Offshore wind company Bluepoint Wind recently announced the winners of grants to further STEM education for 10 teachers from schools across New Jersey. Each educator chosen by Bluepoint will receive $1,000 worth of interactive science, technology, energy & mathematics kits from KidWind, an international leader in renewable energy education.
“The next generation of renewable energy workers who will power New Jersey are sitting in middle school classrooms right now,” John Dempsey, CEO of Bluepoint Wind, said. “Bluepoint Wind is helping educators prepare students for a net-zero New Jersey and decarbonized world, all while supporting the state’s innovative climate change curriculum. We are proud to support New Jersey teachers who are instrumental in fostering students’ passions for STEM and its critical role in building our energy future.”
Each of the 10 teachers will receive a $1,000 minigrant funded by Bluepoint Wind and applied toward the purchase of interactive wind energy STEM kits from KidWind. KidWind will also provide the winners with training on how to incorporate the STEM kits into in-school and/or out-of-school learning environments.
In addition to partnering with KidWind on this educator minigrant initiative, Bluepoint Wind sits on its Career Pathways Ad Hoc Committee on Offshore Wind Energy Education to provide industry support around youth workforce development.
“Offshore wind energy will be an important part of New Jersey’s decarbonization strategy,” Michael Arquin, founder of KidWind, said. “While this technology is just starting to be installed in the U.S. it is important to help future scientists and engineers understand and get excited about this timely subject. We congratulate all of the educators who are receiving Bluepoint Wind minigrants, which bring wind energy education and resources to schools in New Jersey, and we look forward to supporting them as they implement KidWind curriculum and materials in their classrooms.”
The winning educators are:
- Vicki Cornell, Boonton High School;
- Emily Williams, East Side High School (Newark);
- Allison Wiesel, Shrewsbury Boro School;
- Maura Simister, Manchester Township Schools;
- Oscar Acebo Macias, Union City High School;
- Jeannine Lanphear, Mid-Jersey Green STREAM Learning Ecosystem (serving the North Brunswick Schools);
- Joseph Costello, Atlantic City High School;
- Kathleen Kalena, Dover Public Schools;
- Gerald Bruman, Millville High School;
- Michelle Albritton, Paterson Public Schools.
Teachers were selected from northern, central and southern New Jersey, with consideration given to those working in schools in overburdened communities. The application was launched at the New Jersey Education Association Convention in November and applications were due on Dec. 1. All New Jersey educators who entered the competition but did not win the minigrants will still receive a comprehensive guide on teaching wind energy to students in grades 6-12, filled with lessons and activities.
“We were thrilled to have KidWind and Bluepoint Wind at the NJEA Convention this year,” Sean Spiller, NJEA president, said. “There are few issues more important to our students’ future than our climate, so we applaud KidWind and Bluepoint Wind for both leading on that issue and providing our members with resources that help them prepare the next generation of energy and climate innovators.”
“As a proud partner of Bluepoint Wind and KidWind on the advancement of wind energy education in the state, we congratulate the recipients of these grants,” Dan Barnett, chief development officer for Students 2 Science Inc., said. “This initiative is a great step in ensuring that all students have access to the necessary tools to prepare them for future industries and careers in the state.”
“As the first U.S. state to introduce K-12 standards addressing climate change, it is important to encourage and support school districts to use these standards to develop interdisciplinary climate change learning experiences that integrate an understanding of climate threats and implement community derived solutions for a sustainable future,” Janice McDonnell, STEM agent, Department of 4-H Youth Development at Rutgers University, said.