Clarkie of the Week: 10/09

Eli Goldman | Photo: Jonathan Edelman
Eli Goldman | Photo: Jonathan Edelman

Eli Goldman of Northampton, Massachusetts, is a junior Global Environmental Studies major. He enjoys exploring Worcester, making beats, eating well, and bringing good, affordable food to the community.

Scarlet: You just received a $400 grant from the U.S. Green Building Council’s Green Apple Day of Service Program. How did that come about and how will it affect the Clark Community?

Eli: The grant came about from my LEEP Project that I was doing this summer, working with Jenny Isler and Physical Plant. The broad topic was looking at ways to reduce energy consumption at Clark. So I audited pretty much every building on the campus, filling out work orders for Physical Plant that would improve energy efficiency, but in doing that, I realized that a lot of the things that I was taking note of weren’t things Physical Plant could fix, so trying to promote behavior change was the idea behind the calendars. So we think that using the calendars – they’re going out to all faculty and staff members – the idea is to target office spaces… that faculty and staff control, so the hope is that they’ll be able to reduce energy consumption by almost 25 percent by cutting down phantom loads and things like that at night and over the weekend.


Scarlet: What does the calendar include?

Eli: So each month has two things: there’s a checklist, which is more or less the same for each month, simple things like, make sure your window shades are closed, or unplug everything and turn off your office things; kind of like simple things you’d think that people would do normally, but don’t. And then also each month is a short little paragraph that has energy saving tips for that specific season. So in warmer months, it might be something like, [making] sure your AC unit is off. Or in the colder months, it might be, [making] sure the furniture in your office is situated in a way that you’re not blocking heating vents, so heat can come out and heat your office the way it should, so you don’t have to crank it up all the way. So those parts are tailored to the season, and then the checklist is more or less the same each month.


Scarlet: And you also run Local Root? What does that involve, and how is Local Root doing?

Eli: Yeah, I’m the co-manager. Local Root’s doing really well, we changed completely how we’re operating this semester. In the past, we’ve done CSA [Community Supported Agriculture]-style boxes and delivered them to students and faculty, but not that many people were signing up for that last semester, so we kind of thought, how can we change this up? So we decided, what if we still brought fresh produce to people but let them choose exactly what they wanted to buy and not have it be predetermined, like, okay we’re going to give you a box and you have no idea what’s in it, but you’re going to get it every week! We thought it would be cool to let people pick and choose, so we started just doing a mobile farm stand, so we bring the farm stand to different spots around campus and sell it to people like that. So as a manager, we decide what we’re going to buy each week and we price things out, and we try to keep things as affordable as possible, we market ourselves, yeah, it’s like we’re running a small business.


Scarlet: It’s cool that you were able to adjust to the Clark community’s needs, rather than continuing the CSA-style. I know sometimes with CSA’s people get really different things that they don’t even know how to use.

Eli: Yeah, we wanted to try to make it so people enjoyed it. That’s another part of what we do, we try and do an education aspect of it and show people that it’s really not impossible to eat well, and eat well without spending a lot of money.


Scarlet: And you also do Club Tennis and Ultimate Frisbee?

Eli: With Club Tennis, just this last weekend we were at [a] sectional tournament at Harvard, so every school in New England that has a club team was at the tournament, so we played a lot of tennis. We did alright, it was fun. And then for Ultimate, the exciting news is that we finally have access to fields at the Dolan; it’s exciting. We’ve been stuck playing behind Big Y and there’s like rocks and broken glass and who knows what out there, so it’s nice to be able to play on nice fields and be at Clark when you’re playing. Ultimate was always something that I played just kind of casually, throwing a disc with friends, but it’s a really fun sport. I think it has a different perception in the college atmosphere than other places, but it’s a real sport, it’s really active.


Scarlet: Is it also true that you make music?

Eli: Yeah. I grew up in a house with a lot of stringed instruments going around. My dad plays a lot of instruments, my sister played the violin and I played the cello when I was younger, and then I started listening to a lot of jazz and hip hop at the same time and wanted to make my own music, like pulling from both of those things, so I make music on my computer, I make beats and sample a lot of jazz and stuff like that. It’s a good hobby. For a while, I missed playing an instrument and then I started doing this stuff and it kind of filled that gap.


Scarlet: What do you like to do in your spare time?

Eli: I bike a lot, I do a lot of road biking. One of my favorite places to bike in Worcester, is if you go out into Holden, like out past the reservoir, especially at this time of year, all the leaves are changed, the roads are pretty calm. It’s nice to get out there and just kind of think, or not think, and just kind of blank out and go places.


Scarlet: Is there anything you’d like to add?

Eli: I’ll plug the Local Root and say that every Wednesday we do our farm stand in Red Square from 11-2:45, and we stop with our mobile market at the library, Jonas Clark, Jefferson/Geography, all along Woodland Street, and the administrative buildings.


Thanks for the interview, Eli!