Nicole Vandaele

Nicole Vandaele
Mentor: Dr. Wendell Porter
College of Agricultural and Life Sciences
"I am pursuing an undergraduate thesis to gain more experience with research, and to explore a topic that I am truly passionate about. Volunteering with a non-profit organization in New Orleans sparked my interest in renewable energy technologies and the concept of how small changes can add up to make a big difference. "


Environmental Science and Geology



Research Interests

  • Renewable Energy
  • Energy Efficiency

Academic Awards

  • NAGT Field Camp Scholarship, 2014
  • Johnathan Banks Field Camp Scholar Award, 2014
  • Anderson Scholar Award, 2014
  • Friends of Fakahatchee Environmental Preservation Award, 2013


  • Golden Key International Honor Society
  • School of Natural Resources and Environment Liaison
  • Sigma Gamma Epsilon Geologic Honor Society


  • UF GeoGators Educational Outreach Program
  • SPARK a Change Elemetary Tutoring
  • UF Sustainability Hut

Hobbies and Interests

  • Traveling
  • Hiking Colorado‚Äôs 14ers (Mountains over 14,000 ft in elevation)
  • Baking
  • Scrapbooking

Research Description

Incremental Implementation and Energy Efficiency: Quest for a Sustainable Future
Energy production and consumption through oil, coal, natural gas, nuclear power, and renewable sources has been extensively documented for most, if not all countries in the world. With projections for worldwide energy usage increasing until 2040 and global population inflating to over 9 billion by 2050, planning a realistic, yet sustainable energy strategy demands attention. In this study, we will look at how an incremental approach to the implementation of localized renewable energy technologies may be able to support traditional sources of energy in the United States and developing nations, specifically in Africa. We will also attempt to evaluate the extent to which low cost-no cost efficiency changes in residential and commercial structures can impact the nationwide energy consumption in the United States. This study aims to assess the combination of energy efficiency advances, small-scale power generating stations, and installation of renewable energy for a realistic, sustainable future.