JMU Team Wins Prize in National Renewable Energy Competition

by Stephen Briggs

Management students compete in National Wind Energy Competition - 2018

SUMMARY: A multi-disciplinary student team headed to Chicago in May to participate in the U.S. Department of Energy-sponsored Collegiate Wind Competition, edging out Northern Arizona University to win the top business plan prize.

Thirty motivated students from ISAT, Engineering, and the College of Business (CoB) combined their skills to plan and execute a wind-oriented energy project for the third biennial Collegiate Wind Competition. The event featured four categories: business plan, technical design, siting, and comprehensive.

The two-semester process began in Fall 2017, where the students gathered in ISAT/ENG 480 to study sustainable energy and develop ideas for the wind energy project. In Spring 2018 they worked in MGT 472 to narrow down their six ideas into the one deemed the most viable from both an engineering and a marketing point of view. They settled on “Neighboring Winds,” a project designed to provide new housing communities a renewable energy source at a competitive price.

From there, they developed and polished a strong business plan and began work on the smaller scale-model prototype.

Multi-disciplinary team takes prize at Wind Energy Competition - 2018Several faculty were involved, but Dr. C.K. Lee (CoB), Dr. Jonathon Miles (ISAT) and Dr. Keith Holland (ENG) headed up the initiative. Dr. Lee, in his first year as a professor at JMU, was impressed with the students’ enthusiasm for the project. “I am very proud of our students who represented JMU in Chicago this May,” Lee said, adding, “I am impressed with their endless passion and hard work on the project. All 30 students on our team deserve credit for their amazing work this year.” He also noted that faculty from management, engineering and ISAT helped by acting as judges for the internal competitions leading up to the event.

Lee continued, “The knowledge and skills we have at the CoB added value to this project. ISAT and Engineering students learned how to write a business plan, and Management students learned about technology. The wind industry is growing and participating in this competition gave them a great opportunity to get experience and engage with people who make wind energy.”

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Published: Friday, May 25, 2018

Last Updated: Thursday, January 23, 2020

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