Solar Panel Charging Station

PepsiCo Brings Outdoor Electronic Solar Charging Station to JU

Since Friday, Nov. 7, a blue, unusually stocky umbrella and picnic table combination has sat on the deck just outside of Chick-fil-A. A small sign clarifies its purpose, to use energy from the sun’s rays to recharge personal electronic devices.

The solar charging station, the first one on Jacksonville University’s campus, is an expression of PepsiCo’s stated ongoing sustainability initiative.

“We have a strong partnership with PepsiCo as an institution,” said Clayton Levins, presidential fellow. “They’re finding innovative ways to engage students with both their product and technology that is sustainable and forward-thinking. This is a wonderful expansion of our brand partnership and a true manifestation of PepsiCo’s dedication to what we’re trying to do on campus in becoming more sustainable.”

According to Levins, the station’s installation had to “move quickly” in advance of PepsiCo chief executive officer Indra Nooyi’s visit to JU on Thursday, Nov. 13. Levins said Nooyi appeared very excited, and the response of the JU community has been encouraging as well.

“I definitely think there’s positive feedback,” said Levins. “I think it still has to work its way into the culture, if you will, and the recent bad weather hasn’t helped.”

In test runs, however, Levins had no complaints.

“It works very well,” he said.