Community Involvement

Learning to Catch the Wind

Mortenson team members teach students how to Catch the Wind.

Mortenson recognizes that a successful project is not only measured by meeting schedule and budget constraints. Our success as a company was built upon strong relationships we’ve developed with our customers and in the communities we serve. Our experiences in construction have made us aware of the impact a project can have on a local community as well as the impact the local community can have on the project.

Children living in the communities surrounding the Glen Dhu Wind Farm, located near Merigomish, Nova Scotia, know a bit more about constructing wind farms after a visit from Mortenson's Renewable Energy Group project team. The Glen Dhu team took Mortenson's children's book, Catch the Wind, to two local schools and presented information to more than 300 3rd – 6th grade students about wind energy and construction. Following the presentation, the students submitted artwork, as part of a wind energy poster competition. Twelve winning designs were chosen and included in a calendar, which was distributed within the local community."I have had the opportunity to participate in three Catch the Wind events thus far," said Bob Venturin, senior project manager. " It is such a rewarding experience teaching the children about our industry. Not only are we teaching children about wind farms, we are building relationships within the local community."

"One of my favorite parts about the presentations is during the Q & A session," Chris Wenger, project supervisor, said. "Not only do the kids ask some very intelligent questions, but the teachers get involved as well. Renewable energy seems to spike everyone's interest, and it feels great to know that we're helping others understand more about our industry.”

Catch the Wind was created by Mortenson team members to teach elementary-age children about wind energy, introduce them to construction careers, and provide Mortenson teams with an opportunity to build relationships within the communities where we work and office. In 2009, Catch the Wind received a Nautilus Silver Award, which celebrates art, creativity and inspirational books for children, teens and young adults that contribute to positive social change.

As of January 2011, Mortenson team members have visited 58 schools in 13 U.S. states and 3 Canadian provinces, teaching more 5,500 students about wind energy and its impact as a growing industry.

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Please visit our Discover Renewables page to learn more about em>Catch the Wind and how you can get a copy. Or take a few minutes to enjoy our Catch the Wind video.