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Webinar: Transformative Education: Changing How We Teach Energy Efficiency by Leveraging the Creative Arts

May 7, 2025 @ 2:00 pm - 3:00 pm EDT

In a world besieged by environmental and social crises caused by the overconsumption of fossil-fuel based energy usage, the need for swift and effective action on energy efficiency has never been more urgent. We propose that transformative education, combined with the principles of Passive House, can revolutionize our approach to energy efficiency, driving it further, faster, and more sustainably than ever before. Transformative education recognizes the need to empower individuals to reshape their thinking and become active environmental and social change agents. Rather than presenting information as a static repository, transformative education encourages individuals to engage, question, and apply knowledge. It is a dynamic approach that fosters innovation and resilience in the face of complex challenges. One powerful way to impart transformative education is through the integration of creative arts into the learning process. Creative arts stimulate the imagination, encourage divergent thinking, and nurture innovation. Through the creative arts, we can amplify the impact of educational efforts related to Energy Efficiency and Passive House principles. This approach not only makes learning more engaging but also equips individuals with the tools to think outside the box and devise innovative solutions, crucial for tackling current and future environmental challenges. The Pratt Brooklyn Ice Box Challenge is a case study that exemplifies the transformative potential of creative education. In Spring 2023, Pratt Institute’s fourth-year architecture students undertook an unprecedented initiative—the first-ever US collegiate design-build international rendition of the Ice Box Challenge. This event was not a traditional exhibition but an immersive experience, inviting people of all ages to actively engage with Passive House principles in a fun and digestible format. The Ice Box Challenge culminated in a public celebration, transcending the boundaries of conventional education, breaking down barriers, and inspiring action on a massive scale. In conclusion, addressing our pressing environmental and social challenges necessitates swift action on energy efficiency. Passive House principles offer a proven framework, but their widespread adoption requires transformative education to empower individuals to think outside the box and devise innovative solutions, crucial for tackling current and future environmental challenges.

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In Cho, Sustainability Coordinator – Undergraduate Architecture, Visiting Assistant Professor, Pratt Institute

In Cho, a leader in sustainable architecture and education, is the co-founder of ChoShields Studio, Passive House For Everyone (PHFE) and the Sustainability Coordinator at Pratt Institute in Brooklyn, New York. With a multi-disciplinary focus spanning low-carbon architectural design, environmental education, and policy advocacy, Cho champions sustainability initiatives, reaching diverse audiences from industry professionals to youth.

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