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FEATURE ARTICLE
Engineers Week® 2011
February 2011

Founded in 1951 by the National Society of Professional Engineers (NSPE), Engineers Week is among the oldest of America’s professional outreach efforts. The National Engineers Week Foundation, a formal coalition of more than 100 professional societies, major corporations and government agencies, is dedicated to ensuring a diverse and well-educated future engineering workforce by increasing understanding of and interest in engineering and technology careers among young students and by promoting pre-college literacy in math and science. Collectively, America’s engineers contribute more than one million hours annually to public service. National Engineers Week Foundation coalition members, with the support of engineering firms and agencies, represent a significant segment of this volunteer force. This year, to help celebrate the 60th anniversary of Engineers Week, the Foundation is giving special recognition to engineer volunteers.


Engineers Week 2011, February 20-26, will be led by Raytheon Company and the American Society of Heating, Refrigerating and Air-Conditioning Engineers (ASHRAE). Honorary Chair for 2011 is William H. Swanson Chairman and CEO of Raytheon Company and Chair is Lynn G. Bellenger, P.E., President of ASHRAE. Visit www.eweek.org for more information on programs including:

National Engineers Week Future City Competition™ – Sponsored by the nation’s professional engineering community, Future City, one of the nation’s largest engineering education programs and among the most popular, aims to stir interest in science, technology, engineering and math among young people. Students work in teams under the guidance of a teacher and a volunteer engineer mentor to design and build a city of tomorrow. They create cities on computers using the SimCity™ 4 Deluxe software and then build three-dimensional, tabletop models to scale. To ensure a level playing field, the 3-D models must use recycled materials and can cost no more than $100 to build. Students also write brief narratives describing their city and must present and defend their designs at the competition before a panel of engineer judges who test the depth of the teams’ knowledge.

National Engineers Week Foundation Diversity Council – A formal alliance of engineering and diversity organizations dedicated to promoting and advancing diversity in engineering. The Council collaborates on projects and issues of interest that add value to the members’ organizations as well as to broader communities, drawing upon the member organizations’ individual interests and strengths to present a stronger and wider-reaching message on how their constituents contribute to engineering solutions. National Engineers Week Foundation facilitates communications among the Council’s member organizations and among the more than 75 Engineers Week coalition partners.

DiscoverE – Discover E / K-12 engineers share a common desire: to help grade school and high school students discover the exciting worlds of engineering and technology. Their goal is to relate practical applications of math, science, and engineering to the world around them.

Introduce a Girl to Engineering Day – Introduce a Girl to Engineering Day celebrates its 10th Anniversary on February 24, 2011. For the past ten years, women engineers have introduced more than one million girls and young women to engineering. More than just one day, Introduce a Girl to Engineering is a national movement that shows girls how creative and collaborative engineering is and how engineers are changing our world.

Engineer Your Life (EYL) – A New Message for Girls: Dream Big. Love What You Do. Engineer Your Life (EYL) is a national messaging campaign designed to reposition engineering as an exciting, rewarding career choice for young women. Anchored by an award-winning multimedia website, EYL features 10 great reasons to become an engineer, streaming video of inspiring women engineers, descriptions of dream engineering jobs, and advice for parents, counselors, and engineers on how to talk to young women about this career.

Family Event – The annual Washington, DC Engineering Family Day is enjoyed by over six thousand visitors to the National Building Museum every February. The festival, to be held on February 19, 2011, features dozens of hands-on activities provided by local engineering chapters and national organizations. Every year at the start of Engineers Week, the impressive main hall of the National Building Museum is taken over by thousands of children of all ages experiencing the excitement of engineering.

New Faces of Engineering – The New Faces of Engineering recognition program highlights the exciting and often unique work of young engineers and the resulting impact on society. Today’s engineers are working to solve issues on a global scale, and these engineers, age 30 years or younger, have shown outstanding abilities in projects that significantly impact public welfare or further professional development and growth.

Discover Engineering (www.discoverengineering.org) – It’s a fun, new website developed specifically for middle school students to learn more about engineering, technology, math, and science. It provides instant access to 3 “crazy cool” videos designed and produced for students in grades 6, 7, and 8. Clean water, wind turbines, and solar power are just a few of the topics and lessons addressed in a highly entertaining way. Videos are available on DVD for classroom or auditorium showings.

Global Marathon – For, By and About Women in Engineering and Technology, a weeklong event March 7-12, 2011. Join in a live worldwide forum on topics for, by and about current and future generations of women in engineering and technology. The 2011 Marathon is led by Nan Mattai, Senior Vice President – Rockwell Collins Engineering & Technology, the event’s Honorary Chair with Cindy Kou (Yu Xin), Program Director IBM Lotus Collaborative Productivity Tools, Vice Chair.

Local events planned in conjunction with national Engineers Week events will include:

• The 2011 Richmond Joint Engineers’ Council (RJEC) Annual Banquet will be held on Wednesday, February 23rd at the historic Jefferson Hotel in Richmond, Virginia. This year’s invited speaker is Mr. W. James Adams, Deputy Director of Planetary Science at the National Aeronautics and Space Administration (NASA). In his capacity as Deputy Director, he is responsible for the cost, schedule and technical performance of all the cutting edge planetary missions that NASA sends to space in order to accomplish outstanding science and make new discoveries. Holding a B.S. degree in Physics from Westminster College and a M. S. degree in Electrical Engineering from Villanova University, Mr. Adams has served as the project formulation manager for the Global Precipitation Measurement (GPM) mission, chief of Goddard’s Rapid Spacecraft Development Office and as observatory manager for the EOS Chemistry mission and the Global Geospace Science WIND and POLAR missions during his career at NASA.

Also at this year’s banquet, RJEC will present its annual Engineer of the Year and Community Service awards. Additionally, winners of RJEC’s annual essay and media contests for area students will be announced. Complete banquet schedule and registration information is available at www.rjec.org.

• The Virginia Society of Professional Engineers (VSPE) will sponsor and coordinate the MATHCOUNTS 2011 competitions in Virginia which will be held during February and March. MATHCOUNTS is a national competition where students in the 6th, 7th and 8th grades compete both as individuals and as teams in events designed to promote mathematical competency. MATHCOUNTS was developed as a positive and rewarding solution to reversing the current problem of math illiteracy and as a way to make parents, educators and the general public aware of career opportunities in math. More detailed information about the Virginia competitions is available at www.vspe.org. ##


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