St. Vrain’s Mobile Innovation Lab guides students on a virtual solar tour through the community

St. Vrain Valley Schools students will tour their local solar community through a collaboration between the ST. VRAINNOVATION Future-Ready Innovation Lab and Mead High School’s Energy Academy. The two district organizations arranged a tour of four community/industry partners who are committed to using solar energy in their day-to-day operations – United Power, Stapp Interstate Toyota, Jack's Solar Garden, and IBM. The Mobile Lab will make an hour-long stop at each of these locations, where they will tour the company’s solar field and conduct an interview focused on science, economics, and the environment as they pertain to solar energy. 
Each site visit will be filmed and the footage will be compiled to create a video for students to view during their upcoming curriculum unit on solar energy. 
Shannon Krack, Mead High School Energy Academy Coordinator, will be hosting the interviews at each solar stop. 
“At each location, we will be conducting interviews and gathering footage of actual equipment and use cases, which will be used to create virtual experiences for our students at Mead High,” said Krack.
While the immediate audience is students in Mead High’s Energy Academy, the video will be shared out to students across the district.
“We have had to find creative ways to provide students with experiences they'd otherwise have during a traditional school-year,” Krack says.
Matthew Wiggins, St. Vrain’s Director of Community/Business Development, was on the event’s planning team. 
“St. Vrain has a great deal of experience when it comes to innovation and thinking outside the box. By continuously cultivating community and industry relationships – like our partners on the solar tour – investing in technology, and strengthening infrastructure, we're able to visualize and realize engagements like the 'solar tour'.”
Wiggins plans to continue facilitating connections between local industry partners and students. 
“As we progress through the school year, more and more virtual opportunities will begin to take shape in other focus programs offered in St. Vrain Valley Schools,” said Wiggins. 
The Solar Tour Itinerary is as follows:
Tuesday, September 29
  • Stapp Toyota, 10-11 a.m.
  • United Power @ The Maverick Solar Array, 1-2 p.m.
Friday, October 2
  • Jack's Solar Garden, 9-10 a.m.
  • IBM, 11-12 p.m.
The Mead Energy Academy is an immersive experience for students interested in pursuing a career in the energy industry with a curriculum designed to comprehensively study the principles of energy and develop future leaders and innovators. The program is the only one of its kind in Colorado and exposes students to energy generated from both conventional and renewable sources. Through strategic partnerships with leaders of industry, students are given unique, hands-on experiences that cannot be matched in the classroom environment.