Supporting Our Local Schools for Over 85 Years
To live up to our cooperative principles of concern for community and commitment to education, we here at Sussex Rural Electric strive to giving students the tools they need to succeed in life. Detailed below are our School and Scout Support programs. These include educational presentations for various grade levels as well as field trips to Sussex Rural Electric Cooperative's office so students and scout troops can see the business of an electric utility up close. In addition, we offer scholarships and awards for high school students, along with participation in the Youth Tour trip for eligible high school juniors. You can find details on all of these programs below.
Whether for pre-K, elementary school, middle school, or high school students, those seeking college degrees or certifications, local teachers, or scouts and troop leaders, the Co-op can always be a trusted resource. If you are a teacher, scout leader, or parent interested in taking part in one of the free programs below, please contact our office at 973-875-5101.
Sussex Rural Electric Cooperative Educational Presentations
As part of its support for our local students, Sussex Rural Electric Cooperative offers an electrical safety program that gives students the opportunity to learn about the electricity through a presentation given by employees at a local, member-owned rural electric cooperative. Local elementary school teachers and educators can schedule an opportunity for Sussex Rural Electric Cooperative employees to visit their class(es) and relay to them information on electricity and energy sources, electric utilities, and safety around electricity.
Our educational program can be tailored to any grade level and customized to fit into any energy-related lesson plan your class is being taught. Through a detailed and engaging PowerPoint presentation, our program delivers a wide variety of information about electricity. Students will have the opportunity to learn about sources of power generation, how electricity is distributed, the job of a lineman, and a variety of information on electric safety at home. We have found that students of all ages have a lot of curiosity about electricity, so students are encouraged to ask questions throughout the presentation as long as there is ample time remaining. This presentation makes use of our award-winning electric safety mascot Pluggy the Pug to make the process of learning about energy and safety more fun!
Given permission from parents, an SREC employee will take pictures of the presentation and the class to be shared with teachers. Some pictures may be used for Sussex Rural Electric Cooperative's social media accounts. We will make accommodations to avoid taking pictures of students who do not have parental permission to be photographed.
If available, an SREC lineman will accompany the presenters. Our lineman will answer questions from the class about linework and more in-depth inquiries about electricity. He can also bring along a bag of a lineworker's tools and gear, some of which can be passed around for the class to see up-close. Given enough space to park, we can even bring a bucket truck to your school, which the class can come outside to see and to pose with for a group picture.
When the presentation concludes, teachers may be given "care packages" for every student. Depending on the age group of the students, this can include items like stickers, a plastic "hard hat," a certificate of achievement in electric safety, and "Pluggy's Power Patrol," an SREC-produced booklet, starring Pluggy, filled with fun activities that cover topics from the presentation and more. By taking these items home, we hope that each student will have a positive memory of the experience and will bring what they learned about energy efficiency and electric safety home with them.
As a member-owned utility, school presentations are provided by Sussex Rural Electric Cooperative free of charge. If you're an educator interested in having SREC employees come to your school for this presentation, you can contact us by phone at 973-875-5101 or by email at firstname.lastname@example.org. ALL school visits are free of charge.
SREC Beginner's Electric Safety Program
Electric Safety is very important regardless of age. Our young children are often the ones most vulnerable to electrocution from household items that others know to use safely. This is why Sussex Rural Electric Cooperative sponsors a program to teach our community's children about the dangers of electricity early in childhood.
Local preschool or kindergarten teachers can reach out to Sussex Rural Electric Cooperative to take part in this program. SREC employees will come to your school to give a beginner's lesson on electric safety.
Cooperative employees will make use of an SREC-produced picture book, starring our safety mascot Pluggy the Pug. This book provides important information about keeping safe around electricity in a fun way that is easy for young students to understand. Students can leave the presentation as members of Pluggy's Power Patrol, fully equipped to practice electric safety at home. At the end of the presentation, the teacher will be given a Pluggy plush to keep for their classroom to remind students of the lessons they've learned. This picture book can also be accessed online on our Pluggy's Power Patrol webpage.
Following the presentation, students will be given plastic hard hats to remind them to be safe around electricity. We sincerely hope that this program energizes the youngest members of our community to recognize the need for electric safety and avoid getting "ZAPPED!"
If you teach a preschool or kindergarten class or are involved in an equivalent program and would like to arrange a beginner's electric safety lesson at your school, feel free to call us at 973-875-5101 and ask for Claudia, or contact us by email at email@example.com. All school visits provided by Sussex Rural Electric Cooperative are free of charge.
Trips to Sussex Rural Electric Cooperative
At Sussex Rural Electric Cooperative, we strongly believe in fostering opportunities for students to learn outside of the classroom. Sussex Rural Electric Cooperative invites local grade school classes, as well as scout troops and home-schooled student groups, to our facilities as a destination for field trips. Teachers, scout leaders, and parents are encouraged to contact us to confirm availability.
The group will get to see the business behind a rural electric cooperative firsthand, guided through our office and warehouse area by the Cooperative's employees. The group will be gathered in our large conference room to be shown our educational presentation used in our elementary school visits. This conference room is capable of seating up to sixty individuals. Smaller groups can be accommodated in our smaller, upstairs conference room.
