Campus Buzz

Six degrees of savings: Now that the temperatures are falling, it’s time to think winter energy savings. Here are energy conservation tips for the chilly months from Facilities Services:

Turn down that thermostat. Set it to the lowest comfortable setting, and turn it down a bit more when you leave your office. Facilites recommends thermostat settings of 68 degrees for occupied spaces and 65 degrees for unoccupied spaces. For every degree you lower your thermostat, Penn saves 5 percent on its energy costs.

Lights out. Turn off all lights, space heaters, computer monitors and office or lab equipment when you leave. Check with your local support provider before you turn off any computers, though.

Close the window, open the blinds. Keep doors and windows closed to minimize cold air leaks, and open the blinds or roll up the shades to maximize solar warming. Feel a draft? Call Facilities Services at 8-7208 to report leaky windows or doors.

Keep those vents clear. Remove any items blocking fan coils, radiators and forced-air vents.

Facilities Services will also shut down selected air handling units when buildings or areas the units serve are unoccupied. Call 215-898-7208 to let them know when a large area will be unoccupied.

Finally, if you feel uncomfortable, don’t assume it’s due to conservation measures—it might be the result of a malfunctioning climate control system. Call Facilities Services if you feel uncomfortably warm or cold and your thermostat is properly set.

Time to get shot: Flu season is fast approaching, and the best defense against the flu is a shot in the arm. The Division of Human Resources has once again arranged inexpensive flu shots for faculty and staff. Occupational Medicine will administer the shots at three convenient locations—the Engineering School, the School of Nursing and the Wharton School. All you need to bring is your registration confirmation, your PennCard and a $10 co-payment. Inoculations will be administered from 10:30 a.m. to 1:30 p.m. on Nov. 13, 17 and 18. Pre-registration is required; the deadline is Wednesday, Nov. 12. You can register and reserve a time slot online at www.hr.upenn.edu/quality/wellness/flushots.asp (PennKey required). If you do not have access to a computer, call Human Resources at 215-898-5116 to register.

Making book: A couple of interesting new books from Penn faculty recently came to our attention. In “Green Desire: Imagining Early Modern English Gardens” (Cornell, 2003), English Professor and College Dean Rebecca Bushnell finds tools for sculpting the individual as well as nature in 19th-century English gardening books. And pianist-professor Guthrie Ramsey’s new book “Race Music: Black Cultures from Be-bop to Hip-Hop” (California, 2003) is an accessible survey of the ways black communities and families, including his own, shaped the music they and the world listened to from the 1940s to the 1990s.

Originally published on October 30, 2003