Illumination and inspiration: Energy Focus reflects on GSCE 2016

Published on: 
27 Apr 2016
Faye Gao

Earlier this month, the Energy Focus team had the unique opportunity to participate in the Green Schools Conference and Expo (GSCE). We were proud to be a Leader Sponsor of the event, but we were even more proud to have the chance to connect with the teachers, school administrators and nonprofit leaders who are so dedicated to providing healthy, safe, and efficient schools for our children. 

Eric Hilliard, Energy Focus’ President and COO, provided greetings to attendees at the opening general session. “Our company, Energy Focus, possesses a core belief that the lighting conditions that exist in our schools must be improved,” Eric said. “For us, it’s not just an opportunity, it’s a responsibility. Though lighting is just one part of the equation, it is a powerful solution for reducing energy consumption and enhancing the quality of the educational environment for teachers and students.” 

Last year, we launched the “Change a Light, Change a Life” initiative, which provides a lighting retrofit to one special-needs classroom per school, free of cost. Our company has provided LED lighting upgrades to more than 30 schools through the initiative, which applies our research about the impact of lighting on focus and attention to enhance children’s’ learning environments. LED lighting eliminates photometric energy spikes associated with fluorescent lamps that affects individuals with Irlen Syndrome, otherwise known as scoptoic sensitivity syndrome. Full-spectrum LED lighting also enhances the color visible to the human eye, resulting in schools and classrooms that are brighter and clearer.  

One of our favorite installations was done during the 2015 Green Apple Day of Service flagship event at Leckie Elementary School in Washington, D.C. During his remarks, Eric shared with attendees a short video that captured USGBC and Energy Focus hard at work with neighborhood volunteers at Leckie Elementary. Together, we retrofitted three special-needs classrooms and three modular classrooms with LED lighting. 

When we heard that Leckie’s Principal, Atasha James, was serving as a Master Speaker at GSCE, we were excited to sponsor her session and introduce her. Principal James spoke about the value that sustainability initiatives have brought to her school community and discussed approaches to a sustainable "green" mindset for future generations. We at Energy Focus are so pleased to be a part of the transformation she is leading. 

We look forward to supporting the ongoing transformation of our schools with the Center for Green Schools, and we look forward to sharing more impactful stories with you at the next GSCE.