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About Energy LEAP

The Energy Literacy, Engagement and Action Program (Energy LEAP) is a FREE summer institute for high school students. During this program students conduct hands-on and minds-on science, technology, engineering and math (STEM) activities to examine society’s current use of energy and the technological solutions that will support a low-carbon future. Programming includes a mixture of hands-on activities, presentations and virtual field trips!

This student science enrichment program is administered by the UNC Institute for the Environment and is conducted in partnership with UNC’s Department of Physics and Astronomy. Financial support for this program is provided by the UNC Institute for the Environment and the Duke Energy Foundation.

The Energy LEAP program for high school students will take place on UNC’s campus from 9:00 am to 4:00 pm July 31-August 4, 2023.

Energy LEAP topics include:

  • Combined heat and power
  • Electricity fundamentals
  • Electric vehicles
  • Energy conservation
  • Energy efficiency
  • Fossil fuels
  • Geothermal energy
  • Hydropower
  • Nuclear energy
  • Smart grid technology
  • Solar energy
  • Sustainable building design
  • Sustainable transportation
  • Wind energy
  • Connections between energy and society

Energy LEAP is FREE, and students will be provided with a $200 Visa gift card for completing the program.

Program Eligibility

Energy LEAP is open to rising 9th – 12th graders who attend any school in Alamance, Chatham, Durham or Orange counties. Females and minorities under-represented in science, technology, engineering and math (STEM) careers are especially encouraged to apply.


The application deadline is 11:59 pm on Monday, April 17, 2023. For an application to be considered, we must receive both a student application and a nomination form from a teacher or mentor before this deadline. Before applying, we strongly suggest that applicants review the “What You Should Know Before Applying” document. The student application and teacher/mentor nomination form can be found below:

Student Application – Please Link

Teacher or Mentor Nomination Form – Please Link

Notice of selection status will be made via email on or before May 19, 2023.

Program Contact

Grant Parkins, Program Director