Bursting with Energy

Hastings Secondary College Year 7 Zenith Students were bursting with ‘ENERGY’ as they came together in teams in the last week of term to work exclusively on an extension enrichment activity.

Our student teams were asked to analyse existing energy sources and costs within the school and develop and design a prototype for a more sustainable energy solution that could be implemented in an area of their choice across each campus. 

The task included model building, computer-animated CAD drawings, multimedia software and a sales pitch, where they promoted their concept in a 3-minute persuasive presentation to a panel of ‘experts.’

The projects were judged by representatives from local energy supplier Essential Energy, Charles Sturt University, and our college Executive Principal.

The winning projects will be presented to the parent bodies for funding and potential implementation in 2019.

The winning Team for Port Macquarie Campus comprised of Rusie Southon, Hayley and Alarna Brennan, Matilda Harvey, Chloe Eldridge and  Kirra Morris. The group decided to put skylights and LED lights in the top of A block at the campus to make a long dark corridor more energy efficient and to improve the ambience of the area by making it brighter and more welcoming. 

Following this, they will look at other areas within the school where they could also replace 'old lighting' with more cost-effective LED lights and natural lighting.

The winning Westport Campus team created a prototype bicycle generator capable of recharging one or two mobile phone devices simultaneously. In this way students would exercise by pedalling bike generators during their lunch breaks to recharge their phones.

If their project is implemented in 2019, the team would like to host regular competitions to encourage student and staff participation. The students who developed this fabulous project were Shenoa Chisnall, Millie Davies, Erin Simpson, Milly Dunbar and Savannah Medcalf.

The Judges award went to Jodie Barber, Naomi Harris, Kate Collins, Heath Pritchard, Violet James, Aralyn Martin and Katalina Dixon. This team had an idea of introducing 'Earth Hour' ay the Campus once a term. 

All lights and non-essential electrical devises would be turned off and during this time, students and teachers would walk around the campus to use their energy to keep fit. 

They would also like to roll this idea out to other schools in the community to raise awareness of energy use and looking towards sustainable options.

The teams look forward to presenting their prototypes to the broader community at the Hastings Sustainability Showcase. The showcase will educate, inform and inspire people and businesses about the latest ideas, products and trends in sustainability. The primary aim of the showcase and expo is to educate people and to facilitate interaction between all with interest in sustainability, which is key to improving the environmental health and economic growth of our beautiful region.

Charles Sturt University is supporting the event. The event is aimed at generating a community-wide discussion about sustainability, how we improve our lives and the environment in which we live and pass the latter on to future generations. The March 1 and 2 event, organised by the Port Macquarie Hastings Sustainability Network, is at the Port Macquarie Racecourse.