Penn State Brandywine recognized for new electric vehicle charging station

Two women hold up certificate at ceremony

Penn State Brandywine Director of Finance and Business Margaret Buban, left, receives a certificate of recognition from Delaware County Transportation Management Association Executive Director Tracy Barusevicius for Brandywine's installation of a new electric vehicle (EV) charging station. The charging station provides campus and local community EV drivers more options for recharging their vehicles at a cost effective rate.

Credit: Margaret Buban

MEDIA, Pa. — In acknowledgment of its new electric vehicle (EV) charging station, which is now open to the public, Penn State Brandywine has received a certificate of recognition from the Delaware County Transportation Management Association (DCTMA). Brandywine is located in Delaware County.

“The Brandywine campus is excited to make this equipment available to the community,” said Margaret Buban, director of finance and business at Brandywine. “We were very proud to accept the certificate of recognition at the DCTMA annual meeting earlier this month. I’m hoping we can use this acknowledgement as a catalyst to encourage other units at Penn State to advance EV charging station installations.”

EV charging stations are a critical part of the nation’s transition to a clean energy future to mitigate the challenges of climate change, according to Meghan Hoskins, director of operations and partnerships at the Penn State Sustainability Institute. She explained that electrifying the nation’s fleet of vehicles is only possible when there is widespread infrastructure to allow for vehicle charging. EV charging stations also contribute to Penn State’s decarbonization goals.

“When Meghan gave a presentation to all the campus directors of operations, I happened to be in a good place to start the process quickly,” Buban said.

Buban was able to order equipment and pay for it within 30 days. Clearing other hurdles —from hiring an engineering firm to designing the electrical pathways to finding the right electrical contractor — proved more challenging, Buban said.

“The Office of the Physical Plant was very supportive and removed a lot of the roadblocks,” Buban said. Buban also cited invaluable support from the Brandywine campus sustainability council and its maintenance team. “As finance officer, the motivation for me to take the suggestion back to the campus was the promise of rebates. We are awaiting rebates of $4,000 from PECO Energy Company, our electricity provider, along with $7,000 from Driving PA Forward [a program of the Pennsylvania Department of Environmental Protection]. The rebates almost cover the equipment cost.”

The project took about 10 months from concept to implementation, with the final turn-up and certification of the EV charging station occurring on April 9.

We’re now poised and ready to support the community’s sustainability efforts. I hope that others across Penn State will find the same benefit that our campus has in proceeding with the installation of these devices.

—Margaret Buban , Penn State Brandywine Director of Finance and Business

The Brandywine campus is located about two miles from Interstate 95, a major thoroughfare along the east coast. While other charging stations are available nearby, the station at Brandywine offers EV drivers a charging option off the beaten path at a competitive price.

“This certificate of recognition highlights something we’ve heard a lot: many Pennsylvania communities would be grateful if charging stations were installed on the campus in their area, providing a major benefit for the region, not just Penn State,” Hoskins said.

Now that Brandywine has successfully navigated this process, Buban said she is enthusiastic about sharing what she’s learned with other Penn State units.

“Margaret’s work and Brandywine’s leadership has been really helpful,” Hoskins said. “We have now leveraged this project to apply for federal funding to install stations at many of our other campuses. We were able to use Brandywine’s cost estimates and additional details to create a template for what can happen elsewhere.”

Other Penn State campuses — including Abington, Behrend, Great Valley, Harrisburg, Hazleton and University Park — either have stations in place or are in the process of installing them.