Senior Heads West for Environmental Internship

Created: November 30, 2016
Last Updated: July 10, 2020

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WASHINGTON, PA (Nov. 30, 2016) – Hailing from the Bay Area, Washington & Jefferson College (W&J) senior Patrick Fredrick knew it would be an incredible opportunity to head back west to San Francisco, one of the most energetic and tech-savvy cities in the United States, for a summer internship. The environmental studies major earned a position as a marketing and outreach intern with the San Francisco Department of Environment’s (SFE) Energy Watch Program.

As one of the largest and most proactive environmental departments across the country, Patrick gained valuable experience at SFE, which addresses issues ranging from energy and climate to environmental justice, green building, toxics reduction, transportation, and zero waste.

“SFE has become a creative center for many revolutionary environmental initiatives,” Patrick said, as part of their mission to make San Francisco 100 percent renewable. Founded in 2008, the Energy Watch Program is one of those initiatives. The Program aims to help upgrade commercial and residential buildings to energy efficient technology by providing incentives and services to make the transition easy and accessible for individuals, companies, and organizations.

Working with the energy efficiency marketing outreach coordinator, Gabriella Canez, Patrick worked to reduce energy consumption and lower the environmental footprint throughout the city. Through phone calls, emails, tabling events, and street canvassing, Patrick reached out to office and residential buildings in the area to educate them on the incentives and advantages of becoming more energy efficient, including LED lighting and heating, ventilation, and air-conditioning (HVAC) upgrades, which would not only help the city’s energy efficiency objectives but would save the building owners money on their energy bills. He then set goals for which outreach efforts would lead to energy efficiency upgrade projects.

Reflecting on his experience this summer, Patrick said it has motivated him to look for future careers in a similar field where he can continue tackling pressing environmental issues.

“My time spent as a marketing and outreach intern helped me gain valuable experience engaging with people, communities, and companies in the city of San Francisco, enabling them to become more sustainable and efficient,” Patrick said. “I learned about the many factors and difficulties that influence implementing green initiatives and how to overcome different environmental issues in a time where pressure and strain has never been so high.”

About Washington & Jefferson College

Washington & Jefferson College, located in Washington, Pa., is a selective liberal arts college founded in 1781. Committed to providing each of its students with the highest-quality undergraduate education available, W&J offers a traditional arts and sciences curriculum emphasizing interdisciplinary study and independent study work. For more information about W&J, visit www.washjeff.edu, or call 888-W-AND-JAY.

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