A competition for UCF students who live on campus will teach them not to underestimate the energy-saving impact of simple steps such as turning off lights and unplugging electronic devices when leaving the room.

The Kill-A-Watt competition is an energy conservation contest for students who live in UCF’s residence halls. The competition provides students with guidance on how to use energy more efficiently and awards scholarships to students who take big steps in reducing their personal energy consumptions.

Kill-A-Watt, now in its sixth year, is led by the Department of Sustainability & Energy Management and UCF Housing and Residence Life. Though the competition’s name, rules and incentives have been revised over the years, the exponential growth in energy savings has been consistent.

In fact, the competition has led to an estimated $146,765 in energy savings since 2007.

Beginning this week, students who live on campus are invited to work together to reduce the energy consumption of their residence halls.

Buildings have been separated into five different groups according to size. For example, Group 5 is comprised of all four buildings within the Towers at Knights Plaza, UCF’s largest housing community.

Residents of buildings within a particular group will compete against each other to achieve the greatest energy reduction and make their building the best performing in its group.

At the end of the competition, students living in the best performing building will become eligible for the $750 grand prize scholarship. Eligible students will be asked to write an essay or record a video that explains the steps he or she took to save energy.

Additional scholarships in denominations of $350 and $100 will be awarded to 10 students from other buildings that achieve at least a 20 percent reduction in energy.

To learn more about the Kill-A-Watt competition and UCF’s sustainability efforts, go to http://sustainable.ucf.edu.