With this week s kick-off of National Engineers Week Lockheed Martin has announced several major initiatives to strengthen U.S. student interest in science, technology, engineering and math (STEM) careers. The company has signed a $6 million agreement with Project Lead the Way (PLTW) to expand STEM education in select urban school districts, and has partnered with the National Geographic Society to refresh its Engineers In The Classroom program.
Our nation is having a robust debate over the desire to maintain our competitive edge in an increasingly global economy, said Dr. Ray O. Johnson, Lockheed Martin senior vice president and chief technology officer. Innovation, technology and engineering continue to be essential to America s economic development. With an employee population that includes 60,000 engineers, scientists and IT professionals, advancing STEM education is a critical focus for Lockheed Martin.
Since 2007, Lockheed Martin has provided over $1.2 million in grants and scholarships to PLTW students. The company has also supported the development of PLTW s middle school and high school courses focused on aerospace engineering and flight. The new contribution will significantly expand the reach of these programs in urban school districts. The specific districts will be announced in the coming months.
The corporation s partnership with the National Geographic Society will provide Lockheed Martin engineers tools and materials they can take into local classrooms to do experiments, offer lessons and give students a first-hand account of what it s like to be an engineer. The Engineers in the Classroom program offers Web-based content designed to spark student interest in STEM careers.
Throughout Engineers Week, hundreds of Lockheed Martin engineers will conduct tours and demonstrations for visiting school groups, host on-site student competitions, and visit schools in their communities to inspire and engage the next generation of engineers.
Lockheed Martin is also the founding and presenting sponsor of the USA Science & Engineering Festival, a grassroots collaboration of more than 700 of the leading science and engineering organizations in the United States.
The USA Science & Engineering Festival was developed to increase public awareness about the importance of science and to encourage youth to pursue careers in science and engineering, Lockheed Martin will feature hands-on interactive opportunities ranging from space exploration and innovation in flight to the design of super small things through nanotechnology. The Festival will take place April 25-27, 2014 at the Walter E. Washington Convention Center in Washington, D.C.