NETL K-12 STEM Education & Outreach program lead Ken Mechling served as a co-presenter at the Energy “Train the Trainer” Teacher Workshop in the Ridgway School District in Ridgway, Pennsylvania, Aug. 15. During the workshop, educators and administrators learned more about topics surrounding energy and ways to incorporate science, technology, engineering and math (STEM) learning into the classroom.
Seneca Resources Company LLC, Apex Energy LLC, NETL and the National Energy Education Development (NEED) Project teamed up to provide the workshop for teachers in grades 4-12, as well as administrators. During the workshop, Mechling shared STEM ideas with teachers to use with students during the school year. They also listened to speakers in the energy industry, shared energy resources and ideas with one another, investigated partnership opportunities and discussed ways to integrate energy and STEM career education into fun lessons for students.
“Exploring STEM topics is an effective way to develop creativity and early critical thinking skills,” Mechling said. “By ‘training the trainer,’ teachers have the opportunity to learn how to effectively and actively engage students in ways they can enjoy and learn from.”
The NEED Project works with energy companies, agencies and organizations to bring balanced energy programs to the nation’s schools with a focus on strong teacher development. It seeks to promote an energy-conscious and educated society by creating effective networks of students, educators, business, government and community leaders to design and deliver objective, multi-sided energy education programs.
Workshop convener Seneca Resources Company LLC, the exploration and production segment of National Fuel Gas Company in Houston, Texas, explores for, develops and produces natural gas and oil reserves in California and the Appalachian region, including the Marcellus and Utica Shales. Seneca Resources is working with school districts throughout the region to help attract students to STEM-related studies and careers by partnering with NEED.
NETL’s K-12 STEM Education & Outreach program provides professional training and development for educators, classroom visits, Science Bowl competitions, career awareness and STEM contests to inspire the next generation of scientists, researchers and engineers who will develop technological solutions to America’s energy challenges.