Mankato East teacher selected for grant to help upgrade planetarium

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Sep. 13—MANKATO — The science and planetarium director at Mankato East High School has received a $2,000 grant to help upgrade the school's planetarium.

David Burgess is only one of 50 winners to be awarded the grant from the Voya Unsung Heroes program.

The money will be used to update the technology platform, including the 15-year-old presentation equipment, in the school's planetarium, which sees between 12,000 to 15,000 people including students each year who run many of the shows.

The upgrades will enable the school to develop new student-led programming for the planetarium.

Burgess will also compete with other finalists for one of the top three prizes — an additional $5,000, $10,000 or $25,000 from Voya Financial.