• Green Awards and Grants

    Lewis and Clark’s innovative sustainability efforts have garnered a lot of attention across the state and nation earning the college numerous grants, contracts and awards, including the inaugural U.S. Water Prize and the Illinois Governor’s Gold Level Sustainability Awards.


    Two-time Governor's Sustainability Award Recipient

    Lewis and Clark was the only community college to be honored with the 2013 Governor’s Sustainability Award, presented by the Illinois Sustainable Technology Center (ISTC).

    After earning the award in 2011, Lewis and Clark has continued to make aggressive strides toward its lofty goal of campus carbon neutrality in 2058.

    Gold-Level Compact School

    Governor Quinn and the Green Governments Coordinating Council (GGCC) recognized Lewis and Clark as a Gold Level Compact School within the Illinois Campus Sustainability Compact program in Fall 2012.

    Gold level recognition is given to schools that have signed the Illinois Governor’s Sustainability Compact, successfully engaged their campus community in sustainability initiatives, made a commitment to greening operations and continue to make measurable progress toward improvement.

    St. Louis Regional Chamber and Growth Association Circle of Achievement Award Recipient

    For the last several years, the college has participated in the St. Louis Regional Chamber and Growth Association’s (RCGA) Green Business Challenge, a points-based checklist that provides a space for businesses and other institutions to improve upon baseline sustainability scores on a yearly basis.

    Each spring, the Office of Sustainability counts up the number of sustainability “points” L&C will start with based on what has already been accomplished, and then the college spends six months trying to improve upon that points total by implementing new sustainability action items.

    In 2013, as in years past, the college improved upon its score, earning the Circle of Achievement Award. L&C started 2013 with 107 points, and ended with 124 points. Progress in waste reduction, hosting community e-waste drives, and the installation of sustainability dashboards all added to L&C’s growing point total.


    Lewis and Clark is an original member of the Illinois Green Economy Network (IGEN), which began in 2008 as a consortium of Illinois Community Colleges that work together to pursue sustainability strategies, with the idea that there is power in numbers.

    The colleges combine forces to apply for grants and to purchase renewable energy and other equipment. IGEN has funded a number of L&C green activities that have helped to further solidify the campus as a leader in the green movement.

    Former L&C Interim President and Vice President of Administration Lori Artis is proud to serve on the IGEN President’s Steering Committee.

    Trade Adjustment Act Grants

    In 2011, L&C worked with 17 IGEN schools to apply for and eventually receive a three-year Department of Labor Grant from the Trade Adjustment Act Community College Training Program in the amount of $19 million to create 31 online blended and hybrid degree and certificate programs in green career fields to train the green workforce of tomorrow.

    As a consortium member, L&C received $697,000 to create the Stormwater Management certificate, the Smart Grid Technology certificate, and to purchase and install the latest in technology associated with those two programs.

    In 2013, L&C received the last pieces of equipment from that grant. In total, the college was able to purchase a smart grid trainer, a wind and solar trainer, a GIS plotter printer and a host of home efficiency and auditing tools.

    Fuel Cell Trainer

    As part of IGEN’s Smart Grid funding initiative, the college was awarded $50,000 to add to its Smart Grid training capabilities with the purchase of a fuel cell trainer. Not only will the fuel cell trainer enhance our Smart Grid training capabilities; it will also be a perfect complement for the 5kW fuel cell that was recently donated to the college by Ameren Corporation. With this new piece of equipment, students will learn hands-on how a fuel cell trainer functions, and will have the opportunity to see a real-world application of the technology just outside the Hatheway Cultural Center.

    Solar Panel Grant

    In 2013, L&C received a $168,000 grant for the purchase and installation of solar thin film panels on the roof of the Trimpe Advanced Technology Center and two tracking solar panels in the yard next to Trimpe.

    The thin film installation has an installed capacity of 42kW, which has the potential to generate more than 50,000 kWh per year. The “tracker” units in the yard are designed to mechanically turn to follow the path charted by the sun across the sky. One is made of polycrystalline solar cells and the other is made of higher efficiency monocrystalline solar cells.

    Combined, the trackers have an installed capacity of 12kW, which has the potential to generate nearly 20,000 kWh per year.

    Together, the Trimpe solar installation represents both a commitment to reduce energy consumption, but also an investment in the green workforce and economy of the future.