Northeast Metro 916 Intermediate School District

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Construction Occupations teacher celebrates completed house and energy certification

Construction Occupations Teacher Congratulations to Tom Spehn, Career and Technical Center Construction Occupations teacher for completing a rigorous twelve credit course through Hamline University School of Education’s Graduate Continuing Studies Program and the CREED (Center for Renewable Energy Education and Demonstration) Project and its collaborators. The completion of this effort has led to an Energy Education Certificate that was presented to Spehn on November 26, 2014.

The CREED Project is a 501(c)(3) nonprofit providing energy education to science, mathematics and technical education teachers at the middle and high school levels. It is the only organization of its kind in Minnesota and derives its funding from utilities and energy companies who sponsor teachers in their service districts. The project’s long-term goal is to provide teachers with content training in energy, with an emphasis on energy efficiency improvement and the development of renewable energy resources, so that they can embed this into their curriculum. By doing this, the hope is that students, and consequently their families and friends, will become motivated to conserve and invest in solar and other renewables, as well as get them excited about careers in this growing field. There is going to be an increasing need for STEM (Science, Technology, Engineering and Mathematics) skilled young people in energy jobs in the next couple of decades and the CREED project provides STEM-rich instruction.

Roger Aiken, CREED’s Lead Instructor Emeritus presented Spehn with a CREED Certificate and spoke highly of his hard work. "Our instruction is STEM rich and requires high commitment and a lot of hard work on the part of teachers to complete. Tom deserves of a lot of credit and he brings honor to Northeast Metro 916." To date, over 200 teachers have participated in CREED’s energy education course/workshops.

Aiken, acting for Hamline University, also conferred their Energy Education Certificate for Spehn’s 12 graduate credit effort. “This certification strengthens Tom's science background and provides him the opportunity to enrich the curriculum he guides students through in the district,” he adds.

The Minnesota Soybean Research and Development Council and Andersen Corporation each provided $2,500 in 2012 and 2013 respectively to sponsor Spehn’s attendance at the Laurentian Environmental Center to assist with the costs associated with his certification.

SOLD! 2014 completed construction occupations house

On the day before Thanksgiving, staff, students and community members celebrated the completion and sale of the 2013-14 Construction Occupations class project of a single family home in North St. Paul. The home was built completely by students, allowing them to experience all aspects of the construction process. The project was made possible through partnerships with the City of North St. Paul and Century College.