Press Release

Press Release State Officials Recognize 33 Programs for Excellence in Energy and Environmental Education

For immediate release:
  • Executive Office of Energy and Environmental Affairs

Media Contact

Katie Gronendyke,

Boston — At a State House ceremony, Energy and Environmental Affairs (EEA) Secretary Matthew Beaton today honored 33 energy and environmental education programs at Massachusetts schools and nonprofits as part of the 23rd Annual Secretary’s Awards for Excellence in Energy and Environmental Education.

“Hands-on energy and environmental educational programs improve students’ problem-solving skills and create lifelong passions for science and the environment,” said Governor Charlie Baker. “Our administration is proud to recognize the students, teachers and nonprofits raising awareness and coming up with creative solutions to our pressing energy and environmental issues.”

“These educators are engaging students in real-world environmental and energy issues and bringing topics they learn in the classroom to life,” said Lieutenant Governor Karyn Polito. “The programs recognized today are developing students who will make a positive and lasting impact on their communities, schools and the environment.”

Winners competed for $5,000 in awards, funded by the Massachusetts Environmental Trust with the intention to fund further environmental education initiatives at the schools. EEA solicited Excellence in Energy and Environmental Education Award nominations in early 2017. Schools and organizations that voluntarily incorporate environmental education into public or private school curricula are given priority.

“The outstanding educational programs honored today immerse students in important issues like energy, recycling and wildlife conservation,” said Energy and Environmental Affairs Secretary Beaton. “It is more important than ever that we teach the next generation the importance of preserving and protecting our natural resources.”

The project applications were scored by the Secretary's Advisory Group on Energy and Environmental Education, a group of environmental educators from state agencies, non-profits, industry and academia.

“Not only are these schools teaching students important lessons about protecting the environment, they are also providing them with valuable knowledge and skills in STEM subjects that could spark their future career choices,” said Education Secretary James Peyser.  

23rd Annual Secretary’s Awards for Excellence in Energy and Environmental Education

AGAWAM: Agawam Junior High School (Feeding Hills), “Community Garden, Outdoor Classroom Beautification Project,” Sandra Johnson, Grades 7 & 8
ANDOVER: West Middle School Waste Leaders, “Zero Waste Initiative”, Grades K-12
BOSTON: e-inc. Josiah Quincy Elementary School, “e-inc Green Team”, Grades K-5
BOSTON: Boston Public Schools’ Young Achievers Science and Math Pilot Program, “Pathway to Nature Outreach Program,” Roberta Udoh, Grades K0-K1
BOSTON: Foundation for a Green Future, Inc. and Project Green Schools, “Massachusetts Water Forum Youth Summit,” Grades 9-12
BOURNE: Bournedale Elementary School, “Adopt-a- Herring,” Lucinda Keith, Grade 3
BROCKTON: Brockton High School, “Brockton High School-Wildlands Trust Envirothon Team” Joyce Voohris, Grades 9-12
CAMBRIDGE: City Sprouts Summer Garden Program, “Middle School Youth Program,” Grades 6-8
CHARLEMONT: Hawlemont Regional School, “Make a Difference Program,” Jennifer Sinistore, Grade 5
CHICOPEE: Pope Francis High School “Robert Brodeur’s Environmental Science Program,” “Oceanography and Earth Science Programs,” Grades K-12 br /DIGHTON: Dighton-Rehoboth Regional High School, “The Environmental Technology Sustainability Program,” Tabitha Yeager, Grades 9-12
ESSEX: Seaside Sustainability, Inc., “Experiential Environmental Adventure Education Program,” Eric Magers Emily Arthur, Grades 5-12
FALMOUTH: Falmouth Public High School, “A Collection of Poetry and Artwork Inspired by Cape Cod the Elizabeth Islands,” Jane Baker, Grades 9-12
FALMOUTH: Teaticket Elementary School, “Habitats for Migrators – Teaticket Park and Coonamessett River,” Maura Baxter, Erin Crapo, Jody Kirincich, Grade 2
GROTON: Groton-Dunstable Regional High School, “Ecology Program,” Melanie McCracken, Grades 11 & 12
HAVERHILL: Hill View Montessori Charter Public School, “Energy Project,” Germaine Koomen, Grades 4-6
LOWELL: Lowell High School, Mass Audubon Lowell Parks and Conservation Trust, the LLIS Compass Team’s “Lowell Leaders in Stewardship, Compass Team,” Grade 9
LOWELL: Lowell High School, “Environmental Club Teacher Barbara Eddy,” Grades 9-12
MARION: Tabor Academy, “Biology, Aquaculture Marine Field Ecology,” Jennifer Albright, Teacher, Grades 9-12
NANTUCKET: Maria Mitchell Association, “Trees and the Community,” Kim Botelho & Annie Mendelsohn, Grade 5
NEW BEDFORD: Greater New Bedford Voc-Tech High School, “Sunflowers for Soil Remediation,” Environmental Science/Technology Students, Grades 9-12
OAK BLUFFS: Martha’s Vineyard Regional High School’s MVironment Club, “The Phragmites Bio-mass Pellet Project,” Grades 10-12
PEABODY: Captain Samuel Brown School “Green Strides Program,” Grades K-5
SALEM: Salem Sound Coastwatch, “Talking Trash for Clean Oceans Internship Project,” Grades 9-12
SPENCER: David Prouty High School Richard Sugden Public Library, “Envirothon Team,” Mary McLaughlin & Mary Baker-Wood,
WALPOLE: Norfolk County Agricultural High School, “Environmental Science Program,” Grades 9-12
WELLESLEY: Katherine Lee Bates Elementary School’s Cafeteria and Food Recovery Team, “Cafeteria Recycling and Food Recovery Project,” Grades K-5
WILLIAMSBURG: Ann T. Dunphy School, “Hydrology Art,” Todd Lynch, Grades 5 & 6
WILLIAMSBURG: Ann T. Dunphy School, “Korpita’s Kids Green Team,” Johanna Korpita, Grade 2
WINCHENDON: Toy Town Elementary School, “Forest and Water Explorations and Integrations,” Ann McDonald, Grade 5
WINCHESTER: McCall’s Middle School Greenhouse Club, “Green Thumbs Up for Community Partnerships,” Grades 6-8
WORCESTER: EcoTarium Museum of Science and Nature, “City Science: The Science You Live,” Grade 12 and beyond
WRENTHAM: King Philip Regional High School’s Environmental Science Classes/Curriculum, Gretchen Pickart, Grades 11 & 12

