Columbia Gas of PA

Infusing STEM Across K-12 Outreach

Elementary School Programs

  • As part of a National Energy Foundation program, Columbia Gas sends kits on natural gas safety and usage to schools within the service territory. Letters are sent to educators offering the materials, and those who respond are sent a kit including posters, stickers, student handouts, website links, and lesson plans about the safe use of natural gas.
  • Energy Safe Kids: One of the longest running programs, it aims to teach fourth-grade students and teachers about natural gas safety. The program was developed in partnership with the National Energy Foundation to promote energy literacy for children of all ages. To qualify for the program, schools are required to be in the Columbia Gas service area and in 2018 the program reached over 2500 students.
  • Introduce a Girl to Engineering: The program targets girls in 3rd-5th grade to introduce them to engineering roles, energy issues and natural gas safety. The popular program works to cultivate local talent and encourage youth to continue to work within their community after graduation. Last year the program over 100 participants for a one-day seminar.
  • Digger Dog: The Digger Dog mascot was created to educate children about safe digging, natural gas safety, and to help develop Youth Advocates for Public Awareness. In addition to a costumed Digger Dog mascot who appears throughout the year at community events, school presentations, and other gatherings to promote 811 /Call Before You Dig. The Digger Dog site features information for kids, families, and educators; including safe digging games, home safety information, and natural gas safety lesson plans.

High School Programs

  • Extracurricular School Programming: High school students have the opportunity to experience project-based learning through a partnership with the Consortium for Public Education. This initiative provides students with the opportunity to visit local companies and gain hands-on experience by working on company challenges with their classmates. At the conclusion of the program, student teams present solutions to corporate staff.

On the Energy Safe Kids Program

“The kids enjoy it and teachers benefit from the specific information presented by an expert in the field. It’s relevant to curriculum and safety for students and families.”

Best Practices

Hands-on Learning

Hands-on exercises, especially for younger children, are key to successful engagement and learning outcomes. Programs like Digger Dog focus on safety and the program is tailored to grab children’s attention through fun and information activities and resources.

Cross-functional Collaboration

Working at all levels with teachers, children, and companies is key to meeting the various needs of the communities in our service area. New schools have the opportunity to participate each year, which allows for broad community impact and fresh feedback to help us improve our programs.

About Columbia Gas of PA

Columbia Gas is one of Pennsylvania’s leading energy companies, with a highly trained team dedicated to providing our customers with the essential energy services they need every day.  We provide natural gas service to residential, commercial and industrial customers in 450 communities in 26 counties. Columbia Gas of PA is deeply committed to serving customers, working safely and supporting our local communities.

Energy Safe Kids Program with Digger Dog
Introduce a Girl to Engineering Program
Extracurricular Project-Based Learning Demonstration with Columbia Gas employee