Success Story

Western Carolina University Cuts Costs and Energy Usage with Brightly's Energy Manager

Western Carolina University
Cullowhee, North Carolina
Director of Energy and Utilities


When Reid Conway, Director of Energy and Utilities, joined Western Carolina University, the facilities team was still using spreadsheets to track energy usage. Conway, committed to cutting costs by boosting energy efficiency, made it his goal to build a culture of sustainability across the campus. Knowing that   increased visibility of energy usage was vital to its reduction, Conway wrote a grant proposal to fund three years of access to Brightly’s Energy Manager and submitted the proposal to the student-run Sustainable Campus Initiative. The student committee approved his proposal and awarded the energy department with funding to implement Energy Manager.  

"Sustainability is important for our campus and our students, and they saw what we could do with Brightly," Conway says. His team began using Energy Manager in 2023 and plans to add the software to their budget after the three-year grant is completed.  


After transitioning to Brightly’s Energy Manager, Western Carolina University has been able to:

  • Achieve 55% in BTU per square foot reduction, leading the UNC system
  • Gain visibility into utility usage by each building or utility meter
  • Track monthly energy usage and easily compare with previous months or years
  • Make informed decisions about facility usage, repairs and updates to conserve energy and costs


Community college with:
• $5 million utility budget
• More than 11,000 students
• Campus sprawling over 682 acres