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Wrenshall YES! Team receives grant for local climate change mitigation project

Members of the Wrenshall YES! team plan to enter a solar vehicle in the MTEEA supermileage vehicle competition in Brainerd, Minn. this year, and they got a grant to help them do that. Contributed Photo

It is an exciting time for Wrenshall YES! Team who received a $1,000 grant from the Youth Energy Summit (YES!) Program and The McKnight Foundation. The team will use the grant for their Electric Vehicle project.

The Wrenshall YES! team has participated in the MTEEA supermileage vehicle competition in Brainerd, Minn., for many years, but this year they want to do it a little differently. The team is in the process of building an electric vehicle with a solar battery charging station instead of the usual gasoline vehicle.

"Students will get a chance to explore the world of solar power first hand as this project is unfolding," said YES! coach Chris Gustafson.

Students will have to make a prototype for the vehicle and use computer drafting and 3D printing technologies in the design phase. After learning the basics of solar power and electric vehicles, they will build their own vehicle for the competition. By building an electric vehicle instead of a gasoline vehicle, the students are making a statement that there are other available forms of transportation that are "green" (compared to gasoline) that can perform at the same level.

This award is one of nine grants given to YES! teams throughout the state.

Youth Energy Summit (YES!) is a team-oriented youth program that uses hands-on, experiential learning and energy action projects to address energy opportunities and issues in rural Minnesota communities. Students are the energy of the YES! program. YES! teams are student groups representing schools or communities in grades 7-12, guided by local, adult coaches. Visit youthenergysummit.org for more information.

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