Thursday, October 23, 2014
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CNS - Registration is under way for a competition, co- sponsored by Edison International and USC, to encourage middle school and high school students to share their creative ideas to protect the environment.

Rosemead-based Edison International partnered with the USC Wrigley Institute for Environmental Studies, a unit of the USC College of Letters, Arts & Sciences, to create the “Edison Challenge.”

The environmental science project competition is aimed at getting middle school and high school students to develop creative ways to link learning with energy, energy efficiency and the environment.

“The Edison Challenge gives students the opportunity to take a hands-on approach to learning about environmental sciences” said Barbara Parsky, senior vice president of corporate communications for Edison International and Southern California Edison.

“Students who participated in the program’s first year became environmental stewards in their communities and were exposed to exciting career opportunities in the math and science fields” she said.

Last year’s inaugural competition attracted 21 local middle schools and high schools from throughout Southern California. Students entered science projects to compete for trip prizes, which include a week at the USC Wrigley Marine Science Center on Catalina Island and four days at Edison’s Big Creek Hydroelectric facility in the Sierra Nevada.

A teacher who led one of last year’s winning teams sees the Edison Challenge as a way of opening students’ eyes to environmental studies.

“The experience allowed us to learn a great deal about energy and our environment” said Adriene Sandstedt, adviser for the Sutter Academy Middle School team. “The Edison Challenge inspired us to go beyond the traditional ways of learning.”

Each team consists of six students and a teacher who develop a community service project idea and science lesson plan on a topic related to energy and the environment.

The teams will use the ocean, energy and environmental sciences to demonstrate their ideas. High school student teams also submit a research project proposal.

Teams then write a report about their Edison Challenge project and develop a presentation—including a poster, computer-generated video or multimedia production—about the project.

Participating teachers will be invited to take part in professional development workshops to learn about environmental science that they can take back and teach in the classroom.

Edison Challenge projects must focus on one or more of the following topics:

  • Energy transfer (through wind, ocean currents, or water cycle);
  • Energy conservation and energy efficiency (for residential, commercial or industrial users, water conservation, land conservation, recycling or waste management);
  • Environmental protection and sustainability (habitat or endangered species protection, watershed management and climate change);
  • Renewable energy resources (small hydroelectric, solar, wind, biomass and geothermal);
  • Air and water quality (compliance and stewardship, environmental justice and traffic congestion management); and
  • Alternative transportation (electric, biodiesel and alternative fuels).

Registration continues through Oct. 31. Final projects are due in early February, with winners to be announced the following month.

For more information or to register for the Edison Challenge, visit www.sce.com/edisonchallenge, or call Justina Garcia at (626) 302-4135.

Category: Education


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