4,524 Undergrads

11 Dorms

2 Winners

1 Dorm Electricity Competition

▼ scroll to learn more about the 2017 competition ▼
Current Standings

Electricity Competition:

Data will be updated weekly once the competition begins in March 2017

Spirit Point Competition:

Data updated in real time!

*Scores are calculated in points per capita

    No population data available for:
    Email ua-sustainability-dec@mit.edu with the number of residents in your FSILG!

There are two separate scores being tracked:

Electricity Useage: Only Dorms

The Electricity competition will be based on each dorm's percent energy reduction during the competition. We will be comparing each dorm's electricity useage to its own useage in previous months. Weekly electricity data will be reflected in the "Current Standings" section, and will be sent out in our weekly competition email. See below for more information on how to save electricity!

Spirit Points: Dorms, FSILGs, and individuals

The Spirit competition will be based on each living group's total number of spirit points earned by its residents. This score will be normalized to the number of residents in the living group. Spirit points can be earned from February 28 through March 30. See below for more information on how to earn spirit points!

Don't live in a dorm or an FSILG? You can still compete! Individual students' spirit point totals will also be tracked. Your chances of getting a raffle prize increase with your spirit point total.

*Note: If you are a member of an FSILG but don't currently live there, your points will not count towards their total.

Reduce Your Usage

There are a lot of small ways to save electricity, and they all add up to make a difference. Here are some ideas below of ways that you can help your dorm to win, as well as developing sustainable habits for your daily life.

    Personal Appliances & Technology
  • Don’t use screen savers *
  • Choose compact fluorescent or LEDs lights
  • Unplug chargers and desk lights when not in use (be aware of vampire energy) *
  • Plug appliances into a power strip and turn it off when not in use *
  • Turn off personal fridges and use communal ones instead *
  • Consider replacing old fridges with new, energy-efficient models *
  • Place lamps in corners to reflect light from two walls
  • Use blackle.com (Google with a black background)
  • Set computer sleep mode to ten minutes or less
  • Turn lights off when you leave the room *
  • Study in common areas to save on lighting power
  • Do not charge electronics overnight

  • Temperature Control
  • Raise thermostat slowly when heating a room rather than quickly all at once
  • Use window blinds during spring and summer to keep cool
  • Wear layers rather than turning up the heat
  • Avoid using space heaters
  • Turn off your thermostat when you go on vacation

  • Personal Fitness
  • Run outside instead of on treadmills
  • Use ellipticals or stationary bikes instead of treadmills
  • Take the stairs rather than the elevator
  • Walk or ride a bike to get to class

  • Laundry
  • Hang clothes to dry on a clothesline instead of in the dryer
  • Clean the lint screen on your dryer to be 30% more efficient
  • Only use hot water for especially dirty laundry

  • Food and Cooking
  • Choose to microwave over using the oven
  • Thaw frozen food in the refrigerator
  • Do not use pans smaller than the size of the burner below
  • Keep lids on pots to reduce cooking time and save energy
  • Keep your freezer full (fill it with gallons of water if needed)

  • Reduce meat consumption ie. meatless mondays
  • Eat sustainable seafood
  • Choose compostables when using disposable dishware
  • Use less dishes in dining to save water and washing energy

  • Water Usage
  • Wash clothes in cold water
  • Take shorter and/or colder showers
  • Ensure faucets are completely shut off when not in use

  • Reuse and Reduce Waste
  • Use reusable grocery bags when shopping
  • Invest in a reusable water bottle to replace plastic bottles
  • Print paper double sided
  • Reuse old homework as scratch paper
Spirit Points

What are spirit points?

Spirit points are a way for you to show that you're being sustainable outside of reducing electricity usage. We keep track of how many spirit points you earn from February 28 to March 30, and your total will contribute to your dorm/FSILG's spirit point total, as well as increase your chances of winning a raffle prize.

Why should I earn spirit points?

You should earn spirit points because you can get awesome prizes! And help your dorm win money. Aside from material and monetary incentives, we also think that spirit points are a great way to make being sustainable fun and exciting.

How do I earn spirit points?

Luckily, there are a lot of ways to earn spirit points.

  • Attend DEC Events: You will receive 5 spirit points for every DEC sponsored event that you attend.

