Fresh Air Science Fair brings clean air and pollution concepts to life for Julian Thomas Elementary fifth-graders

Winners of Modine- and Bucks-sponsored effort were awarded prizes at assembly featuring Bucks mascot Bango and trampoline dunking team Rim Rockers

March 27, 2024 (Racine, WI) — Julian Thomas Elementary fifth-graders participated in an almost two-month-long Fresh Air Science Fair that culminated in an award assembly Wednesday, where winners were announced and prizes were awarded with the help of Milwaukee Bucks mascot Bango.

The Fresh Air Science Fair is the result of a partnership between Modine, Milwaukee Bucks, Racine Unified School District and United Way of Racine County. 

“Modine is proud to have sponsored the Fresh Air Science Fair alongside the Milwaukee Bucks and Julian Thomas Elementary,” said Jake Feldman, Vice President and General Manager of Indoor Air Quality at Modine. “For decades, Modine has been the leader in creating healthy learning environments in K-12 spaces. We are committed to our purpose of engineering a cleaner, healthier world and empowering the next generation of problem solvers to tackle the environmental challenges that impact our communities each day.”

Each member of the first-place team received three tickets to the April 10 Bucks game against the Orlando Magic, transportation to and from the game and concession stand vouchers to use at the Fiserv Forum during the game. Second- and third-place winning teams won Bucks merchandise.

Winning teams are: 

  • First place team members: Athena Ibarra Larzon, Angie Zapata, Elizabeth Salcedo, Brayan Gutierrez and David Cruz.
  • Second place team members: Elijah James Webster, Nasire Cunningham and Tavares Golden.
  • Third place team members: Zaya Brelove, Larzita Coronado, Emily Delagarza, Rosa Campos-Ramirez and Ian Sanchez-Olivares.
  • The science fair kicked off on Feb. 1, when Modine representatives visited Julian Thomas’ fifth-grade science classes to introduce the fair and its exciting prizes and teach the students about clean air and the effects of indoor and outdoor pollution.

The students created their teams and submitted projects. The top five projects were selected by Julian Thomas Elementary staff and those projects were evaluated before the assembly by representatives of Modine, Bucks, United Way of Racine County and Julian Thomas Elementary.

The entries were judged on the quality of their research and data analysis, and the creativity of their presentation.

“It was impressive to see how well the students presented the air quality concepts in their science fair entries,” Haigh said. “The partnerships that helped bring this great opportunity to Julian Thomas show what exciting things can happen when multiple organizations come together to make an impact. The science fair and this award presentation was an unforgettable time.”

About Modine
At Modine, we are Engineering a Cleaner, Healthier World™. Building on more than 100 years of excellence in thermal management, we provide trusted systems and solutions that improve air quality and conserve natural resources. More than 11,000 employees are at work in every corner of the globe, delivering the solutions our customers need, where they need them. Our Climate Solutions and Performance Technologies segments support our purpose by improving air quality, reducing energy and water consumption, lowering harmful emissions and enabling cleaner running vehicles and environmentally-friendly refrigerants. Modine is a global company headquartered in Racine, Wisconsin (U.S.), with operations in North America, South America, Europe and Asia. For more information about Modine, visit

About United Way of Racine County 
United Way of Racine County fights for the health, education, and financial stability of every person in our community by partnering with individuals and organizations to create long-lasting, positive change. United Way of Racine County funds local programs, special projects, and its own initiatives, to create impact in Racine County. To learn how you can join us, visit or call (262) 898-2240.

About Racine Unified School District
Located in southeastern Wisconsin, Racine Unified School District (RUSD) is the fifth largest school district in the state, serving more than 16,000 students. Our culturally diverse schools prepare our students to thrive in a global community. We offer all students a wide variety of choices and programs that create opportunities for them to excel. These opportunities include the Academies of Racine at Case, Horlick and Park High Schools, a robust K-12 Virtual Learning Program, both International Baccalaureate and Advanced Placement programs, Montessori, Dual Language, award-winning fine arts, Division I athletics and so much more. Our highly qualified educators are committed to providing challenging and engaging learning experiences for all students.