Friday, January 23, 2009

Website of the Week: National Engineers Week Foundation

The National Engineers Week Foundation is holding Engineers Week from February 15-21, 2009. I received the following E-mail from Jamie Goldman (thanks, Jamie!) about the event. (I added links for easy reference):

The National Engineers Week Foundation, sponsored by the nation’s professional engineering communities, is dedicated to sustaining and growing a dynamic engineering profession. The Foundation’s biggest week of the year is its annual mid-winter slate of programs and events known as Eweek, which encourages and challenges young people to explore potential careers in science, technology, math and engineering.

During the week of February 15-21, 2009, Eweek’s jam packed slate of activities will include:

17th Annual Future City Competition

Future City Competition asks kids to come up with designs employing strategies and techniques used by architects, city planners and engineers. This year, the Future City finals take place in Washington, DC February 16-18, 2009. In preparation for this inspiring and exciting event, teams of middle school students in 40 states are hard at work right now on their creations, which they will then enter into qualifying regional finals around the country in mid-January.

This year’s theme is Creating a Self Sufficient System Within the Home Which Conserves, Recycles and Reuses Existing Water Sources. Recognizing that water will become an increasingly precious resource in the 21st Century, the competition organizers have tasked the middle school competitors with developing designs that focus on water conservation, re-use and self-sufficient water systems.

Students 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, models must use recycled materials and can cost no more than $100 to build. Students also write brief abstracts 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. The grand prize is a week at Space Camp in Alabama.

9th Annual Introduce a Girl to Engineering Day

National Engineers Week Foundation is leading the effort to raise awareness among young women and girls by encouraging them to recognize that a career in math, science and engineering is not only possible but it is also within their power to achieve. Slated for Thursday, February 19th, Girl Day will see women engineers and their male counterparts reach as many as one million girls with workshops, tours, on line discussions and a host of hands on activities at businesses, universities and libraries across the country.

5th Annual Global Marathon By, For and About Women in Engineering

Starting at noon (EDT) Tuesday, March 10 and going until noon (EDT) Wednesday, March 11, Eweek’s Global Marathon is a live, 24 hour worldwide online forum providing information and insight for women on careers in engineering and technology. This continuous program follows the sun around the world as it features webcasts, Internet chats and teleconferences on five continents and connects an international community of women in engineering and technology. The Global Marathon coincides with Women’s History Month (March) and International Women’s Day (March 8, 2009).

New Faces of Engineering

Each year, National Engineers Week Foundation asks its members to nominate colleagues 30 years old and younger who have shown outstanding abilities and leadership. This year’s honorees, some of the best and brightest in the industry, will be announced during Eweek.

I am thrilled to see that Eweek is reaching out to girls and women in such a tangible way. And the National Engineers Week Foundation's website has some other great tidbits, too, including tips to introduce K-12 students to engineering. Check it out!


Captain Mom said...

Thank you for posting the information about National Engineering Week Foundation's activities. I was unaware that such programs existed. My 12 year-old daughter has her sights set on work in an engineering-related field and she would love to participate in these programs. We are now hoping to introduce her middle school to the Future Cities competition and ask that our local university consider "Introduce a Girl to Engineering Day."

At 12, my daughter is still idealistic about her future but I also want her to see that her dreams are realistic. She is rapidly approaching that sticky age that, for girls, often sees their interests take a backseat to other matters and this adds to the factors that result in marginalization of women in technical and scientific pursuits.

Thanks for all of the great info that you've posted!

jublke said...

That's great, Captain Mom! I'm so glad that this information was helpful to you. :)

I am hopeful that the bias against women in engineering will continue to wane in succeeding generations, so more power to your daughter!

You might also check out my post about Engineer Your Life, a website about engineering for high school girls.