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‘Tis the Season…al Shutdown Office Challenge!

December 6, 2019

Portage Campus Staff with the Seasonal Shutdown Office Challenge poster at their catered coffee break.

The Portage Campus was one of the winning offices in 2018.

The December break is fast approaching but before you flip the switch to holiday mode, don’t forget to flip the off switches at the office and give our College’s electronic equipment and appliances a much-needed break too.

Red River College will be closed from December 24 at noon to January 2. During this time our buildings will go into “Un-Occupied Mode” which means lower temperatures, and less energy consumption. But we need your help! By participating in the Seasonal Shutdown Office Challenge your actions will help reduce the environmental and financial impacts of our energy use this break. Plus… by participating you could win a catered coffee break for your office (find out how to enter below).

Help us make sure that Rudolph’s nose is the only thing shining over RRC this holiday season with these three simple steps:

Red checkmark in a box

Remove perishables and clean fridges by December 24, 2019

Note: Offices at NDC will not be cleaned during the break. Please place all garbage in the hallways by 11 am on Dec 24th to make sure it is picked up before the the campus is closed.

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Where it is safe and possible to do so. Please leave printers ON, they’ll go into energy saving mode on their own.

Red checkmark in a box

Take the Seasonal Shutdown Office Challenge and Win!

Library staffing around a boardroom table holding up their reusable coffee mugs.

The Library was one of the winning offices in 2018.

Before you dash away into the night this holiday, recruit your colleagues to participate in the Seasonal Shutdown Office Challenge. We’ve made a list and checked it twice, all you have to do is fill it out and shutdown unnecessary lights and equipment before you leave for the break and you will be entered to win 1 of 3 catered coffee breaks for your office!

Complete the Checklist Here


  • What is an office? An office can be one person or multiple people in one office space, or across many offices, as long as you are in the same department. You can even challenge other offices within your department to participate as well. Please have just one person per office complete the checklist.
  • When can I fill in the form? You can submit the form before December 24 as a pledge to do these actions. Anyone who submits a form before December 23 will receive a reminder email on December 24. You can also fill out the form anytime between December 24 and noon on January 3, 2019.
  • Having trouble with the form? Contact Whitney for help.
  • The more, the merrier! Recruit participants and help conserve energy at the College by printing and posting Seasonal Shutdown downloadable poster in an office common area.


Institutional Analyis and Planning Staff in their office with the Seasonal Shutdown poster

Institutional Analysis and Planning was one of the winning offices in 2018.

You might think that the few items in your office aren’t going to make much of a difference if they’re shutdown or unplugged for 11 days, but consider this: in the 2018 College-wide plug load inventory of more than 500 staff offices and common areas,  we counted nearly 3,000 personal electronic items (i.e. computers, monitors, speakers, etc.), almost 600 personal appliances (refrigerators, microwaves, etc.), and over 450 lightswitches. That’s a lot of potential for unnecessary energy consumption, either through leaving items and lights on, or through standby (phantom) power that many electronic items draw even when turned off.


  • Lab equipment: Together with your colleagues identify equipment that can be safely turned off, unplugged, or placed in standby mode over the break.
  • Don’t forget to turn off lights and shutdown projectors and AV equipment in any meeting rooms or classrooms that you use.
  • Do a department walk-through to ensure valuables are secured and cabinets are locked.
  • Activate alarms if applicable before you leave.
  • Set yourself a reminder in your calendar or on your phone (or even on a sticky note on the door) to remember to do your seasonal shutdown checklist before you leave.
  • Set yourself a reminder for when you return from holidays to plug needed items in or turn them on.
  • Don’t forget to water plants and feed and water vermicomposting worms!