The Ford Motor Company Fund’s NGL (Next-Generation Learning) program has teamed with the company’s STEAM (Science, Technology, Engineering, Arts, and Math) program to provide $50,000 in grants to high school student-led community programs designed to promote sustainability and innovation. One first-place project will receive $20k in funding from Ford NGL, while a second-place project will get $10k, and four third-place initiatives will be given $5k apiece.
- Whites Creek High School (Nashville, TN) – First Place ($20,000): Students plan to convert a Ford F-Series truck and a tractor to run on hydrogen, as well as create a new hydrogen processor to produce fuel, and a solar farm to power it.
- Guilford High School (Rockford, IL) – Second Place ($10,000): Students will create solar-powered charging stations throughout the city of Rockford, Illinois, and build an outdoor learning lab outfitted with solar charging stations.
- Bartow High School (Bartow, FL) – Third Place ($5,000): Students are putting together a 3-day hack-a-thon for underserved youths aging from 13 to 18. The hack-a-thon will put students in-touch with business and tech professionals, who will help guide the development of applications to address some local problem.
- Harlingen High School (Harlingen, TX) – Third Place ($5,000): The High School’s “Skeeterbots” team will prepare drones to deal with the rampant mosquito population in the community.
- Newton College and Career Academy (Covington, GA) – Third Place ($5,000): Students will create a mobile learning lab out of a school bus to teach STEM skills to community residents.
- Pharr-San Juan-Alamo Memorial ECHS (Alamo, TX) – Third Place ($5,000): Students will create a “Community IT Engagement Center” to share IT knowledge with community residents, promoting technology as a means to local economic growth.
“Innovation and sustainability are two essential elements that will help strengthen communities and improve the quality of life for the people who call them home,” says Ford Motor Company Fund Director of Education and Global Community Development Mike Schmidt. “Through creative initiatives like the Ford STEM High School Community Challenge, we hope to encourage innovative approaches to learning that spark student interest and imagination.”