YES! Quarterly
Winter/Spring 2015
Spring means lots of growth, both outside and for our YES! teams.  As we head into the Spring Judging season we want to share with you what some of our YES! teams are accomplishing, what they learned at the recent Winter Workshops, and what one alumnus of YES! is up to nowadays.  We are also excited to announce two new staff members and a new YES! partner.  

Please read on to hear all about these exciting developments! 
The YES! Staff

YES! Winter WorkshopsWinterWorkshops   


YES! students and experts Bryan Stading and Shane Bowyer examine products made by the WWG YES! team and discuss entrepreneurship at the Mankato Winter Workshop
Over 200 students and coaches participated in the 10 unique Winter Workshops offered this season--the most workshops we have ever hosted!  They learned from over 50 experts as well as their peers and utilized hands-on learning, tours, and discussions to acquire knowledge and plan for the success of their projects. 

Read more about what the students learned at:  

YES! in ActionTeams   



The Springfield YES! team has been very busy this year working on projects in four main categories: a clean water fundraiser on May 8th entitled "Say YES! to Clean Water", environmental education at Springfield Elementary, a YES! week at their school, and a used clothing collection drive.  Read more about their projects.   


DREAM Technical Academy 

DREAM Technical Academy, a new charter school, is funding their YES! projects through a campus-wide can collection. They are analyzing their school's energy usage with a YES! kit and then cutting their school's energy usage with a blackout day, and, thanks to a grant from the Southwest Initiative Foundation, they are building a compost tumbler!  Read more here.  


St. Cloud Apollo


The Apollo High School YES! Team was already ahead of the curve when they began a partnership with Tri-County Organics to introduce composting in their school, but they really changed the game when they created an educational film to show their peers how and why to use the new bins.  Since the launch of their video, they have been diverting nearly 3 cubic yards of organic waste a day from the landfill.  That's three full-size tractor buckets headed back to the earth as rich soil!  Watch the video and read more on our website


Northern Lights Community School

The YES! team from the Northern Lights Community School is going to use their school's greenhouse more efficiently, growing fruits and vegetables for their lunchroom and selling the extra produce via a CSA to raise money for future YES! projects.  In addition, they calculated how much waste was being generated by milk cartons, so they purchased a milk dispenser. Read more about their initiatives to impact their school, environment, and community. 


YES! Alumnus Highlight by Aaron LarsonAlumni   


Willmar YES! Alumnus Aaron Larson managing the Willmar greenhouse

The Willmar Community Greenhouse project was started in 2007 by the Willmar YES! team, a team I joined in 2008 as a senior in high school. The project's main goal is to educate the community about renewable energy and locally grown food.  This goal is continually accomplished, as we are growing produce inside and outside the greenhouse year round, even during the middle of winter. 


After high school I have continued to be involved with YES! and the greenhouse project. The YES! team planted the seed and the greenhouse continues to grow. Today I manage the greenhouse as part of a new project with the Willmar Becker Market to market and sell fresh local produce year-round to local businesses...I am very glad and thankful to have had the opportunity to be a part of YES! and continue to grow at the greenhouse.


The YES! Family is GrowingStaff 
We are excited to welcome two new YES! Coordinators and a new YES! Partner to the YES! family: 

Katelyn Larsen
Katelyn Larsen, YES! Coordiantor
Katelyn is a YES! Coordinator in Southern MN and will be working from Ney Nature Center in Henderson, MN.  Katelyn says, "I look forward to meeting everyone involved in YES! and seeing how we can grow this program together."  Read more about Katelyn

Sarah Gainey 

Sarah will be joining YES! as a Coordinator for the Central Minnesota YES! teams starting May 15th.  She will be working out of Saint John's Outdoor University where she is also the Environmental Education Coordinator.  Read more about Sarah.

Saint John's Outdoor University  

Saint John's Outdoor University provides environmental and outdoor education through classes, events, and initiatives with the Abbey Arboretum, Saint John's University, and the College of Saint Benedict. Using the more than 2500 acres of lakes, prairie, oak savannah and forest of the Abbey Arboretum, Outdoor U seeks to create environmentally-literate citizens connected to the natural world.  
Did You Know...Didyouknow

YES! is excited to promote a fundraiser that allows our teams to reduce, reuse, recycle, help people around the world, reduce their carbon footprint, and help YES! teams fund their projects!  7 of our teams are participating thus far.  Read all about the World Wear Project here.

In This Issue
Winter Workshops
YES! In Action
Alumnus Highlight
New YES! Coordinators
Did You Know...
Quick Links

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YES! empowers youth to partner with their community to create economic and environmental vitality through hands-on learning and team-based projects.
YES! provides a unique opportunity for students to learn by engaging directly in community efforts that lead to dramatic demonstrations of renewable energy technology and conservation practices and exposes them to how science is applied in real life.

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