All of the teams in the Southern region should be very proud of all they accomplished this past year. Congratulations to all of them for a very successful year. Six of nine teams participated in the Southern Spring Judging hosted by Gustavus Adolphus College this spring. Five local judges spent the day hearing from the teams to learn more about the sustainable and energy action projects they completed during the school year. Judges included Jim Dontje director of the Johnson Center for Environmental Innovation at Gustavus Adolphus College, Connie Meeker with MVEC Operation Round Up, Mick McGuire board member at the Ney Nature Center, Lou Schwartzkopf Professor Emeritus at Minnesota State University Mankato, and Judy Elling Przybilla with the Southwest Regional Development Commission and CERT’s. Award recipients are as follows:
All-Star Award Recipient Westbrook-Walnut Grove YES! Team
- Outstanding work in all the following categories: project impact, goal setting, teamwork, community leadership, and community education.
Project Impact Award Recipient – Sleepy Eye YES! Teams
- Outstanding projects that will continue to impact the community include: B3 Benchmarking, eliminating Styrofoam from the cafeteria, and recycling holiday lights, which provides jobs for local residents.
Wow Factor Award Recipient – Westbrook-Walnut Grove YES! Team
- Judges were captivated by the breadth and depth of the projects WWG produced. Projects included expanding pop tab recycling from their school into the community, expansion of the school’s recycling depot to fill a local need, and diesel engine work with an impressive distance to reach out and locate the motor.
Goal Setting & Teamwork Award Recipient – Westbrook-Walnut Grove YES! Team
- For showing exemplary goal setting skills and including all members of the team to accomplish goals.
Community Leadership & Education Award Recipient –Sleepy Eye YES! Teams
For their impressive use of community interaction while participating in local events including Party in the Park and Corn Days, as well as showing skills including innovation, problem-solving, communication, teamwork, and project management when planting trees in their community.
Judges were thoroughly impressed with all teams saying “students are addressing real issues and getting people thinking differently about everyday issues, which makes a difference.” Funding was provided by Minnesota Valley Electric Cooperative Operation Round Up and the United Fund of Le Sueur.
Once again, congratulations to this year’s winners and to everyone participating as the teams have done an amazing job making a positive difference in the world.