In spring and summer 2007 Sandy Smith-Nonini collaborated with Clean Energy Durham, educators and community members on a solar hot water survey of Watts-Hillandale. The survey was carried out by roughly 30 students from two classes at the North Carolina School of Science and Math, with assistance of NCSSM Professors Marion Brisk and Carole Stern.
The students attended a slide show by Dr. Smith-Nonini, and then received training by solar installers on how to assess a roof for feasibility of installing solar hot water. The students then surveyed local residences in from curb-side viewing to determine which were good candidates for solar. Students then leafleted over 243 homes that their solar exposure survey had indicated as having good solar potential. Dr. Smith-Nonini coordinated several information sessions for interested homeowners. Through an arrangement with Clean Energy Durham and local solar installers participating homeowners were offered a discount on the purchase and installation of solar equipment.