Meet Lauren Excell

Lauren Excell is a sophomore majoring in Environmental Engineering and a member of iSEE’s Water and Stormwater SWATeam.

As a new member, Lauren has high hopes for what the SWATeam team can accomplish on campus.

“This school has a lot of great minds that come together to create innovative solutions, and there are people here that genuinely care about the issues we are trying to solve,” she said. “I hope that before my time on the SWATeam is done we will have established greywater* use systems in buildings on campus and have laid a framework for others to do the same.”

Beyond campus water solutions, she recognizes the value of a sustainable campus as a whole — with hopes that the University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign will someday become an example of sustainability to other colleges in the country.

“The University of Illinois campus is home to nearly 44,000 students, and these students will shape the future of society. It’s important to show them that sustainability is a worthwhile change to their lifestyle so that they can carry on with sustainable habits in the future,” she said.

Lauren plans to spend her time on the team making a difference on campus while also encouraging others to lead a more sustainable lifestyle.

“The most rewarding part of being on this team is knowing that I’m part of something bigger than just my classes, and all of the work that I put in can make a real change on campus.” she said. “My wish would be for people to realize how easy it can be to live a sustainable lifestyle.

“Instead of printing class materials, do more work online. Spend less time in the shower, don’t run the water while you brush your teeth, unplug your phone charger when you don’t use it, use a reusable water bottle, the list goes on. The little things add up. Sustainability isn’t just for tree huggers; we share one Earth, and taking care of it benefits us all!”

In her free time, Lauren enjoys traveling and studying astronomy. You can find her around campus checking out the views on the fourth floor of Grainger Library.


* Greywater is water that has been used already for one purpose in the building and gets recirculated for a second use. For example, hand washing water – which is “dirty” but not toxic – could be used as toilet-flush water rather than water fit for drinking.


Return to the Land & Water SWATeam page