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Tomorrow’s scientists, engineers and technologists are today’s middle- and high-school students. Lockheed Martin works to advance student interest in Science, Technology, Engineering and Math (STEM). We believe our own seasoned corps of engineers can get students excited about entering these critically important fields.
Our STEM outreach outreach activities help students gain confidence through exploration, using visual, auditory and hands-on experiences.
In 2012, our activities included the following events and programs:
- USA Science & Engineering Festival
We were the founding and presenting host of the hugely successful USA Science & Engineering Festival, held in Washington, D.C., in April 2012. The event drew diverse crowds of all ages and had record-breaking attendance of more than 200,000 people over three days. Including pre-festival and satellite events, more than 550,000 people around the world took part. The Expo featured more than 3,000 hands-on activities and 150 live performances. Nearly 400 Lockheed Martin employees volunteered to support our 44 interactive exhibits
- Innovate the Future Competition
We hosted two competitions in 2012 to recognize our 100th anniversary and the company’s legacy of engineering and scientific excellence. In the United States, our Chief Technology Officer led a competition challenging employees to come up with ideas related to strategic needs in cyber security and health care. Over two months, nearly 700 ideas were offered by employees and then judged against criteria that included creativity and potential business impact. We also held a worldwide contest on how innovation can enable a more secure future for the planet. Non-employee winners included:
- Moble Benedict, assistant research scientist in Aerospace Engineering at the University of Maryland, won the grand prize for his concept of an efficient vertical axis wind turbine for clean energy generation in urban environments. He will receive $25,000.
- James Mutitu, researcher at the University of Delaware, placed second and will receive $10,000 for his idea to enhance solar cell efficiency through improved light-trapping techniques.
- Raymond Canzanese, doctoral candidate at Drexel University, was a third place winner, receiving $5,000 for a malware-detection technique that uses data fusion.
- Dick Dillon, representing Innovaision, LLC, won a third place for a concept that uses online avatars to provide counseling services.
- Tamara Monti, doctoral candidate at Italy's Universita' Politecnica delle Marche, won third place for a novel concept using photonic sensors to detect body tumors and identify the body's response to cancer therapies.
- Nationwide Robotics Curriculum
Robotics is a great way to engage young people in science. Since 2009, we have supported efforts with 4-H, a leading U.S. youth-development organization, to develop and launch the first comprehensive robotics curriculum for youths aged 9 to 18. Our support from 2011 to 2012 enabled nearly 1,100 young Americans to join 87 new 4-H robotics clubs. In June 2012, we pledged a three-year $1.5 million gift to support additional 4-H science programs, professional development and volunteer training. We plan to harness the expertise of our employees for 4-H mentoring efforts. We are also the proud sponsor of the 2012, 2013 and 2014 4-H National Youth Science Day, where hundreds of thousands of young people from across the country compete in a National Science Experiment.
In 2012, more than 350 of our employees mentored students and assisted teams for FIRST Robotics competitions. We supported 150 FIRST teams representing all four competition levels: FIRST Robotics Competition, FIRST Tech Challenge, FIRST LEGO League and Junior FIRST LEGO League. Much more than a technical challenge, FIRST teaches students how to communicate with each other and with adults. They develop business plans and learn how “coopetition,” a blend of cooperation and competition, is critical to success.
- Engaging Girls in STEM
Our engineers helped to engage approximately 1,000 middle school girls in science by participating in the annual Girls Exploring Science, Technology, Engineering and Math event hosted by the Society of Women Engineers in Denver, Co. Employee volunteers led three hands-on workshops on exobiology (life on other planets), how math, science and engineering help defend the United States and hands-on mechanical engineering projects.