Southern Company helps sponsor national science teachers conference

Southern Company, the nation’s largest generator of electricity, is a corporate sponsor of the National Science Teachers Association’s 47th national convention, which begins today in Boston.

More than 20,000 science educators are expected to attend the four-day conference – the largest gathering of science educators in the world – at the John B. Hynes Convention Center. The event will focus on how educators are embracing the National Science Education Standards and preparing the nation’s students for the 21st century.

“Southern Company is committed to environmental education and working with science educators to teach students about electricity production,” said Steven R. Spencer, Southern Company’s senior vice president of external affairs. “We’re excited about our involvement with the National Science Teachers Association and believe that science education provides an excellent means for developing critical thinking skills.”

U.S. Secretary of Education Richard Riley is scheduled to discuss the Administration’s education initiatives on Friday, and former Sen. John Glenn, a space pioneer, is the keynote speaker at the NSTA aerospace educators luncheon Saturday. Southern Company is providing funding for webcasting Riley’s and Glenn’s comments on the NSTA’s Internet site at Southern Company also is providing scholarships to nine exemplary science teachers to attend the annual meeting.

Southern Company (NYSE: SO), is an international energy company with $35 billion in assets through regional utilities and operations around the world. It is the largest producer of electricity in the United States and one of the world`s largest independent power producers. Based in Atlanta, Southern Company is the parent firm of Alabama Power, Georgia Power, Gulf Power, Mississippi Power and Savannah Electric. Through its Southern Energy Inc. subsidiary, Southern Company supplies electricity in 10 countries on four continents. It also provides energy-related marketing, trading and technical services and Southern LINC wireless telecommunications.

Southern Company has expanded in North America and now owns assets in the Northeast, including the Boston area, the upper Midwest, California and Texas.

In 1998, Southern Company launched a new Web site called “Learning Power” to teach children about electricity. The site targets teachers, parents and students and continues Southern Company’s commitment to teaching school children about electricity and power companies.

Southern Company also encourages students to get involved in environmental issues. For example, its Georgia Power, Mississippi Power and Gulf Power subsidiaries sponsor teacher workshops. Alabama Power manages The Water Course in Alabama – an interactive educational facility that teaches hydroelectric generation, water-related environmental issues and environmental protection. And Savannah Electric annually funds a scholarship for an intensive eight-week course in coastal oceanography.