A group of Georgia Institute of Technology undergraduate students that included two from the Ivan Allen College of Liberal Arts won the JUMP into STEM finalist competition on Jan. 31, 2020 at Oak Ridge National Laboratory in Oak Ridge, Tennessee.
The five-student team from Georgia Tech presented their project on data science and sustainable energy practices, “Behavioral Incentives on Children and their Parents to Reduce Energy Consumption.” The project drew from both social science and data science disciplines in its ideas, which included incorporating smart building sensors and gamification to encourage conservation.
The members of the team were:
- Katie Earles (Public Policy)
- Catherine Moore (Public Policy)
- Steven Leone (Computer Science)
- Kira O’Hare (Industrial and Systems Engineering)
- Taylor Sparacello (Mechanical Engineering)
The finalist competition was the culmination of a process that began in August, and the field of competitors was announced in December. The Georgia Tech students competed against teams from Tennessee State University, the University of Michigan, Carnegie Mellon University, the University of California-Berkeley, Hampton University and Clark Atlanta University.
The project team was mentored by School of Public Policy Assistant Professor Omar Asensio, who is also a faculty affiliate at the Institute for Data Engineering & Science (IDEaS).
“The team identified an important untapped source for energy conservation—households with children,” Asensio said. “Although it may not be immediately obvious, households with children can consume up to 25% more energy nationally and hence this is an important population to target low-cost innovations for energy efficiency.
It is truly a multidisciplinary approach with students from three Colleges at Georgia Tech: Ivan Allen, Computing and Engineering. The competition was strong this year, but the multidisciplinary effort from our Georgia Tech students was rewarded by the team of building scientists. The JUMP into STEM competition is a wonderful way to inspire students to consider energy and building technologies as a possible career path."
This is the second year in a row that Georgia Tech students have won the competition, which is a collaborative effort of Oak Ridge National Laboratory, the National Renewable Energy Laboratory and the Department of Energy. For winning the competition, the students will be offered internships with the Department of Energy at one of its national labs.
The School of Public Policy is a unit of the Georgia Tech Ivan Allen College of Liberal Arts.