University of Hawaii System newsletter

ʻImiloa Science Summer Camps Get Support

Posted on | July 29, 2011 | Comments Off on ʻImiloa Science Summer Camps Get Support

student building models

Summer camp participants construct geothermal models. Photos courtesy of ʻImiloa Astronomy Center

Hilo’s ʻImiloa Astronomy Center of Hawaiʻi received a $5,000 gift from Puna Geothermal Venture and its parent company Ormat. The gift helped to subsidize program tuition costs for local schoolchildren to attend ʻImiloa’s Summer Camp programs focused on sustainable technology. The gift will also enable ʻImiloa to expand its outreach into school classrooms in the Keaʻau, Pāhoa and Puna areas of the Big Island.

“We appreciate the investment and commitment Puna Geothermal Venture and Ormat has made to the community through their gift in support of summer camp programs at ʻImiloa,” says Kaʻiu Kimura, executive director of ʻImiloa Astronomy Center. “These programs are important because they help engage our local schoolchildren in the concepts of science, technology, engineering and math in meaningful and relevant ways. It was exciting to see children’s faces light up when the engineering designs they worked so diligently on were tested and found to be successful—we live for those moments.”

Boys and girls between grades 5–8 had the opportunity to create geothermal plant models using hydrodynamics kits that taught them about valve technology, turbines and pumps. Those with successful models were awarded engineering “contracts” for their engineering prowess. Children also had the opportunity to experiment with fuel cell car kits and even build a take-home wind turbine kit.

Read the news release.