National Engineers Week

Feb 24, 2006

Kettering catapulted into National Engineers Week with an engineering competition for area middle school students, and wrapped up the week with an egg drop competition - all designed to foster interest in engineering among middle and high school-aged students.

Engineers Week, a formal coalition of more than 70 engineering, education, and cultural societies, and more than 50 corporations and government agencies, is dedicated to raising public awareness of engineers' positive contributions to our quality of life.

Dr. Laura Sullivan, associate professor of Mechanical Engineering, kicked off the week Monday, Feb. 20, with her Statics classes and a group of 36 middle school students from Genesee County, who had the Day off in honor of President's Day. The middle schoolers were given an engineering project to design and build a catapult using provided materials that included rubber bands, a plastic spiral, two number 2 pencils, three rubber bands, four paper clips, one 12-inch ruler, one sheet of mailing labels, 10 post it notes and a small sheet of cardboard.

Kettering Statics students were on hand to help the middle school student with design and construction only if asked, and then judge the finished projects in a catapulting competition. (Statics is the application of physics to mechanical engineering.) First, second and third prizes were awarded including a video ipod, an ipod nano and an ipod shuffle, respectively.

The winners were:
1st Place: Cameron Milbrot, Swartz Creek Middle School, Swartz Creek
2nd Place: Ryan Brack, Flushing Middle School, Flushing
3rd Place: Anna Grubb, Burton Glen Middle School, Flint


On Wednesday, Feb. 22, the Society of Women Engineers student chapter at Kettering hosted a dinner for middle school girls and their favorite teacher. Speakers were Dr. Laura Sullivan and Marquita Adams, current Kettering student.

The final Engineers Week event on Thursday, Feb. 23, the egg drop, had students from three area high schools attending a Kettering Student Government (KSG) meeting and then competing in the egg drop competition in the Campus Center.

The competition pit the student council members from Flushing High School, Mt. Morris High School and Lake Fenton High School against KSG in a competition to design a container that would protect an egg when dropped from the third floor of the Campus Center into the Great Court on the second floor.

The containers had to be made from a pint sized milk carton, plastic forks, rubber bands, Q-tips and plastic sandwich bags. Flushing High School's design was the most protective, causing only a minor crack in their egg. The other three eggs shattered.



More about National Engineers Week Feb 19-25, 2006:
Engineers Week 2006 is co-chaired by the Society of Women Engineers and Northrop Grumman Corporation.

Engineers Week promotes recognition among parents, teachers and students of the importance of a technical education and a high level of math, science, and technology literacy, and motivates youths to pursue engineering careers in order to provide a diverse, vigorous and informed engineering workforce.

Each year Engineers Week reaches thousands of schools, businesses, and community groups across the United States . Engineers Week programs and materials are accessible to those outside the U.S. as well.



Written by Dawn Hibbard