Students at Independence Elementary School in Rock Hill, S.C., recently celebrated a week of activities focused on science and technology by flipping the switch on a 230 kW solar project made possible by the Duke Energy Solar Rebate Program.

Duke Energy provided the school a $280,000 rebate for the system, which will act as a learning tool for students in their science, technology, engineering and math (STEM) lesson plans. The project was installed by Strata Solar.

“As a principal, it is always my goal to grow my students and prepare them for their desired career paths, many of which have yet to be created,” says Kimberly Odom, principal of Independence Elementary. “The partnership with Duke Energy on the solar installation allows our school to be able to provide students with different learning opportunities that prepare them for future careers in the STEM field. This is a fantastic partnership, and we look forward to leveraging this resource for many years to come.”

Duke Energy says its Solar Rebate Program has provided more than $50 million to help defray the upfront cost of solar to customers across the state. The rebate program was one of several solar initiatives made possible by Act 236, an omnibus solar bill passed by the South Carolina General Assembly in 2014. Independence Elementary School is one of more than 675 schools and businesses and 1,400 residential customers to receive rebates. In addition to the rebate program, Duke Energy plans to launch a community solar program this year.

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