Guest blog post by Darlene Mullen, technology and pre-engineering teacher for Friendship Academy at Cherry Hill in Baltimore, MD.
I have worked in the manufacturing and engineering environment for many years prior to becoming an educator for the Baltimore City Public School System. I am passionate about exposing our youth to the many career choices they can make in a manufacturing environment. My participation with several S.T.E.M. programs have afforded me the opportunity to broaden my students exposure to many manufacturing and engineering roles and how focusing on science, technology, engineering and mathematics will give them the foundation they need to thrive in the fields of manufacturing and engineering. S.T.E.M. is woven into the schools’ fabric. We offer Gateway to Technology, a pre-engineering program and Smart Lab Creative Learning Systems to our middles school students. As always S.T.E.M. is embedded in our everyday curriculum.
If our eighth-grade students are exposed to S.T.E.M careers and opportunities while they are in middles school, they will be able to make sound decisions when choosing a high school to attend next academic school year. They will be able to choose high schools that offer the sciences and mathematics classes needed to pursue engineering and technology degree upon completion of high school. Many of our eighth graders are already talking about pursuing technical fields that will allow them to become essential employees of the manufacturing environment.
Our school, Friendship Academy at Cherry Hill is located in the Southwest area of Baltimore City, with a population of five hundred plus students, who are always willing and ready to learn. My students and I are very excited about spending time at Northrop Grumman during Manufacturing Day to gain an up close and personal understanding of the importance and operations of manufacturing.