By Mario Icari, Naval Facilities Engineering Command Southwest Public Affairs
SAN DIEGO (NNS) -- NAVFAC's Lt. Andrew Descary represented NAVFAC Southwest as one of 10 engineers who spoke during an Aug. 10 American Society of Civil Engineers (ASCE) event called Evening of Dreaming Big in San Diego.
Local engineering professional societies invited 100 students in grades 4-12 and their parents to the Fleet Science Center to see ASCE's film "Dream Big - Engineering Our World," meet with engineering role models, participate in engineering activities, and compete for a chance to win prizes.
"Outreach events like this offer students and families the opportunities to meet engineers, talk about engineering education and encourage the next generation of engineers," said Descary, NAVFAC Civil Engineer Corps west accessions officer. "From the enthusiasm of the students and parents, I know that there are some motivated engineers that will be joining us in the decade to come."
Descary shared his story with the students along with ASCE volunteers Nardin Metwashla, Rachel Norris, Vanessa Tarronas, Karibia Baillargeon, Eric Kelly, Mishi Joshi, and Kimberly Wender.
"The theme of the night quickly became, even when you think you cannot be an engineer, keep going, keep working, and you can do it," said Descary.
Engineering role models at the ASCE table encouraged students to build a structure using toothpicks and marshmallows and place it on a shake table made of gelatin dessert.
"One student was very excited about engineering," said Descary. "He received encouragement to study hard and develop a love of math and science. I would not be surprised if we read about him winning a local science fair competition next year in the local paper."