The TechForce Foundation has awarded the new Foundation for Advanced Stem Education (FASE) its first grant, which will establish an elementary-school-level hydrogen fuel cell car competition.
FASE is focused on providing hands-on, team-driven STEM projects for students, encouraging problem-solving skills and helping them explore possible career paths. The competition is the kick-off project for FASE, and the brainchild of FASE founder and Colorado STEM teacher Charles Sprague.
Students from nine elementary schools across multiple school districts in the Denver area will participate in the challenge, building a small fuel-cell DIY kit car. They must assemble the fuel cell components and get the fuel cell operational, as well as install the electric motor. They will then build their own chassis and wheels.
For those students who want to take it a step further, there is a second division of competition where they also will design and build their own body.
“Our research clearly shows that a key impediment to young men and women considering, and then choosing, careers in skilled trades is that they are not exposed to tactile, hands-on engagement in their formative years,” Greg Settle, director of national initiatives at TechForce, said. “To partner with a foundation that is seeking to do just that couldn’t be a more perfect fit for TechForce.”