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Groundbreaking for new Power Global STEM classroom on Tuesday

Posted: 5:37 AM, Dec 17, 2019
Updated: 2019-12-17 07:37:53-05

BOISE, Idaho — The Peregrine Fund is about to break ground on an exciting project that will bring the world of bird conservation to twice as many students per year thanks to POWER Engineers, Inc. (POWER) and the POWER Foundation.

The Peregrine Fund’s World Center for Birds of Prey is about to break ground on a new state-of-the-art space that’s designed to inspire the next generation of scientists, conservationists, and environmental visionaries. The new space was designed by Hatch Design Architecture and will be built by Jordan-Wilcomb Construction, Inc.

The new Global STEM Classroom, funded by a $100,000 pledge from the POWER Foundation, will connect students with biologists in the field around the world who are working to help humans and vulnerable raptors co-exist. The foundation formed in 2012 to support POWER’s philanthropic goals, including promoting STEAM education.

“This classroom will give us the opportunity to take children on global field trips where they will talk to and learn from biologists who are actually in the field,” said Erin Katzner, the Peregrine Fund’s director of global engagement. “Imagine a child getting to join our scientists as they’re perched in a tree in the rainforests of Panama, watching a Harpy Eagle nest! Our hope is that this will inspire the next generation of conservationists and scientists – that kids will start to see themselves as scientists who can change the future for the better.”

The classroom is part of the Peregrine Fund’s HATCHED campaign, an expansion of the World Center that will include 11 new outdoor bird exhibits, a new Global Raptor Education Welcome Center, an outdoor amphitheater and more parking. The expansion aims to accommodate visitor growth which has increased by 42% in the past five years, said campaign director Heather Meuleman.

“We’re bursting at the seams,” she said. “Last school year, we turned away 1,800 students. This STEM classroom more than doubles our current learning space and gives us room to grow in the coming decades so we can continue to increase our educational impact across the Treasure Valley.”

In addition to the Foundation’s pledge, POWER has provided pro-bono structural, electrical and mechanical engineering for the new space.

“Supplementing our grant with pro-bono engineering work was a natural evolution,” said Jim Haynes, POWER’s chief administrative officer and the Foundation’s board president. “It’s been exciting for us to not only financially support the center’s expansion, but also to have a vital hands-on role in helping the plans come to life.”

The Peregrine Fund is still accepting donations to the HATCHED Campaign. To learn more, contact Meuleman at hmeuleman@peregrinefund.org