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The Raider Riders have been named finalists in the 2013 Siemens "We Can Change the World Challenge" for their project promoting bike riding as an alternative to driving vehicles. Pictured are, from left, Mira Manchanda, teacher and mentor Chris Deleon, Taylor Buldra and Lucia Rinta.

HMS students honored by Siemens Foundation for environmental project

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The Siemens Foundation, Discovery Education, the National Science Teachers Association (NSTA) and the College Board have named a team of middle school students from Hudson Middle School finalists in the 2013 Siemens We Can Change the World Challenge.

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Team Raider Riders was named a finalist for its project on the promotion of bike riding as an alternative to driving automobiles.

The team is mentored by HMS science teacher Chris DeLeon and includes Mira Manchanda, teacher and mentor Chris Deleon, Taylor Buldra and Lucia Rinta.

Middle school students from across the country competed in this year's challenge.

Under the guidance of a teacher, students were tasked with identifying an environmental issue in their community, and creating a replicable green solution using web-based curriculum tools powered by Discovery Education.

The Wisconsin finalists from Hudson decided to take on the challenge of reducing carbon dioxide in their community. The team focused its efforts on promoting bike riding as an alternative to driving automobiles.

It started a free bike redistribution program called the "Raider Rider Re-Ride" through which community members can recycle their unwanted bikes. The team also encouraged people to ride bikes and taught peers about the hazards of carbon dioxide in the environment. 

As part of a rigorous three-part judging process, a panel of environmental advocates and science educators selected finalists based on the project's ability to creatively present a viable solution to some of today's greatest environmental challenges. Each member of the Raider Riders will receive a finalist certificate and a Siemens We Can Change the World Challenge green prize pack. Hudson Middle School will also receive a congratulatory Siemens We Can Change the World Challenge banner. 

"These students are the new environmental guardians for our planet and will help advance policy and technological improvements that will help protect the world around us," said Jeniffer Harper-Taylor, president of the Siemens Foundation. "The ideas we're seeing from these young students are amazing and impactful. The Siemens Foundation and its partners are proud to honor these students and their mentors for their commitment to environmental change." 

The national K-12 challenge is designed to encourage students to tackle environmental issues in their own communities and to seek solutions to those problems.

More than 80,000 of today's youth have participated in the Challenge since its introduction, proving themselves as "Agents of Change" in their own communities.

As a result of the challenge, past students have been able to change their schools' policies, open up their neighborhoods to new ideas and even inspired politicians to craft green legislation on both the state and national level. 

For more information on the challenge, the state finalists and their projects, visitwww.wecanchange.com.

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