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Republic FC & SMUD Partner to Create STEM-Based Board Game to Launch in 10 Sacramento Region Schools

By Grace Ogata-Beutler, 10/20/21, 9:30AM PDT

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Game engages students in core STEM subjects and renewable energy through a simulated Republic FC soccer game

Today, Republic FC and SMUD are growing their partnership to develop a tool for teachers that will create excitement around math and science and launch a competition for students in the region. With the assistance of Learn Fresh, a non-profit dedicated to providing innovative STEM learning experiences, “STEM Goals” – a soccer-based math game, has been designed exclusively for Republic FC and SMUD to provide educators with a resource that links sports and science in a fun and engaging way.

STEM Goals brings the world’s most popular game directly into the hands of students. The board game is a simulated soccer game where 5th and 6th graders answer age-appropriate, standards-aligned questions across science, technology, engineering, and math disciplines, working up and down the field to score goals using stats from Republic FC players. Chance and action cards give students the opportunity to learn more about soccer.

“With more kids falling in love with soccer, creating a connection with math and science will inspire them to focus on building skills that will help them grow,” said Republic FC President and General Manager Todd Dunivant. “With the support of our partners at SMUD and Learn Fresh, teachers now have a new, exciting tool to help students discover more about science, technology, math, engineering, and innovation.”

“SMUD is thrilled to partner once again with Sacramento Republic FC on bringing sports and STEM-driven learning experiences into Sacramento-area classrooms,” said Gary King, SMUD’s Chief Diversity Officer. “With SMUD’s goal of creating a zero carbon future for our region, our priority is to support early education in science, technology, engineering, and math for youth of all backgrounds. This partnership will equip the next generation of difference-makers with the tools to innovate, inspire, and lead the way to a cleaner future.”

To kick off the first season of STEM Goals, Republic FC and SMUD are launching a ten-school pilot tournament, where teachers will utilize the board game as a tool in their lesson plans and

instruction, leading up to a final tournament. Each school will send its champions to the STEM Goals Cup Final, to be held next year when the Republic FC season kicks off at Heart Health Park. Through a partnership with the PEAR Institute at Harvard, all of the STEM Goals participants will have an opportunity to participate in a skills assessment to see their growth through the game.

The competition kicks off today, Wednesday, October 20, when Taylor Street Elementary School will host their first competition for 5th and 6th graders in the Robla Unified School District. The top two players will face off against two members from Republic FC’s first team. SMUD Board of Directors Rosanna Herber and Rob Kerth will also be in attendance.

“Through this special partnership with Republic FC and SMUD, our students have an exciting new way to explore math and science, and our teachers and families will have a new resource to inspire learning,” said Robla School District Superintendent Ruben Reyes. “We’re looking forward to watching our kids grow and spark their interest in STEM and clean energy, which will hopefully turn into a passion beyond the classroom.”

The fast-paced board game can be played in classroom settings, as an extracurricular activity, and with families to instill a rich connection with learning. Played in two, 10-minute halves, students will aim to drive their favorite Republic FC players up the field by answering questions about science, math, technology, renewable energy, and more, to different shooting locations on the game board, with different odds based on player stats, location on the board, and more.

For almost 75 years, SMUD has invested in causes that are important to our customers, community, and the future. SMUD's 2030 Zero Carbon Plan includes the most ambitious carbon reduction goal of any large utility in the nation – to remove all carbon emissions from its power supply by 2030. Equity is central to SMUD’s Zero Carbon Plan to ensure all communities benefit from carbon reduction. The Sustainable Communities effort aligns programs, goals, and investments to support healthy, vibrant, and economically sustainable neighborhoods for all. By investing in STEM education, SMUD is providing educational opportunities and partnerships to prepare and inspire students to help build an inclusive clean energy future for all.

For more information, visit SacRepublicFC.com/STEM-Goals.


About SMUD

As the nation’s sixth-largest, community-owned, not-for-profit electric service provider, SMUD has been providing low-cost, reliable electricity to Sacramento County for nearly 75 years. SMUD is a recognized industry leader and award winner for its innovative energy efficiency programs, renewable power technologies, and for its sustainable solutions for a healthier environment. SMUD’s power mix is about 50 percent non-carbon emitting. For more information, visit smud.org.