Thursday, January 9, 2020

Windham High students visit engineering program

As part of Windham High School’s continued push to expose students to a variety of career opportunities within the state, a small group of high school students had the privilege of touring several of the University of Maine’s Engineering programs.

Accompanied by Kerry Kowalcyk, the JMG/MELMAC College and Career Specialist and Lanet Hane, RSU14 Director of Community Connections, the students were led through various departments by graduate students and professors who worked closely in those content areas.

Professors discussed the focus of each program, laying out the differences between chemical, biomedical, mechanical, electrical, and computer engineering. They also spoke to the skills required for students to be accepted into the programs, highlighting the need for a strong math and science foundation for success.

Each department made sure to show off their most exciting features, from the cleanroom and electron microscope to a racecar, a room-sized 3D printer, and even a student-built wind tunnel. At each stop, students were reminded that engineering is all about being a problem-solver.

Dr. Musavi, Associate Dean for the School of Engineering, shared lunch with the students and answered a number of individualized questions. He also shared about the pre-engineering program the school has developed for those who are interested in engineering but need slightly stronger math and science knowledge.

The group was comprised of 11 students grades nine through 12, from those who were just starting to explore an interest in engineering to one student who had already applied to the program and was waiting to receive an official response.

“For a while it was just a dream and fun thing to think about, but now it feels real,” shared a student on the trip.

The district hopes to bring another group of students to tour in late spring.

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