FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE - 02.03.09
Carrie Fox, X PRIZE Foundation
Stephen Wakefield, Discovery Education
U.S. Department of Energy, The X PRIZE Foundation and Discovery Education Create Dynamic Online Destination to Excite Students about Energy Efficiency
www.FuelOurFutureNow.com engages students in science and math education through the student-friendly Progressive Insurance Automotive X PRIZE Competition
Washington, DC. (February 3, 2009) – Today, the X PRIZE Foundation, The United States Department of Energy and Discovery Education launched the first phase of an online knowledge center to ignite imaginations and fuel student curiosity in the areas of science and math. The website, www.FuelOurFutureNow.com, was inspired by the Progressive Insurance Automotive X PRIZE, the goal of which is to inspire a new generation of viable, super fuel-efficient vehicles that offer more consumer choices.
www.FuelOurFutureNow.com serves as an interactive online portal offering stimulating science, technology, engineeri ng and math (STEM) lessons and resources for students, teachers and families as the unique and engaging Progressive Automotive X PRIZE competition unfolds.
This online knowledge center is just one component of a national education program to encourage young people to pursue careers in energy-efficiency-related sciences and technology, made possible through a $3.5 million USD grant from The U.S. Department of Energy.
“The Department’s collaboration with the Automotive X PRIZE and Discovery Education leverages private sector expertise to educate and engage the public about technologies to transform our transportation sector,” DOE Deputy Assistant Secretary David E. Rodgers said. “Together, we can inspire all Americans – including teachers, students, vehicle designers, and drivers – to join us in designing and operating a new generation of vehicles that save energy and reduce greenhouse gas emissions.”
As additional resources are added, educators will find th e website an empowering resource that engages students about the science of alternative fuels and energy-efficient engineering. Featuring targeted curriculum for all grade levels K-12, as well as high-quality video, virtual laboratories, stimulating interactives and additional resources, teachers can use the online knowledge center to achieve their STEM goals.
The Progressive Automotive X PRIZE education program will also showcase the 21st century skills students will need to compete in our new global economy, including creativity and innovation, critical thinking and problem solving, communication and collaboration.
Once the online knowledge center is complete, it will provide an interactive experience that will allow both students and the general public an opportunity to follow the competing vehicles as they perform during the Progressive Automotive X PRIZE competition and, as a result, learn about key science and technology issues.
“The Progressive Automot ive X PRIZE is a compelling tool to engage students in STEM education, and we are designing the accompanying curriculum modules to help teachers take full advantage of student’s interest in this exciting race,” said William McDonald, Discovery Education Director of Curriculum.
“Our hope is that this online knowledge center and other components of the education program will encourage students to become change agents— helping to persuade their peers, parents and the public to become more aware of fuel-efficiency, both in the short term and in the future,” explained Mark German, Director of Education Programs for the X PRIZE Foundation.
Visit the Progressive Automotive X PRIZE online knowledge center at www.FuelOurFutureNow.com.
ABOUT THE U.S. DEPARTMENT OF ENERGY
Working with a wide array of state, community, industry, and university partners, the U.S. Department of Ener gy’s Office of Energy Efficiency and Renewable Energy invests in a diverse portfolio of energy technologies. Energy efficiency and clean, renewable energy will mean a stronger economy, a cleaner environment, and greater energy independence for America. For more information about the U.S. Department of Energy’s Office of Energy Efficiency and Renewable Energy please contact the EERE Information Center at 1-877-EERE-INF (1-877-337-3463) or on the web at www.eere.energy.gov.
ABOUT DISCOVERY EDUCATION
Discovery Communications (NASDAQ: DISCA, DISCB, DISCK) revolutionized television with Discovery Channel and is now transforming classrooms through Discovery Education. Powered by the number one nonfiction media company in the world, Discovery Education combines scientifically proven, standards-based digital media and a dynamic user community in order to empower teachers to improve student achievement. Already, more than half of all U.S. schools access Discovery Education digital services. Explore the future of education at www.discoveryeducation.com.
ABOUT THE X PRIZE FOUNDATION:
The X PRIZE Foundation is an educational nonprofit prize institute whose mission is to create radical breakthroughs for the benefit of humanity. In 2004, the Foundation captured world headlines when Burt Rutan, backed by Microsoft co-founder Paul Allen, built and flew the world’s first private vehicle to space to win the $10 million Ansari X PRIZE. The Foundation has since launched the $10 million Archon X PRIZE for Genomics, the $30 million Google Lunar X PRIZE, and the $10 million Progressive Automotive X PRIZE. The Foundation is creating prizes in five areas: Exploration (Space and Underwater), Life Sciences, Energy & Environment, Education and Global Development. The Foundation is widely recognized as t he leading model for fostering innovation through competition. For more information on the Foundation, please visit www.xprize.org.