Local students unite to build electric cars for a major racing event

green|spaces’ annual event, the Green Prix, transforms the UTC sports complex next to Engel Stadium on May 6 and 7 into a fully functioning racecourse. Take a good look – the racing cars and drivers might surprise you!

Sponsored by EPB, the event features 35 teams of Hamilton County students, ages 9-18, racing electric vehicles (EVs) that they designed and built themselves.

This hands-on STEM program depends on the help of teachers and parent coaches. Nevertheless, it is the responsibility of the students to design, build and test their electric vehicles. As a result, students complete the program with a fundamental understanding of electrical wiring and mechanics.

“The Green Award is not only a fun event, it’s also a key part of our regional workforce development needs,” said Michael Walton, CEO of green|spaces. “Students can graduate with eight years of hands-on experience in one of the highest-paying and fastest-growing industries in the world.”

“EPB is proud to sponsor the Green Award as part of our ongoing efforts to raise awareness of the benefits of electric vehicles as the automotive industry accelerates the shift to electric vehicles,” said EPB’s Ken Jones, who is the outgoing chairman. of the board of directors of green|spaces. “Electric vehicles offer many benefits for our community as a whole. The adoption of electric vehicles supports local jobs and economic development in addition to environmental benefits. »

Additionally, students leave the program with honed communication, problem-solving, and teamwork skills. Coach Kaitlyn Rhoden of Lookout Valley Elementary School agrees, “The best part of coaching is watching the kids learn to build, drive and present as a team. The excitement on race day is my favorite part, but most importantly, it’s amazing to see the students supporting each other.

In 2017, green|spaces worked with eight local elementary, middle and high schools to have students design and build GreenPower USA electric race cars. Now in more than 40 area schools, Green Prix combines STEM education with solving real-world problems and preparing the future workforce in a wide range of applicable careers.

Come cheer on the teams on May 6 and 7 at the UTC Sports Complex (500 O’Neal Street). The Green Prize is open to the public and free. Parking is on the grounds of the UT Erlanger family practice. Qualifying races begin at 1:50 p.m. on Friday and Saturday.

To visit www.greenspaceschattanooga.org/chattanooga-green-price to know more. To view images from the fall race, visit: https://bit.ly/GreenPrixFall

In addition to EPB, the Lyndhurst Foundation, Fullgraf Foundation, Gestamp, Novonix, Chattanooga Breakfast Rotary, Greater Chattanooga Robotics (TN Valley), Chattanooga Sports, Rockridge Venture Law, University of Chattanooga Tennessee, and Harbor Freight help make the Green Prize a success. Additionally, the event could not have taken place without the direction and guidance of the Chattanooga Region Sports Car Club of America throughout the year.

Volunteers are always needed to help with the event. To volunteer, visit https://bit.ly/VolunteerGreenPrix. To learn more about sponsoring future races, email Tj Tate at tj@greenspaceschattanooga.org.

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