ComEd kicked off its 2nd annual Icebox Derby on July 25 with a diverse group of 13-to-18-year-olds whose teams stand a chance to take home the STEM Cup, scholarship money, and other prizes. The Icebox Derby is a four-week long, hands-on competition designed to empower young women to explore opportunities in STEM. The participants work in teams to build race cars from old refrigerators, and the race takes place on August 15, 2015 at 2:00PM Central Time.
[RELATED: Celebrate Girls Day of Code on August 8]
While women receive more than half of all bachelor’s degrees awarded in the biological sciences, they receive far fewer in the computer sciences, engineering, physics,, mathematics and statistics, according to data from the National Girls Collaborative Project. Women currently hold 24% of the science, technology, engineering and math (STEM) jobs in America and ComEd, along with partners Girls4Science, Girl Scouts of Greater Chicago and Northwest Indiana, the Chicago Urban League, and Operation PUSH, wants to see that number increased.
“As technology continues to change our world, we are dedicated to helping these young, talented women see all the possibilities that lie before them, including future careers here at ComEd,” said Anne Pramaggiore, ComEd’s president and CEO.
By leveraging ComEd’s own Fridge & Freezer Recycling Rewards program aimed at driving energy efficiency, ComEd’s Icebox Derby supports the company’s commitment to creating sustainable and innovative solutions for the region.
On Saturday, August 15, the teams will put their cars to the test in a head-to-head race on Field Museum Circle Drive in front of Chicago’s acclaimed Museum of Science Industry. Win or lose, each derby contestant will receive at least one $1,000 scholarship for completing the program. Prizes for the first place winners will be revealed at a later date.
By sharing one of the ComEd videos using #IceboxDerby and the video link, anyone can help grow the ComEd Spark Fund, created for the derby. Individuals can share only two videos per computer, per day, to add up to a maximum of $600 in additional scholarship money per participant. ComEd is pledging up to $70,000 to help send Chicagoland teens to college.
Members of last year’s winning team, Sonic Doom, are scheduled to attend a week-long camp at National Flight School in Pensacola, Florida, this July. Find out more about the program by visiting www.theiceboxderby.com or searching hashtag #IceboxDerby.
ComEd’s Icebox Derby is intended to help increase interest and awareness in STEM amongst girls by providing a hands-on educational platform. Participants work closely with mentors – technical experts from ComEd and college students studying STEM fields – to learn about practical applications of STEM in the world and in the workforce. Important lessons about teamwork and safety are also closely tied to this initiative.
Visit TheIceboxderby.com on Tumblr to share ComEd content.