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Millikan Energy Lessons Earn National Prize

As gasoline prices soar well beyond $3 per gallon, a Millikan High School student project on alternative energy sources has won a national award. The Robert A. Millikan Student Energy Team, or RAMSET, won the National Senior Level School of the Year Award in the National Energy Education Development (NEED) competition. Millikan earned first place among similar groups in over 40 states. The award will be presented in Washington, D.C. at the Department of the Interior during a June 23-26 conference. The RAMSET project includes 40 students in ninth and tenth grades who are advised by science teacher Woody Williams. With the help of a $25,000 grant from BP last year, the students began obtaining equipment and training needed to teach lessons on energy transformation, energy conservation, wind energy, solar energy and fuel cells. The students travel in teams of three to four, visiting elementary schools, where they provide hands-on lessons on energy. The high school students have visited 45 local elementary classrooms. The Millikan students also have worked each Saturday since December constructing a solar powered boat, which will race at Lake Skinner in Temecula this month. "They are such great leaders," Williams said of his students. "I can’t believe the hours they’ve put into this." The non-profit NEED organization was started in 1980 to promote understanding of the scientific, economic and environmental impacts of energy. RAMSET is accepting donations to assist with airline travel, registration and lodging for the students’ trip to D.C. Contributions may be made to RAMSET and sent to Woody Williams care of Robert A. Millikan High School, 2800 Snowden Ave., Long Beach 90815. The Federal Tax ID number is 95-4636770.