Engineering students from West Virginia University – currently constructing a fully functional GM hybrid vehicle – recognize the importance of reaching out to young people and educating them about the growing impact of sustainable resources on their futures.

On Thursday, Nov. 19, students from WVU’s School of Engineering will talk to 5th and 6th graders at East Park Elementary school in Fairmont at 9:30 a.m. and to 3rd and 4th graders at Skyview Elementary school in Morgantown at 2:00 p.m.

Their goal will be to inform students about what it means to be eco-friendly and about the EcoCAR competition in which they are currently participating.

WVU is one of 17 schools in the nation that has been chosen to participate in the three-year EcoCAR competition sponsored by the U.S. Department of Energy and General Motors, and managed by Argonne National Laboratory. The students are currently in their second year of the competition.

The EcoCAR team’s aim is to create a hybrid vehicle that uses biodiesel fuel and gets 38 mpg highway and 36 mpg city, while still keeping consumer appeal.

“Our students are tackling issues in this competition that could shape the next generation of hybrid vehicles. The outcome of this competition could be sitting in your driveway in five years,” said Dr. Scott Wayne, EcoCAR faculty advisor.

The EcoCAR team, comprised mostly of engineers, also integrates public relations students from the Perley Isaac Reed School of Journalism and a marketing student from the school of Business and Economics to help coordinate outreach activities.

The EcoCAR team is dedicated to creating a car that will decrease carbon gas emissions and have less of a harmful impact on the environment. Their aspiration is to educate young people about the opportunities they have to work towards a greener future.



CONTACT: Nicole Fernandes, Outreach Coordinator, EcoCAR: The NeXt Challenge