For the Star Journal
Rhinelander High School (RHS) Technology & Engineering teacher Russ Germain has been named the 2016 Secondary Energy Educator of the Year Award through KEEP due to his energy education efforts and successes in the School District of Rhinelander. This award recognizes individuals who are taking the extra step to improve energy literacy among students and teachers by helping learners gain the knowledge and skills needed to analyze and resolve energy issues while making wise energy decisions.
Mr. Germain was nominated by former RHS teacher Adam Matyska. Here is how Mr. Matyska describes Mr. Germain and his accomplishments…
“Russ Germain has been teaching Building Trades in the Technology Education Department at Rhinelander High School for over seventeen years, teaching on average 50 students annually. Since taking over as Building Trades Coordinator in 2004, he has overseen the construction of a different structure each school year, including residential structures as well as Rhinelander’s School Forest Environmental Education Center. His goal for each building has been to make it as energy efficient as possible, while in the process educating students on current best practices in energy efficient material advances and construction techniques.”
Matyska goes on to say…
“Mr. Germain teams with local contractors, utilities, and programs such as Focus on Energy in constructing a building every year, in order to give his students real-world, applied techniques in making energy efficient structures. Mr. Germain goes above and beyond the norm in his concern for energy efficiency. The energy efficient qualities, materials, and techniques employed in each home are displayed during an annual community open house, where students lead parents, teachers, and the community on tours of the structure. Local television, radio, and print media also cover the home-building process every year, further publicizing (and thus educating) the energy efficient qualities of these student-built structures.”
In recognition of Mr. Germain’s contributions to energy education, a $500 award will be sent to RHS to support the ongoing educational efforts.
Mr. Germain will be recognized and presented his award at the Celebration of Excellence in Environmental Education Awards Banquet on April 30 at Riveredge Nature Center in Saukville.