Chevron funds expanding educational program

Chevron will continue to fund a youth educational program focusing on energy development and production.

An $80,000 grant from the company’s corporate office and an additional grant from its regional operations will help pay for college credit for participating students and teachers, instruction and materials, guest speakers, field trips and other expenses.

Chevron previously awarded the John McConnell Math and Science Center in Grand Junction $125,000 to launch the Youth Policy Summit and create the curriculum for the first year.

The center plans to expand the program for the 2012-2013 school year to offer professional development for teachers through a multidisciplinary course titled “Energy for the 21st Century.”

“All across America, Chevron is emphasizing STEM (science, technology, engineering and math) education in its community outreach,” said Michael DeBerry, Rocky Mountain area manager for Chevron. “This program is unique in its approach to learning and its collaboration between multiple institutions and resources. Our goal for the students is to spark a life-long interest in science, expand their knowledge about energy production and help them develop the skills they’ll need to provide leadership and ideas in the future.”

A total of 14 students from Fruita, Grand Junction and Palisade high schools participate in weekly classes at the center.

“Students in the first year have given the program high marks so far and will be doing more hands-on work and exploration of the intersection between science and policy in today’s world,” said Teresa Coons, executive director of the center. “One of the important objectives of this course is to provide students with the knowledge they need to become informed citizens.”

“The teacher track next year will meet an expressed demand and will provide valuable professional development in science,” Coons added.

For more information about the center or Youth Policy Summit, call 254-1626 or visit www.mathandsciencecenter.org.