Grassroots Idea by Ecotech Institute Student Inspires Float in The Denver St. Patrick's Day Parade

Mar 5, 2014

About 150 students, staff and friends expected to participate in the parade to make it truly "green"

March 05, 2014 – Denver, Colo. – Chris Stevens, an Ecotech Institute student, wanted to help pick up recycling along The Denver St. Patrick's Day Parade route in order to to keep this favorite green holiday truly as "green" as possible. He took his idea to parade organizers and from there it turned into a float in the parade that could gather recycling along the route. Students and staff at Ecotech Institute rallied around Chris and today they are making final preparations on the float, which will include a student made recycling bin to collect all recyclables collected during the parade, a truck outfitted with solar panels and a wind turbine.

"It has been remarkable watching my vision come to life," said Chris. "I originally just wanted to help pick up trash and it's turned into so much more. Building our Eco-Float has been an exciting adventure that brought several students together in great ways and I'm so proud of what we've put together. Our efforts will keep the parade route much cleaner."

Ecotech Institute is the first and only school in the U.S. that is solely dedicated to sustainable energy, such as solar and wind. Chris is pursuing a degree in electrical engineering technology and will graduate this April. For him, this idea was simple, but sends a powerful message.

"We have to care about not only where our energy is coming from as we look ahead, but also how we're taking care of our planet today. Small changes can make a difference and we're excited to help divert trash from the landfill – giving it a second life," said Chris.

To see images of the float's progress you can keep up with the construction team by following Ecotech's social media updates on Facebook at and Twitter at @Ecotech_Inst.

Ecotech Institute, based in Aurora, Colo., currently offers eight associate's degree programs:

For more information on Ecotech Institute, visit

About Ecotech Institute
Ecotech Institute is the first and only college entirely focused on preparing America's workforce for careers in renewable energy and sustainability and is accredited by the Accrediting Council for Independent Colleges and Schools. Launched in April 2010 in Denver, Colorado, it offers eight highly practical renewable energy degree programs that provide graduates with skills valued by today's alternative renewable energy employers. Classes start once per quarter and applications are always accepted. Financial assistance is available to those who qualify. Ecotech Institute is a division of Education Corporation of America. For more information about Ecotech Institute, visit or call 877-326-5576.