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Illini Lights Out (Ongoing)

Project History

  • 10/10/2021

    Illini Lights Out was relaunched for Fall 2021 and the first event was September 17, 2021. This event had a great turnout and was very successful!

  • 9/27/2021

    Campus Sustainability Month is right around the corner and we are very excited to invite you to a series of events throughout the entire month of October! Starting this week, Wednesday, September 29 at 6:00 PM, Dr.


Illini Lights Out engages student volunteers to turn lights out in key campus buildings, to conserve energy and raise awareness of the need to work together toward our energy conservation goals. This campaign addresses Objectives 2.2 and 2.2.2 of the Energy iCAP Team (Chapter 2 of iCAP) – to increase energy efficiency and reduce building-level energy.


During an Illini Lights Out event, small groups of students are assigned buildings to audit on or near the main Quad to turn off non-essential lights in classrooms/bathrooms not in use. Conducting these light audits is a simple, fun and interactive way of engaging students with energy conservation while raising awareness of energy usage as it relates to climate change. Initiating a year-round light auditing program gets students involved in increasing energy efficiency and reducing building-level energy for the duration of the academic year. Energy, emissions, and dollars saved can easily be calculated using the data volunteers record.

A one-time initial pilot of Illini Lights Out was conducted by ECBS SWATeam members on April 15, 2016. A total of 1,533 lights were switched off during this event in 8 campus classroom buildings. In addition, volunteers closed 71 windows that had been left open. The SWATeam estimates that this one effort alone resulted in approximately $250-300 in energy savings for the campus. In 2016-17, the Student Sustainability Committee awarded funding for a year-long run of monthly Illini Lights Out events.

Illini Lights Out was relaunched for Fall 2021 after a hiatus due to the Covid-19 pandemic.

Project Team

  • Project Leader:

    Jenna Schaefer

    Team Members:

    • Meredith Moore


  • Proposed March 4, 2016
    Proposed by ECBS SWATeam members
    Investigated April 15, 2016
    Investigated by ECBS SWATeam members
    Approved October 21, 2016
    Approved by Student Sustainability Committee
    Started November 17, 2016
    Started by Alex Dzurick