Press Release: New partnership for Eco-Schools

Alcoa Foundation, FEE Eco-Schools and National Wildlife Federation Partner Together on Global “Green STEM” Initiative


Contact: Bríd Conneely, Eco-Schools International, +45 61248084


Copenhagen, Denmark (9 August 2016) – Thanks to the generous support of Alcoa Foundation, Foundation for Environmental Education’s (FEE) Eco-Schools programme has launched a global K-12 environmental literacy initiative focused on Green STEM. The project will educate children about environmental issues through science, technology, engineering and maths skills, in collaboration with National Wildlife Federation - FEE’s member organisation in the USA - and America’s largest wildlife conservation and education organisation. This initiative is entitled Alcoa W3 (which stands for Waste-Water-Watts) and will initially span four countries and three states.

Daniel Schaffer, CEO of FEE said: “The overarching goal of the Alcoa W3 project is to improve student/teacher environmental literacy; reduce the environmental impact and use of natural resources of the school; and improve student engagement in hands-on, experiential Green STEM disciplines through the project-based learning afforded by our Eco-Schools framework.”  He added: “Green STEM is a sure way of increasing teacher knowledge on how to incorporate knowledge of the environment into their curricula and lesson plans, and I’m really looking forward to seeing how this project will provide opportunities for Alcoa employees to engage with schools in action-oriented events.”

“In the near future, the job market will include entirely new career paths focused on addressing climate change, increasing energy efficiency, reducing waste, and managing water,” said Collin O’Mara, President and CEO for the National Wildlife Federation. “The tremendous support we have received from Alcoa Foundation will ultimately help us reach kids globally and prepare them for these new Green STEM jobs—and help them better understand the world around them.”

Green STEM utilises project-based learning to provide students with authentic, real-life environmental and sustainability issues to tackle while emphasizing 21st century skills development like critical thinking, problem solving, cooperation, communication and teamwork. And it does this within the context of the students’ own communities, making the experience more relevant, inspiring, and engaging. 

FEE’s internationally acclaimed Eco-Schools programme provides a framework to help educators integrate sustainability principles throughout their schools and curriculum and provides a model for environmentally sound practices, enhancing science and academic achievement.

Over the next 12 months, NWF and FEE Eco-Schools will work collaboratively in the U.S. Brazil, Australia, Italy and Norway to deliver the Alcoa W3 project across 40 schools — 30 internationally, 10 in the United States.

“Alcoa Foundation has been a longtime supporter of STEM education and environmental science and literacy initiatives,” said Esra Ozer, President, Alcoa Foundation. “The world needs leaders who are prepared for the challenges of an evolving economy, and working with NWF and FEE will help lend students and their teachers the added support and training they need to make an impact in communities across the globe.”

Through this project, twenty thousand students in Australia, Brazil, Norway and Italy, and in Texas, North Carolina and New York in the United States, will be given opportunities to assess, design, and build innovative solutions to environmental challenges.


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About The Foundation for Environmental Education and Eco-Schools

The Foundation for Environmental Education (FEE) was launched in 1981 and went on to create the Eco-Schools programme in 1994 with support from the European Commission.  Eco-Schools was identified by the United Nations Environment Program (UNEP) as a model initiative for Education for Sustainable Development in 2003.  Currently, there are over 62 countries around the world participating in the programme.  Follow FEE on Facebook and @FEEInt on Twitter. Follow Eco-Schools on Facebook and @EcoSchoolsInt on Twitter.


About National Wildlife Federation

The National Wildlife Federation (NWF) is America's largest wildlife conservation and education organisation, uniting all Americans to ensure wildlife thrive in a rapidly changing world.  In December 2008, NWF was granted host status for the K-12 Eco-Schools programme in the United States by The Foundation for Environmental Education (FEE).  In America, the programme is known as “Eco-Schools USA.”  Follow us on Facebook, Twitter, and Instagram.


About the Alcoa Foundation

Alcoa Foundation is one of the largest corporate foundations in the U.S., with assets of approximately $480 million.  Founded 64 years ago, Alcoa Foundation has invested more than $635 million in communities worldwide.  In 2015, Alcoa Foundation contributed more than $22 million to nonprofit organisations throughout the world, building innovative partnerships to improve the environment and educate tomorrow's leaders for careers in manufacturing and engineering.  The work of Alcoa Foundation is further enhanced by Alcoa's thousands of employee volunteers who share their talents and time to make a difference in the communities where Alcoa operates.  Through the Company's signature Month of Service program, in 2015, 47 percent of Alcoa employees took part in 1,000 events across 24 countries, benefiting more than 300,000 people and 400 nonprofit organisations.  For more information, visit and follow @AlcoaFoundation on Twitter.

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