various science courses learned how the solar panels generate energy and provide energy savings for the consumer. The workstations also provide a constant visual reminder as to how technology and awareness regarding a greener environment can positively impact future generations.