Thursday, January 26, 2017

UNO Celebrates National Engineers Week with Middle and High School Expo and Screening of “Dream Big” Movie

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Everywhere you look, you can see the impact engineers have on our world. If today you drove on a street, walked on a sidewalk, worked on a computer, used your smartphone, took a medication, opened a carton of milk or boarded a plane, you encountered the work of the world’s engineers.

On Feb. 21, the University of New Orleans celebrates the contributions of engineers and the value of engineering studies with a daylong event for area middle and high school students. In honor of National Engineers Week, more than 1,500 students from several parishes in the metro New Orleans area are expected to descend on the University from 9 a.m. to 2 p.m. to enjoy dozens of interactive exhibits that include robotics, an underwater remote-operated vehicle, interactive conveyor belts, laser communications, storm simulation activities and Shell Oil’s off-shore virtual reality experience.

Students also will be treated to a screening of “Dream Big: Engineering Our World,” a feature-length film narrated by Jeff Bridges that is soon to premiere in IMAX and big screen theaters. Produced in partnership with the American Society of Civil Engineers, it is a first-of-its-kind film that explores the human ingenuity behind engineering marvels large and small, and, producers say, promises to “transform how we think about engineering.”

Students will be able to interact with industry leaders from NASA, Shell Oil, Entergy, the U.S. Army Corps of Engineers, Boeing, Laitram, Brown Foundation, Lake Pontchartrain Basin Foundation, Waldemar S. Nelson and Co., Bartlett Engineering, MISO Energy, Atmos Energy, Girl Scouts and more.

The University of New Orleans offers the only civil, electrical, mechanical, and naval architecture and marine engineering programs in the metro area, making it an ideal host for such an event, said UNO President John Nicklow.

“As President and as an engineer myself, I am excited to welcome students to learn more about the engineering discipline and about the opportunities for a career in engineering,” Nicklow said. “The field offers high quality job opportunities that are expected to continue to grow. It is important that the next generation understands those opportunities and capitalize on them if we are going to grow as a nation.”

Faculty and students from the College of Engineering will be manning exhibits as well as representatives from student organizations such as Institute of Electrical and Electronics Engineers (IEEE), American Society of Civil Engineers (ASCE), National Society of Black Engineers (NSBE), the Society of Women Engineers (SWE), American Society of Mechanical Engineers (ASME) and the Society of Naval Architects and Marine Engineers (SNAME). Starting at noon, visitors are also invited to join the UNO campus as it celebrates Mardi Gras with an on-campus parade that will feature floats by UNO’s academic colleges.

Kim Jovanovich, assistant dean of engineering, said the event is part of UNO’s ongoing commitment to educate and inspire young students who have an interest in pursuing careers in engineering.

“Society depends on the evolution of technology for its strength and one of the pillars of that foundation lies in engineering—it’s the E in STEM,” Jovanovich said. “It does not take long to see the effects of engineering in our lives—new means of communications with advancing cellular technology, cars driving themselves, new medical procedures using advanced instrumentation and measurement methods, new building structures not previously possible, and growing emphasis on planetary  exploration with robots and humans working together. UNO finds itself in the middle of this excitement as an metropolitan research university with a diverse engineering college supporting civil and environmental, electrical, mechanical, and naval architecture and marine engineering programs.”

The event is made possible by the College of Engineering, American Society of Civil Engineers and Core Element. For more information, contact Stephanie Moore-Kreamer at

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University of New Orleans College of Engineering
American Society of Civil Engineers
Core Element