The Michigan Engineer News Center

CEE grad students win Dow awards

Three CEE Doctoral students receive the Dow Distinguished Awards for Sustainability| Short Read

Doctoral students Derya Ayral, Devki Desai and Emily Herbert are on the Living Building Challenge team, which was one of four teams recently selected to receive Dow Distinguished Awards for Sustainability.

“As part of the Dow Sustainability Fellows program, the Distinguished Awards are intended to spur multidisciplinary collaborations that seek to develop sustainability solutions on local to global scales,” said Don Scavia, director of the Graham Sustainability Institute, which administers the program on behalf of the university.

The Living Building Challenge team is overseeing the retrofit of a 112-year-old house in Ann Arbor so the home will meet parameters of what’s called a “Living Building,” meaning that it is self-sufficient and self-sustaining in energy needs and water resources.

The group is leading the design of a zero-waste portable rainwater harvesting system, with on-site reclamation and treatment. The students are also seeking to qualify the site for certification under the Living Building Challenge by allowing the home to leave a net-zero impact on the site’s water cycle, an undertaking never before attempted on a single-family house.

To learn more about Dow Distinguished Awards for Sustainability, please click here.

Jessica Petras


Jessica Petras
Marketing Communications Specialist

Department of Civil and Environmental Engineering

(734) 764-9876

GG Brown 2105E

The outside of the Ford Robotics building

U-Michigan, Ford open world-class robotics complex

The facility will accelerate the future of advanced and more equitable robotics and mobility | Medium Read