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Careers in Motion — Energy
        page 4                                                                                                 electronic edition:

                    SteM future is Bright at fontana elementary

                                            school library for the 2021–2022 school year   design, CAD software, and career and college   Fontana  Elementary  School  had  its  roots  in
                                            to  add  a  fab  lab  featuring  3D  printers,  laser   readiness.     several years of discussions with Torrez.
                                            cutters and “greater access to greater technol-  The  recently-announced  shared  grant   “We  donated  part  of  the  array,  with  a
                                            ogy for the kids.”                 award for the 2022–2023 school year, Torrez   grant from the state for part of the array and
                                               The fab lab is under the direction of librar-  said, came out of a “partnership with Big Foot   the balance the school has agreed to pay,” he
                                            ian  and  21st  Century  coordinator  Annelise   to  expand  and  allow  some  connection  from   noted. “It was a collaborative one third, one
                                            Gutierrez.                         middle school into high school.”    third, one third share. Living here in the com-
                                               Torrez  said  an  Elkhorn-based  furniture   “That will hopefully expand not only the   munity, it’s a good opportunity to give a little
                                            manufacturer assisted Fontana Joint 8 School   opportunities for our kids, but also carry over   something back.”
                                            District with writing last year’s grant and later   what  they  learned  here  into  high  school  and   Kivlin  said  the  “small  demonstration
                                            assisted  the  school  with  the  redesign  of  the   beyond,” he noted.  system”  solar  array  will  provide  educators
                                            library space for the fab lab facility. The firm   Part  of  Fontana  Elementary  School’s   with  monitoring  and  performance  data  to
                                            also assisted with the purchase and set-up of   fab lab technology expansion, Torrez said, is   explain how solar works and allow students to
                                            fab lab design software and equipment includ-  student exposure to green energy engineering   see real-time performance.
                                            ing  3D  printers  and  laser  cutters,  as  well  as   and  future  STEM  employment  opportunities   “There’s some good opportunities for the
                                            professional  development  for  school  staff   through the school’s collaboration with a Lake   kids to look at it and form questions of their
                                            involved with the fab lab.         Geneva-based commercial and industrial solar   own that will lead to who knows what,” Kivlin
                                               Among  the  cross-curricular  connections   developer,  which  installed  a  small  rooftop   said.
                                            to  arise  out  of  the  fab  lab,  Torrez  noted,  is   solar array at the school in April.  “Scientists and engineers of the future,”
                                            use of the fab lab for art applications, includ-  “The array of opportunities and employ-  Torrez replied.
            Taken  in  part  from  “Fab-ulous  news:   ing  educational  decorative  wall  designs  for   ment that come with solar is diverse,” Torrez   “Or in the present,” Kivlin said.
        Big  Foot  High  School,  Fontana  Elementary   the pre-school area and the creation of t-shirt   said. “It’s not just green energy and solar, it’s
        receive joint $32,399 WEDC grant to update,   apparel for band, sports and other groups.  engineering, it’s construction, it’s developing,
        expand fab lab facilities” by Eric Johnson for   Other  technology  offerings  at  Fontana   it’s building, it’s typography. We’re just trying
        the Lake Geneva Regional News       Elementary School, Torrez said, includes the   to layer-up and expose kids to multi-multi-fac-
            Fontana  Elementary  School  principal   school’s drone club and a curriculum expan-  eted opportunities that come with it.”
        Steve Torrez said a grant awarded last spring   sion  partnership  with  their  local  technical   Solar  developer  president,  John  Kivlin,
        funded a reconfiguration and redesign of the   college  in  areas  including  drone  flight,  3D   said  development  of  the  small  solar  array  at

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