[ skip to content ]

ASTRONAUT TO KEYNOTE 2ND ANNUAL WOMENGINEERS DAY

NASA astronaut Susan Still-Kilrain will be the keynote speaker for Old Dominion's second annual Womengineers Day, an initiative aimed at the education, recruitment and retention of female students from elementary school through college. The free event will be held 9 a.m. to 4 p.m. Saturday, March 9.

Hosted by the College of Engineering and Technology, Womengineers Day is designed for students, professional engineers and teachers of future engineers. The event will provide information, support systems, networking opportunities, scholarship and financial aid information, and address issues facing women in engineering.

A special track of sessions designed specifically for middle and high school teachers will address meshing engineering and technology lessons with SOL requirements. Teachers will receive recertification points for attending.

"Although Old Dominion's College of Engineering and Technology is one of the most diverse in the state, engineering as a whole continues to be challenged in recruiting and retaining female engineers," said Dean William Swart. "In order for our country to have the quantity and quality of engineers that will be required to maintain our competitiveness in the global marketplace, it is imperative that we reach out to groups that traditionally have been underrepresented."

The event will begin with a plenary session at 9 a.m. in the North Cafeteria of Webb Center featuring motivational speaker Pamela McCawley-Bell, an associate professor of industrial engineering and management systems at the University of Central Florida.

Still-Kilrain will deliver the keynote address at noon in Webb Center. Lunch is free with online registration at www.odu.edu/engr/womengineers.

A veteran of two space flights, Still-Kilrain piloted STS-83 and STS-94 in 1997 and has logged nearly 500 hours in space. She began her career as a U.S. Navy aviator in 1987, where she served as flight instructor in the TA-4J Skyhawk, pilot of EA-6A Electric Intruders and pilot of F-14 Tomcats. She has logged over 3,000 flight hours in more than 30 different aircraft.

Still-Kilrain has received the Defense Superior Service Medal, Navy Meritorious Service Medal, Navy Commendation Medal, Navy Achievement Medal, NASA Space Flight Medal, the National Defense Service Medal, a Ten Outstanding Young Americans Award from the U.S. Junior Chamber of Commerce and the Good Scout Award.

Other sessions include:

10 a.m. - "The Engineering Workplace for Women"; "The Engineering Experience"; and "How Can We Use Virginia's SOLs for Meaningful Mathematics and Science Instruction?"

11 a.m. - "New Professionals and Current Students"; "Changing Career Paths"; "Preparing Middle School Girls for Math/Science-Related Careers"; and "Using TI-83 Graphing Calculators to Increase SOL Test Scores for Algebra I, Geometry and Algebra II Students."

1:45 p.m. - "Balancing Family and Career"; "The Engineering Experience"; "Helping Middle School Students Maximize Their Potential for Success in Math and Science"; and "What All Science Teachers Need to Know About SOLs and Hands-on Learning."

2:30 p.m. - "Breaking the Stereotype Algebra I SOL Test Preparation"; and "Using TI-83 Graphing Calculators to Increase SOL Test Scores for Algebra I, Geometry and Algebra II Students."

3:15 p.m. - "Q & A With Parents and Students"; "Helping Middle School Students Maximize Their Potential for Success in Math and Science"; and "What All Science Teachers Need to Know About SOLs and Hands-on Learning."

"Engineering is a profession that provides an incredible diversity of opportunity for career growth and personal advancement. Unfortunately, I believe the profession has become stereotyped into a very narrow, highly technical image which either intimidates or does not interest many young people now, especially young women," said Womengineers chair Ruth Martin, associate director for program integration at NASA Langley Research Center.

"I am hopeful that a focused recruitment effort aimed at the underrepresented workforce will serve to remedy the current decline in minority enrollment in engineering and science."

Womengineers Day is co-sponsored by Virginia's Center for Innovative Technology, Northrop Grumman Newport News, Virginia Spacegrant Consortium, Dominion Energy and WHRO.

For more information call 683-3789 or visit www.odu.edu/engr/womengineers.

This article was posted on: March 1, 2002

Old Dominion University
Office of University Relations

Room 100 Koch Hall Norfolk, Virginia 23529-0018
Telephone: 757-683-3114
http://www.odu.edu/news

Old Dominion University is an equal opportunity, affirmative action institution.