Mercer Island High's solar panel project is 'Grade A' | Editorial

The triumphant ribbon-cutting ceremony to celebrate the installation of solar panels at Mercer Island High School last Friday once again illustrates the very best of our community. The idea to install working solar panels at the high school is not far-fetched or unusual; instead, it is the exercise and process that brought the panels to the roof of the school commons that is noteworthy. First and foremost, credit for the project goes to Mercer Island High School senior Harry Bolson, who took on the idea as his culminating project. Since 2008, a successful and well-documented culminating project has been a requirement for receiving a diploma in this state. The requirement stipulates that students methodically explore a topic of interest, document their search and experimentation, and present the fruits of their labors to their classmates, teachers and the community. Bolson did that and more.

The success of this project was also due in large part to community members. Bolson had mentors that included teachers and administrators as well as others with solar energy expertise and more. Those individuals and others donated money and time to the project, no doubt recognizing its fortuitous location at the high school as a clever way to nurture and develop similar projects and green behaviors in young people. As a whole, the project serves as another concrete effort to encourage the greening sensibilities of Islanders, as well as to encourage the community to work together toward similar goals which include self-sufficiency for our Island community in times of disaster.

The goals and objectives behind the senior culminating project requirement were met and exceeded by this project. Grade A.

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