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Engineering our future, inspiring young minds

Raytheon sparks the next generation of innovators

National Engineers Week Celebrates Profession, Inspires Students

Hundreds of Raytheon employees shared their passion for engineering with students nationwide in hopes of inspiring them to become the next generation of innovators.

It was all part of the Feb. 16-22 National Engineers Week, a celebration of the engineering profession and an opportunity to interest young students in the field.

"When students are playing sports, video games or music – doing the things they love – they're having fun with math and science, they just don't know it," said Pamela Erickson, vice president of corporate affairs for Raytheon. "Our goal is to keep students interested in educational tracks that will one day lead to careers in science and engineering."

Scientists lead a game of tug of war at Raytheon's Science Thrills Live show at INNOVENTIONS.

According to the United States Department of Commerce, growth in jobs related to science, technology, engineering and math was three times as fast as growth in other jobs in the past 10 years, and those occupations are expected to continue to grow.

But many of today's students aren't making the grade. The U.S. ranks 26th out of 34 countries in mathematics proficiency, and more than a quarter of 15-year-olds do not reach the baseline of mathematics proficiency, according to the Organization for Economic Cooperation and Development's Program for International Student Assessment.

To spark students' interest in science, technology, engineering and math, Raytheon hosted events designed to show students that engineers are professionals who dream up creative and practical solutions – they invent, design and create things that matter. (View the top 10 reasons to love engineering.)

Students participate in the FIRST Lego League event at Raytheon in El Segundo, Calif.

In addition, Raytheon's MathMovesU education initiative launched its second annual "Build it Better" contest, challenging students nationwide to reengineer some part of their school experience.

"Our National Engineers Week events give us the opportunity to connect our engineers with thousands of students to get them thinking about a career path they may not have considered before," Erickson said. "We want them to understand that math and science can open up many doors for an exciting future."

Raytheon also assembled a toolkit of great resources to help parents, teachers and school guidance counselors drive home this message. The toolkit, along with math worksheets and online learning games, can be found at the newly redesigned www.MathMovesU.com.

Girl Scouts experienced science principles first-hand from Science from Scientists.

And Raytheon announced an initiative with WGBH, the Boston-based public broadcaster, to support classroom adoption of Next Generation Science Standards, or NGSS.

The initiative – Teaching NGSS Engineering Design Through Media – provides teachers with the resources they need to bring engineering to life for K-12 students. The resources, featuring content from the award-winning Engineering is Elementary curriculum, FETCH, and NOVA Science Now, are available through PBS LearningMedia, a free, on-demand digital media service for educators and students.

As much as it is a week to spark the interest of future engineers, National Engineers Week is also a time to recognize and celebrate the passionate individuals who create and innovate to make a difference in the world today.

Raytheon recognized its engineers for their outstanding contributions to the company's legacy of innovation through a variety of activities, including the Excellence in Engineering and Technology (EiET) Awards, Raytheon's highest technical honor.

Published: 10/17/2014

Last Updated: 01/26/2016

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