BRUCE UNDERWOODMr. Bruce Underwood, the Chapter’s second Green Schools Research Fellow in Education, was hired in May 2014 to continue Ms. Davis’s research. He just earned his Masters of Environmental Studies at Ohio University, where his thesis focused on the assessment of teacher and principal attitudes towards environmental education in the Logan-Hocking School District in southeastern Ohio. Mr. Underwood will add data from the 2013-2014 school year to Ms. Davis’s dataset, and will seek to understand if there is an association between educational outcomes and attainment of LEED credits in specific credit categories, such as indoor environmental quality. He is also planning to expand Ms. Davis’s analysis to include schools that were certified under both LEED v2007 and v2009.
KATRINA STAKERStarting this fall, Ms. Katrina Staker will begin her role with the USGBC Central Ohio Chapter as the inaugural Green Schools Research Fellow for Energy. Katrina is finishing a Master's degree in Renewable and Clean Energy at the University of Dayton. With guidance from her mentor, Dr. Kevin Hallinan, Director of UD’s Building Energy Center, Ms. Staker will be working to see if Ohio’s LEED schools conserve energy compared to traditionally designed and constructed schools, and to quantify the financial benefit (if any) that such conservation conveys.
USGBC Central Ohio Chapter Investigates Relationship Between Educational Performance and LEED
What if sustainably built schools were not only good for the environment, but also for students, and ultimately, communities?
With the goal of quantifying the advantages of green building practices, the U.S. Green Building Council Central Ohio Chapter is working with Battelle to investigate the effect of Leadership in Energy and Environmental Design (LEED) certification on educational outcomes.
"We want to quantify the value of LEED, and one way to do that is to look at how building occupants perform in green buildings," said Ian MacGregor, Director of Research Programs at the USGBC Central Ohio Chapter. "The whole idea is to try and quantify the benefit, ultimately in dollars and cents."
The Central Ohio USGBC Chapter has been awarded the 2014 Malcolm Lewis IMPACT! grant to continue this research, which began in January 2013, led by the Chapter’s first Green Schools Research Fellow, Shanell Davis, a graduate student at the Ohio State University. The Chapter recently hired Battelle researchers to examine educational outcomes in Ohio's more than 130 LEED-certified schools, focusing specifically on student test scores, student and teacher attendance, and rates of disciplinary actions.
In addition to Battelle, the Chapter is looking to partner with University of Dayton and Otterbein, and to hire new Research Fellows in Education and Energy in the next month.
MacGregor said he expects results from the study in the summer. The research will eventually be made available to public policy makers, both on a state and national level.
The Chapter is also exploring opportunities with organizations like the Ohio Public Health Association for future phases of the research, Chapter Board Chair Jeremy Cohen said.
"Green building has such broad reaching impacts, and we are excited to see the research process reflect that," he said.
The Chapter is eager to get started on the future phases of this research, which they hope will show the far-reaching impacts of green buildings.