The demand for engineers is rising. Yet we are faced with discouraging statistics on the number of students considering engineering careers, and disappointing math and science scores that place U.S. students’ performance below many industrialized nations. America is simply not going to have the engineers it needs to stay competitive and remain a world a leader in innovation without more investment. Our professions must be able to reach out to our young students to excite, attract and interest them in careers in engineering and related fields.
We can do this by lending support to Science, Technology, Engineering and Math (STEM) programs that inspire future generations of engineers. Within SAME, our Posts have had many successful K-12 programs and Engineer Week activities. Our focus on STEM will pull it all together and expand our successes in more and different ways including school visits, STEM-related programs, science fairs, inspirational mentoring, and more.
The Society of American Military Engineers offers a very unique series of Engineering and Construction Camps designed for High School students who excel in math, science and technical courses and are interested in pursuing engineering in college. These one-week camps are high energy, hands-on events for students from across the country and around the world. The camps are led by a professional staff of engineers from both private industry and the military services. Each camp has it own unique focus and theme and is a one-of-a-kind opportunity to learn what engineers do from professional engineers, learn practical skills and gain exposure to the military services. Camps include: U.S. Army Camp in Vicksburg, Miss.; U.S. Air Force Academy Camp in Colorado Springs, Colo.; U.S. Navy Seabees Camp in Port Hueneme, Calif.; and the U.S. Marine Corps Camp at Camp Lejuene, N.C. For detailed information on the SAME Engineering & Construction Camps program, visit www.same.org/camps.
The West Point Bridge Design Contest is an excellent program designed to interest students in engineering and construction by challenging them to design a virtual bridge. A sample PowerPoint will help you get your students/school started. Project and information. [PDF]
SAME proudly supports Mathcounts, a national competition promoting mathematic achievement at the "middle school" level. Students participate in exciting events that challenge students' math skills, develop self-confidence and reward achievement. The program has more than 17,000 volunteers who participate annually. Mathcounts has received two White House Citations as an outstanding private sector initiative.
SAME encourages all Posts to work with local Boy Scout Troops to provide training and leadership for merit badges on Architecture and Engineering. The Boy Scouts Merit Badge program currently offers more than 100 badges. To get involved in this program, please contact your local Post.
The Society of Women Engineers has initiated an Engineering Patch for Girl Scouts age 9-14. The Engineering Patch program provides an opportunity for girls to earn a special engineering patch by exploring seven different engineering activities: programming robots, drawing views, making rubber items, building bridges, using a CAD program, making planes and rockets and exploring engineering careers.
The National Engineers Week Future City Competition provides an educational engineering program for seventh- and eighth-grade students that combines a stimulating and fun challenge with hands-on applications for students to present their vision of the city of the future. Click Here to find out more about this competition.
SAME encourages all Posts to become involved in the Learning for Life Program as we continue to work to encourage young people to explore careers in engineering. Learn more about the Learning for Life Program.