"Engineers Dream Big" is the theme behind this year’s National Engineers Week, which the Louisville District is supporting in full force through a series of educational events designed to inspire young minds.
"National Engineers Week is a great opportunity to celebrate our teammates that have achieved professional accreditation," said Col. Christopher Beck, Louisville District Commander. "It is also an opportunity for our team to reach out to universities in our area and excite future engineers about the career upon which they are embarking. All of these efforts let us celebrate STEM education and its criticality to the future of our organization, enterprise, and nation."
Civil Engineer Corey White, who is spearheading the outreach events during the week of Feb. 19-25, says it’s important to support Engineers Week to introduce students to the engineering career field.
"For me personally, I like talking to the high school students about engineering because when I was in high school I didn’t even know what engineering was; I had to Google it. I read about engineering and I still didn’t understand fully what it was," he said. "I really enjoy doing this and sharing it with students so they can understand a whole career field that they didn’t even know about."
A number of events are planned by the Louisville District including support at four different engineering career fairs at the University of Kentucky, Virginia Tech, and Centre College on Feb. 21 and the University of Louisville on Feb. 23 where Louisville District staff will be on-hand to provide information about a career with the Corps of Engineers.
On Feb. 22 there are two separate speaking engagements planned for Mercy Academy High School and approximately 160 students at Presentation Academy. "This presentation will give students an insight on the engineering field, the different types of engineers, and what you have to go through in college to become an engineer," said White.
In addition to speaking engagements, the Louisville District is participating in the Kentucky Science Center’s annual Engineers Week program from Feb. 23-25 where kids can do hands-on activities and have one-on-one interactions with STEM professionals. "We will demonstrate a flood scenario using a model city containing levees and floodwalls so we will be able to show the kids what we do as engineers to reduce flood risk," said White.
The week’s events will conclude on Feb. 24 with White, and fellow engineer Lucy Schurr speaking to approximately 40 students at the University of Louisville’s J.B. Speed School of Engineering about the Corps and what job opportunities might exist as well as the district’s missions and important role in navigation, construction and flood risk management.
"Our support of Engineers Week programs and activities will help cultivate great minds across all STEM fields, not just engineering," said White. "Our hope is that we can inspire students to pursue careers where they can have a positive impact on the world through engineering or other STEM fields. This is an investment that will have great returns."