  • Submit a proposal: Have an idea on how to make your dorm more sustainable? Email a description of your idea to ua-sustainability-dec@mit.edu and we'll award you 5-10 points based on the content and level of detail. If your idea is feasible and well thought out, it may be implemented in the winning dorm!

  • Write a blog post: If you write a blog post related to sustainability and submit it to us here, then you will be awarded 5-10 spirit points depending on the length and content. Some examples of topics you could write about are why sustainability matters to you and sustainability in your daily life. Really, though, any topic is great as long as it's related to sustainability! Personal anecdotes, opinion pieces, poems - send them all!

  • Take a picture: Send us a picture of yourself doing something sustainable, and we'll award you 1-5 points depending on the level of sustainability and creativity! (For example, spending a day at a Charles River cleanup would earn a 5.) All pictures will be posted on this site. Examples of things we've received in the past are:

    • Taking the stairs
    • Filling a reuseable water bottle
    • Composting
    • Planting something in your room
    • Picking up litter
    • Bringing a reusable bag to the store

    To submit photos, upload it to our site here
  • Grand Prize: Electricity Saving Dorm

    • Funding will be awarded for the implementation of a project in the winning dorm that either makes the dorm more sustainable or increases the sustainability of the lifestyles of the dorm's residents
    • Project will be proposed by the residents of the winning dorm and approved by the UA Committee on Sustainability
    • Awarded to the dorm with the largest decrease in electricity useage during the competition
    • Eligible winners: Any of the 11 MIT undergraduate dorms

  • Spirit Points Prize

    • Funding will be awarded for the implementation of a smaller sustainable project for the residents of the winning living group
    • Project proposed by the residents of the winning living group and approved by the UA Committee on Sustainability
    • Awarded to the living group that earns the most spirit points per person
    • Eligible winners: Any MIT undergraduate subdorm or recognized FSILG

  • Individual Prizes

    • Participate in our events to win raffle prizes and other mini-competition awards
    • Winners will be announced at the finale on March 22; you must be present to claim your prize
    • Eligible winners: Any undergraduate who earns spirit points during the competition

  • Monday 2/27: Kickoff 7:30-9:00pm, Lobby 10
    Come get free food, DEC swag, and the opportunity to have your voice heard on why sustainability matters to you. Also featured: music, sustainability pledges, more information about the competition, and tips on how to live sustainably.

  • Saturday 3/18 : Green Building Challenge 2:00-5:00pm, Bldg 54 (Meet in 54-100)
    Previously a "Bad Idea", the Green Building Challenge has now been adopted as a way to promote both physical fitness and sustainability. Come climb all 19 floors to win points for your dorm, burn some calories, and have fun with friends. One time not enough for you? Feel free to climb to the top multiple times to win even more points!

  • Wednesday 3/22: Finale Time TBD, 3-270
    Did your dorm do enough? Did you save enough electricity? Did you climb the Green Building enough times? During the finale, all of your questions will be answered and prizes will be awarded! The Grand Prize and Spirit Prize winners will be announced, and individual raffle prizes will be given out.
Photo Gallery
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The Dorm Electricity Competition was founded in 2006 by Tim Grejtak ‘11 in order to increase awareness of the importance of saving energy while developing strong energy-saving habits among students. After a three-year hiatus, the competition was brough back by the UA Committee on Sustainability, and we kicked off the competition in spring of 2013 with a Chipotle study break. The undergraduate dorms saved over 29,500 kWh over the month of April! DEC is now an annual competition during one month of the spring semester, and will be happening for the 5th consecutive year this March.

Past Grand Electricity Prize Winners:

  • 2016: New House
  • 2015: Simmons
  • 2014: Baker
  • 2013: East Campus
  • 2008: Baker
  • 2007: McCormick

Past Spirit Prize Winners:

  • 2016: Women’s Independent Living Group (WILG)

DEC Project Leader: Stephanie Chin

DEC Committee Members: Brandon Baraban, Avital Baral, Milani Chatterji-Len, Valerie Hunter, Jordyn Mann, Athena Ortega, Tina Pavlovich, Anya Quenon, Zach Schmitz, Mingshi Yang, and Sherry Zhou

UA Sustainability Chairs: Kathy Camenzind and Yanisa Techagumthorn


MIT Office of Sustainability

MIT Campus Activites Complex

Competition Preview
Contact Us

Email us at ua-sustainability-dec@mit.edu or fill out the form below with any questions, comments, or suggestions!

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