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HPA Energy Lab named Apple Distinguished Program

The Energy Lab at Hawaii Preparatory Academy has been recognized as an Apple Distinguished Program for 2013-2015. (PHOTO COURTESY OF HPA FOR NHN)
The Energy Lab at Hawaii Preparatory Academy has been recognized as an Apple Distinguished Program for 2013-2015. (PHOTO COURTESY OF HPA FOR NHN)
HPA junior Davy Ragland uses an Emotiv headset to record brain waves that can be analyzed online by senior Jessica Chow, left, and junior Alina Sabyr. (PHOTO COURTESY OF HPA FOR NHN)
HPA junior Davy Ragland uses an Emotiv headset to record brain waves that can be analyzed online by senior Jessica Chow, left, and junior Alina Sabyr. (PHOTO COURTESY OF HPA FOR NHN)

The Energy Lab at Hawaii Preparatory Academy has been recognized as an Apple Distinguished Program for 2013–2015.

The Apple Distinguished Program designation is reserved for programs that meet criteria for innovation, leadership, and educational excellence, and demonstrate a clear vision of exemplary learning environments.

“The Energy Lab is a creative crucible for innovative students to have access to emerging technologies and tools,” said Dr. Bill Wiecking, director of the Energy Lab. “This learning space enables autonomy, mastery, and sense of purpose in our students, which are hallmarks of successful, creative people.

At the Energy Lab, students have access to 40 MacBook Pros, 30 iPads, 20 iMacs, and 20 Mac minis for their projects, helping to support the way they live and how they want to learn. All rooms have flat panel displays linked to Apple TV units for fluid presentation of iPad and MacBook screens. Six Xserve servers in the building host educational materials and student projects that can be previewed by teachers throughout the campus.

All students also have file server connectivity with additional access to more experimental resources at the Energy Lab, including weblogs, iBooks, iTunes U, and student-created wikis.

HPA students are creating High-Dynamic-Range virtual reality tours of Hawaii Island observatories, evaluating learning in elementary-age children using the Emotiv brain wave headset, designing and building a wireless sensor suite to study sleep apnea, working on DNA testing for fast- and slow-twitch muscle quality in runners, and working with the Tetris founders to study the brainʻs activity while playing the game. In March, six upper school students will attend the Green Schools National Conference in Sacramento and also will present their projects at MacWorld/iWorld in San Francisco.

The 6,112-square foot Energy Lab opened in January 2010. In April 2011, the International Living Building Institute described the Energy Lab as “the world’s greenest K-12 school building” in its announcement of the Energy Lab’s Living Building Challenge certification. The Energy Lab, which also is the first building in Hawaii to achieve LEED Platinum certification under the Leadership in Energy and Environmental Design for Schools 2.0 rating system, has been recognized with numerous awards for design, engineering, integrated development, and building/technology.

For more information about HPA’s Energy Lab, visit www.hpa.edu/academics/energy-lab.