As with our educational trips to local schools, attending students or scouts will be taught about power generation, utility work, and electric safety. Presentations can be tailored to fit any age group and to support student groups' current lesson plans. The presentation also features our safety mascot, Pluggy the Pug. Students are encouraged to ask questions throughout the presentation, which may be answered by the presenter or a lineman participating in the program. Our lineman will pass around items such as his gloves and rubber sleeves to demonstrate the kind of protection a human body needs when working with electricity.
Given parental permission, pictures will be taken throughout the event to be shared with teachers afterwards. Select pictures may be used on Sussex Rural Electric Cooperative's social media accounts. If a student or scout lacks parental permission to be photographed, please let us know so we can avoid any issues.
When the presentation is over, teachers or scout leaders will receive "care packages" with materials to give out to each student or scout when the group leaves the Cooperative. Items include stickers, a certificate of excellence in electric safety, our "Pluggy's Power Patrol" activity book, and, of course, plastic hard hats. Teachers will receive a plush version of Pluggy the Pug to keep in their classrooms to remind students of everything they've learned as new members of Pluggy's Power Patrol.
If weather permits, one of our linemen will guide the group outside to see a bucket truck up close, with an option for a group picture, either in front of the bucket truck or taken from above!
As a member-owned utility, field trips to Sussex Rural Electric Cooperative's office are free of charge. We just simply ask that students and scouts are reminded to be courteous to those around them in a working environment like our office. Interested teachers or scout leaders can set up a field trip to the Cooperative by calling us at 973-875-5101 and asking for Claudia, or by contacting us by email at firstname.lastname@example.org.
Building the Next Generation of Leaders
Sussex Rural Electric Cooperative also offers a variety of programs to benefit high school students in our service territory!
Guest Speakers for the Classroom
High school teachers interested in giving their students perspective on energy, utility technology, or the history of rural electrification can request that an employee of Sussex Rural Electric Cooperative come in as a guest speaker. Depending on availability, an employee of SREC can visit your class, offer knowledge on topics such as energy generation and distribution, the history of rural electrification, or the cooperative business model, and answer questions from students. We are willing to work with you in order to determine what information would be most relevant to your class and would best reinforce your current lesson plan. If you are interested in learning more, you can call us at 973-875-5101 and ask for Claudia or you can send an email inquiry to email@example.com.
Students who reside in homes powered by Sussex Rural Electric Cooperative are also eligible to benefit from other Co-op sponsored programs as a benefit of their SREC membership.
High school juniors living in SREC-powered homes can apply for the National Rural Electric Youth Tour. Every year, SREC selects a group of local high school juniors to take on an all-expenses-paid trip to Washington, D.C. There, students will have the opportunity to explore our capital's museums, memorials, and monuments, speak with New Jersey's elected representatives, and meet other students from all over the country.
Sussex Rural Electric Cooperative has sponsored juniors from area high schools to embark on this journey since 1986. New Jersey students' trips are completely paid for by Sussex Rural Electric Cooperative. More than 1,500 students from all across America take part in this unforgettable experience each year. 2024's upcoming trip takes place from June 16th to June 21st. At this point in time, we are no longer accepting applications for 2024's Youth Tour trip.
Scholarships & Awards
High school seniors living in SREC-powered homes are eligible to apply for Sussex Rural Electric Cooperative's various Scholarships & Awards. We have several options available to eligible students, funded either through unclaimed capital credit monies that would have been escheated to the State or from our statewide and national associations. This year's scholarship and award offerings include:
- The James Howard Goodwin Scholarship - Provided by SREC to students seeking a college education after graduation. SREC offers up to three $2,000 scholarships each year. Applications are not yet open for the 2023-2024 school year.
- The SREC Trade School/Certification Scholarship - Provided by SREC to students pursuing a trade school or certification program after graduation. SREC offers up to two $2,000 scholarships each year. Applications are not yet open for the 2023-2024 school year.
- The Ray Cordts Community Champion Award - Provided by SREC to students who have demonstrated a commitment to working for the benefit of their community or their school. Pursuit of a college degree or certification after graduation is not required to receive this award. Each year, up to two students may receive this award. Selected students will receive a $500 award with an additional donation of $500 in their name going to an organization of their choice. Applications are not yet open for the 2023-2024 school year.
- The PREA Scholarship Trust Fund in Memory of William F. Matson - Provided by the Pennsylvania Rural Electric Association, this scholarship is available to sons and daughters of members and employees of SREC. Up to five $1,000 scholarships are offered each year to students from NJ or PA. Applications are not yet open for the 2023-2024 school year.
- The Jody Loudenslager Scholarship - Provided by the Pennsylvania Rural Electric Association, this scholarship is available to students that have attended the Youth Tour trip. Two $1,000 scholarships will be awarded yearly to Youth Tour alumni from NJ or PA. Awards are available for any year of college or master's program and can be awarded to the same recipient for multiple years of school. Applications are not yet open for the 2023-2024 school year.
- The Glenn English Youth Tour Scholarship - Provided by the National Rural Electric Association, this scholarship is available to students that have attended the Youth Tour trip. Four $1,000 scholarships and one $10,000 will be awarded yearly to Youth Tour alumni from across the country. Awards are available for any year of college or master's program and can be awarded to the same recipient for multiple years of school. Applications are not yet open for the 2023-2024 school year.