November 8, 2022

RK&K Fosters New Generation of Engineers Through STEM/STEAM Education

RK&K supports STEM/STEAM Day by inspiring an interest in the fields of science, technology, engineering, art, and math in the future generation of engineers.

RK&K is proud to recognize and support National STEM/STEAM Day by highlighting their efforts to promote the fields of science, technology, engineering, art, and math and their importance to the next generation of engineers.

Earlier this year at the American Council of Engineering Companies of Georgia’s Introduce A Girl to Engineering Day event, Water Resources/Environmental team members hosted an interactive Bioretention Bonanza Booth which taught the young participants about concepts like stormwater management, green infrastructure, bioretention, and more.

“One of the main advantages of STEM Education is that children are shaped from an early age into becoming future innovators. It is important to inspire these learners from an early age to have leading career goals such as becoming engineers, architects, designers, and many more,” said Director of Water Resources/Environment Lucia Noya, PE. “During STEM events, such as the ACEC Georgia’s Introduce a Girl to Engineering Day, young females had the opportunity to foster their curiosity during our real-world hands-on bioretention activity by allowing them to interact with us, communicate their thoughts and ask scientific questions.”

Demonstrating bioretention.

RK&K’s Baltimore office participates in Bridges, a program providing Baltimore City students with tutoring, after-school services, and summer job placements once they are in high school. The program’s goal is to encourage students who come from backgrounds with limited access and resources to find academic success throughout their schooling experience while introducing them to STEM/STEAM-based career opportunities.

These students experience the full spectrum of STEM/STEAM education, spending several days with Water Resources, Natural Resources, Highway, Planning, Water/Wastewater, Traffic, Structures, and Geotechnical staff. Students also learn the basics of CADD/GIS, perform actual engineering exercises while in each group, and get their hands dirty out in the field.

The firm’s commitment to mentorship also expands to our Richmond office which often hosts local high school juniors for Junior Work Week, an event focused on providing opportunities for students to explore a career or specific job of interest.

This collaboration between high schoolers and staff at RK&K ensures students work closely with a mentor to create a unique and applied learning experience. It allows the student to meet new people, better understand STEM/STEAM and civil engineering while learning about the different tasks for each engineering field and gain insight into different engineering problems.

Project Engineer Gabriela Larus, PE volunteers with these students and said they often struggle to choose a course of study for their future careers.

“RK&K’s dedication to maintaining connections with local schools and their STEM outreach programs has been a way for the younger generation to gain firsthand experience of the importance of STEM to solve real life problems, in hopes that it might ignite a passion for them to pursue a degree in STEM.”

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