This is an excerpt from the Second Quarter 2012 edition of the Wind Program R&D Newsletter.

The University of Colorado at Denver and the Wirth Chair awarded the Energy Department's National Renewable Energy Laboratory (NREL) a Wirth Chair Sustainability Award for its work on the Wind for Schools Project. NREL manages the Wind for Schools project as part of its support to the Department's Wind Powering America initiative. NREL and its project partners, the Colorado governor's energy office and the Colorado State University Wind Application Center, were recognized at an awards luncheon on April 25th.

This year marks the 13th anniversary of the Wirth Chair Awards that celebrate the "Creators of a Sustainable Future." The Wirth Chair in Sustainable Development at the School of Public Affairs at the University of Colorado at Denver is named for former U.S. Senator and Under Secretary of State, Timothy E. Wirth. It honors environmental and sustainable development achievements across Colorado.

The Energy Department's Wind Powering America initiative has helped to launch the Wind for Schools project in 11 states, including Colorado. The program provides training in wind design and implementation for engineering students at the universities and gives K-12 students, teachers, and the community a hands-on opportunity to learn about wind as well.

In 2009, the Colorado Wind Application Center at Colorado State University (CSU) in Fort Collins and the Colorado governor's energy office selected six rural Colorado schools to participate in the Wind for Schools project. The governor's energy office provided a $5,000 grant for each school to help purchase and install a Skystream 3.7 wind turbine. These turbines provide the basis for learning about wind in the school.

NREL manages the program, funds the wind application centers through subcontracts, and trains teachers and community facilitators that work with the K-12 schools to build community support. NREL worked with CSU to develop its curriculum and with the National Energy Education Development Project to develop a K-12 curriculum.

Learn more about Wind for Schools.