Port Participates in Engineers Week at Area Schools

SAN PEDRO, Calif. – March 15, 2007 – Port of Los Angeles engineering professionals recently participated in Engineers Week, an annual program designed to inspire future engineers, with special programs at local elementary, middle and high schools from February 19 to March 7.

“We are proud of our Engineers Week program,” said Mike Christensen, the Port’s deputy executive director in charge of engineering development.  “Many students are unaware of what engineers do or believe a career as an engineer is unobtainable.  We break down these misconceptions and introduce them to real engineers from the Port who answer questions and conduct hands-on activities to show how rewarding a career in engineering can be.” 

The Port conducted informational workshops with more than 300 students in individual classes from Broad Avenue Elementary in Wilmington, Dana Middle School in San Pedro, and Banning High in Wilmington. Students viewed a presentation about the type of work Port engineers perform daily and how their jobs drive Port operations.  Students were also placed into small groups where they worked with a Port engineer to create miniature projects, like a Popsicle-stick bridge and structure made out of paper.  Their projects were reviewed and judged and the winning groups were awarded prizes.

The Port’s program was part of National Engineers Week, a formal coalition of more than 70 engineering, education, and cultural societies, and more than 50 corporations and government agencies, dedicated to raising public awareness of engineers’ positive contributions to our quality of life.  The goal of the Port’s program is to stimulate and develop student interest in the various engineering disciplines, spark more interest in math and science, and encourage students to seek undergraduate degrees in engineering.

The Port has participated in Engineers Week since 2004 and has worked with more than 1000 students through the program.  Response from students and teachers has been positive and the Port plans to expand the program to additional schools in 2008.

Celebrating its Centennial in 2007, the Port of Los Angeles is America's premier port. As the leading seaport in the nation in terms of shipping container volume and cargo value, the Port generates 259,000 regional jobs and $8.4 billion in annual wages and tax revenues. A proprietary department of the City of Los Angeles, the Port is self-supporting and does not receive taxpayer dollars. At the Port of Los Angeles, high priority is placed on responsible and sustainable growth initiatives, combined with high security, environmental stewardship and community outreach. For its industry leading environmental initiatives, the Port received two Environmental Protection Agency awards in 2006. The Port of Los Angeles – A Cleaner Port. A Brighter Future.