Signal leaders host national science, humanities symposium
May 6, 2010
BETHESDA, Md. -- Our utmost efforts to encourage and develop younger generations in science, engineering and mathematics are vital to our nation. In helping with this goal, the U.S. Army Research Development and Engineering Command Commanding General Maj. Gen. Nick Justice hosted the 48th National Junior Science and Humanities Symposium award ceremony May 1 here.
Justice and many other RDECOM leaders came into the Army research and development community after starting out in the Signal Corps.
Justice spoke to bright high school students -- the future of our nation's science and technology force -- while he helped award $144,000 in scholarships. He told them how important their research will be for the nation and encouraged the students to look beyond high school towards a post secondary education and a future career in science, engineering and mathematics at one of our research laboratories.
"Think about what you're going to do with your education and talent," he said to the packed ballroom at the awards banquet. "Choose an exciting life - one that is meaningful to you and valuable to other people. The future of this country is sitting with you."
The higher-order thought processes and learning skills developed among the students during their research exposure are impeccable. Students need to see and hear from the Soldiers that will benefit from their research; this interaction will play an important role in the future success of our Army. Students, their parents and teachers alike harnessed the opportunity to talk to each of the Soldiers present during the symposium.
More than 10,000 high school students throughout the United States, Puerto Rico and Department of Defense Schools in Europe and the Pacific Rim competed, and only 240 students (96 student research presenters) were selected to attend the JSHS symposium hosted by the Army Research Laboratory.
The students qualified for attendance by submitting and presenting their own original science research papers. In addition to any scholarships received at the qualifying regional competitions, national finalists came to Bethesda to compete for a second college scholarship worth up to $16,000, a chance to attend the London International Youth Science Forum and to present their research at the Army Science Conference.
The U.S. Army, Navy, and Air Force recognized the accomplishments of these talented students and their teachers by also affording them an opportunity to interact with scientists and engineers representing military and federal research and development laboratories. The tour included RDECOM laboratories such as the Army Research Laboratory and Edgewood Chemical Biological Center (Adelphi and Aberdeen Proving Grounds, Md.
Officials said the level of motivation and excitement displayed by the students during their research presentations was amazing. Many had their mind set on obtaining a master's or Ph.D., with the ultimate goal of doing research in support of our Soldiers.
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