STEM Expo to feature sustainability

The Wellesley Education Foundation (WEF)’s STEM Expo at Wellesley High School (WHS) on Saturday will feature science, technology, engineering, and math exhibits of a wide variety, ranging from robots and weather to agriculture and aerodynamics.  One specific topic, however, will take on an increased role this year compared to last: sustainability.

Running from 10am to 2pm, the STEM Expo will feature a long list of speakers, exhibits, and activities devoted to sustainability education.  Quentin Prideaux, a Sustainable Wellesley leader trained by the Climate Reality Project, will present on the basic facts of climate change, including its causes and effects.  Wellesley College will also host exhibits on safe and sustainable backyard gardening, as well as sustainable innovations.  The Charles River Watershed Association has also generously provided an exhibit on the need for sustainable farming habits around bodies of water that illustrates the consequences of human actions on the surrounding environment.

The WHS Green Team will also be returning with its own exhibit on the sustainable features included in the 2012 high school building.  The student group will provide tours of the high school’s “green” features, with stops ranging from the building’s porous pavement driveways to its geothermal heat production center.  In parallel with the tours, the Green Team will host a table showcasing the school’s energy sources and low energy consumption with interactive displays, as well as sell reusable water bottles at a reduced price with aims to promote their widespread use.

“Simply explaining all the sustainable features that are included in the new high school is hugely important in order to educate the public about the sustainable practices employed in public spaces,” said Abbey Mui, a Green Team member. “In some ways, this can also serve as inspiration for homeowners to take the next step towards making their own ‘building’ sustainable in a smaller way, like with the installation of solar panels.”

The winners of the Sustainability Challenge video contest, in which high school students competed to produce the most effective five-minute video that explains the meaning behind the term “sustainability,” will also be announced at the Expo at 2pm.  For more information on the Expo’s guest speakers, presenters, and exhibitors, visit wellesleyeducationfoundation.org.

(Matthew Hornung and Olivia Gieger)

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