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HOUSTON and DALLAS -- Two major oil companies -- Shell Oil Products U.S. and ExxonMobil Corp. -- designed events to challenge and encourage students to pursue futures in the energy industry.
On April 10 to 13, 2008, Shell is hosting the Shell Eco-Marathon Americas, which will see 50 student teams from North and South America compete to travel the farthest distance on the least amount of fuel, to break the 1,902.7 miles per gallon record set by Cal Poly San Luis Obispo this year.
"Shell is working aggressively to help meet the energy challenge head-on and long-term, and we understand the importance of encouraging technology and innovation in the minds of tomorrow's leaders and engineers," David Sexton, president of Shell Oil Products U.S., said in a statement. "The Shell Eco-marathon promotes fuel efficiency, and we're challenging students from North and South America to build environmentally friendly vehicles to inspire future transportation."
The 2008 Shell Eco-marathon Americas will be held at the California Speedway in Fontana, Calif.
Students manage the entire project, from vehicle design to financing, in an effort to gain experience while applying skills in science, technology, mathematics, business and design, according to the company.
"The innovation that comes from these students is inspiring," said Sexton. "As Shell continues to aggressively look at new environmentally and socially responsible ways to meet future energy needs, it's clear some of the biggest contributions to sustainable mobility will come from today's youth. Programs like the Shell Eco-marathon are an investment in our future."
The winning team will receive a grand prize of $10,000 awarded to its educational institution. There are also prizes for vehicles in various fuel categories -- combustion engine, fuel cell/hydrogen and solar.
In other community service news, ExxonMobil encouraged young women to strive for higher education math, science and engineering careers through a partnership with Girls Inc., which held the ExxonMobil Family Math and Science Night earlier this week at the Girls Inc. Love Field Center.
"ExxonMobil has a long-term commitment to math and science education and proudly partners with organizations, such as Girls Inc., that showcase the interesting and exciting side of these fields," Truman Bell, senior program officer for education and diversity for the ExxonMobil Foundation, said in a statement. "Through events such as ExxonMobil Family Math and Science Night, we hope to spark interest in math, science and engineering among young people while engaging their families to be actively involved in their child's pursuit of education."
The event was part of Girls Inc.'s Operation SMART (Science, Math and Relevant Technology) program, which invited girls ages 6 through 11 and their families to participate in math and science workshops and talk with ExxonMobil volunteers about their careers, the company stated.
In addition, teens in the program led a "Women in Science" game show, while "Parent Corners" provided information for parents on college preparation helping their daughters explore match, science and engineering subjects.