“It's great to see that our students are being offered innovative and creative educational programs that truly engage them on energy and environmental issues,” said State Representative Brian S. Dempsey (D-Haverhill), House Chair of the Committee on Ways Means. “I am proud to stand with Secretary Beaton recognizing the hard work and commitment of our educators.”

“I couldn't be more proud of the students, teachers, and nonprofits in Lowell that have taken the initiative to incorporate environmental education in to their curriculum,” said State Representative Thomas A. Golden, Jr. (D-Lowell), Chairman of the Joint Committee on Telecommunications, Utilities, and Energy.  “I thank the Baker-Polito Administration for investing in these important programs that are teaching our youth the value of taking care of our environment and our communities.”

“The excellent programs at Lowell High School and Groton-Dunstable Regional High School help students draw connections between the information in their textbooks and the environmental issues that their communities are facing,” said State Senator Eileen Donoghue (D-Lowell). “They are preparing the future stewards of the commonwealth’s natural resources.”

“The students and teachers recognized by the Baker-Polito Administration with these awards are doing important work to raise awareness about environmental issues here in the Commonwealth,” said State Senator Vinny deMacedo (R-Plymouth). “I am especially proud that students and teachers in Bourne and Falmouth were recognized for their extraordinary contribution to environmental education in their communities.”

“The programs in Falmouth and Bourne being recognized today are important steps to expanding the vision of leaving no child inside, connecting the arts to the sciences, and passing Aldo Leopold’s Land Ethic to future generations; for that which they learn to love, they will learn to protect,” said State Representative David T. Vieira (R-East Falmouth).

“As millennials, we know that the single biggest issue facing our generation is climate change,” said State Representative Dylan Fernandes (D-Falmouth). “It gives me hope to see these student leaders step up and take action to protect our environment.”

“It is wonderful to see more and more students becoming involved and interested in protecting and conserving our fragile environment,” said State Senator Anne Gobi (D-Spencer), Senate Chair of the Joint Committee on Environment, Natural Resources and Agriculture. “Their knowledge in turn is passed on to the community and other students so we that we all benefit.  Thank you to the administration and Secretary Beaton for supporting our students and schools with this recognition.”


Media Contact

Executive Office of Energy and Environmental Affairs 

The Executive Office of Energy and Environmental Affairs seeks to protect, preserve, and enhance the Commonwealth’s environmental resources while ensuring a clean energy future for the state’s residents. Through the stewardship of open space, protection of environmental resources, and enhancement of clean energy, the Executive Office of Energy and Environmental Affairs works tirelessly to make Massachusetts a wonderful place to live, work, and raise a family.


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