FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE - 03.18.10
Lauren Espin, for Siemens Foundation
Juliet Farrell, for Discovery Communications
Kate Meyer, for NSTA
Exclusive Screening of New Documentary LIFE Kicks-Off High School Phase of Siemens We Can Change the World Challenge
--Nation’s Premier Sustainability Challenge Expands to Encourage High School Students to Become Green ‘Agents of Change’ in Their Communities and Beyond--
(PHILADELPHIA) – The Siemens Foundation, Discovery Education and the National Science Teachers Association (NSTA) are partnering again this year to educate, empower and engage students and teachers nationwide to become “Agents of Change” in improving their communities through the Siemens We Can Change the World Challenge . This year, the Challenge, which in 2009 attracted thousands of participants across the country, expands again, inviting high school students in ninth through twelfth grades to join the effort to meet the environmental challenges of our age.
This new phase of the Siemens We Can Change the World Challenge kicks off today at an exclusive screening for science teachers of Discovery Channel’s new documentary LIFE at Philadelphia’s renowned Franklin Institute in conjunction with the NSTA National Conference. From the makers of PLANET EARTH, LIFE is the definitive exploration of our planet’s living things and their spectacular, bizarre and fascinating behaviors, bringing to the forefront the necessity of environmental awareness and sustainability.
In keeping with the Challenge’s overall mission to build a more sustainable world, high school participants are encouraged to form teams of up to four students, research an energy-related issue using scientific investigation, and create a replicable solution using web-based curriculum tools powered by Discovery Education.
“The Siemens We Can Change the World Challenge is a unique environmental challenge that aims to inspire our nations students from elementary school through high school to become stewards of our planet through scientific exploration,” said Siemens Foundation President Jeniffer Harper-Taylor. “Our goal is to motivate our next generation of scientists, engineers and environmentalists to make an impact in the world around them.”
“EPA is proud to be a part of the Siemens We Can Change the World Challenge for high school students. The thousands of students who already have participated in the Challenge have demonstrated that everyone can make a difference in supporting the health of the environment,” said EPA Administrator Lisa P. Jackson. "The EPA is working with the Siemens Foundation, Discovery Education, and the National Science Teachers Association to harness the extraordinary creativity and talent of our nation’s young people. We’re preparing the innovators of tomorrow by giving them an opportunity to solve the problems of today."
Teachers, students and mentors can log on to www.wecanchange.com now to register for the 2011 Siemens We Can Change the World Challenge , which officially opened for entries on March 15, 2010. Student and teacher/mentor prizes include scholarships, grants, TV appearances and much more. Fostering learning, teamwork and problem solving around sustainability, the website offers robust resource guides of standards-based lesson plans and teacher materials to accompany each stage of the Challenge. These materials are created by Discovery Education, the division of Discovery Communications providing scientifically proven, standards-based digital content and resources to classrooms nationwide, and the NSTA, the largest science teacher organization in the world dedicated to improving science education and increasing student learning by engaging all teachers of science.
The deadline for entries for the 2011 Challenge is March 15, 2011 (finalists and winners announced in April 2011 and national winners announced in May 2011).
The Siemens We Can Change the World Challenge first launched in 2008 with a national middle-school challenge focused on local community change. The grand prize winning team, Team Dead Weight from West Branch, Iowa, raised awareness of the environmental hazards of lead wheel weights in tires. As a result of their efforts and participation in the Challenge, they were invited to present their project at the United Nations International Youth Day and to the Environmental Protection Agency’s Senior Administrator Lisa Jackson as well as meet Secretary of Education, Arne Duncan. In 2009, the Siemens We Can Change the World Challenge expanded to include an elementary school phase with students focusing projects on their classroom and school environments.
About the Siemens Foundation
The Siemens Foundation provides more than $7 million annually in support of educational initiatives in the areas of science, technology, engineering and mathematics (STEM) in the United States. Its signature programs include the Siemens Competition in Math, Science & Technology, Siemens Awards for Advanced Placement, and The Siemens We Can Change the World Challenge, which encourages K-12 students to develop innovative green solutions for environmental issues. In February 2010 the Siemens Foundation launched its newest initiative, The Siemens STEM Academy, a national STEM education program for teachers designed to support educators in their efforts to foster student achievement in these fields. By supporting outstanding students today, and recognizing the teachers and schools that inspire their excellence, the Foundation helps nurture tomorrow’s scientists and engineers. The Foundation’s mission is based on the culture of innovation, research and educational support that is the hallmark of Siemens’ U.S. companies and its parent company, Siemens AG. For further information, visit www.siemens-foundation.org .
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 National Science Teachers Association
The Arlington, VA-based National Science Teachers Association (NSTA) is the largest professional organization in the world promoting excellence and innovation in science teaching and learning for all. NSTA`s current membership includes more than 60,000 science teachers, science supervisors, administrators, scientists, business and industry representatives, and others involved in science education. For more information, please visit www.nsta.org .