Washington Township High School Encourages STEM Career Paths

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WASHINGTON TOWNSHIP – Washington Township High School (WTHS) students had the opportunity to hear five speakers discuss translating their love of science into college majors that could result in fulfilling career paths.
The program, organized by WTHS teachers and science league co-advisors Shannon Hornibrook and Mary Howard, as well as members of the school's Science Leagu, was designed to inspire future scientists to consider the possibilities available to them.
Symposium committee chair Anne Florkiewicz also assisted in organizing the program.
Presenters at the event included Brighid Burgin, who launched her engineering career as a heavy-duty diesel-engine oil formulator at ExxonMobil Research and Engineering in Paulsboro; Dr. Brian F. McBride, who works with physician-scientists from all over the country to study how GE Healthcare’s diagnostic compounds, which illuminate specific proteins in the brain, indicate health and disease; Linda K. Bunnell, who worked on the Comet/Asteroid Protection System, designed low-thrust trajectories to the main asteroid belt for sail craft propelled by solar radiation pressure, performed analysis of Sun-Earth libration point orbits, and provided orbit analyses for various lunar and Mars mission studies; Tabatha Savage, who is working on finalizing and implementing a robotic system to increase efficiency and decrease variability; and Stacy Heil, who has presented at scientific meetings of the American Society for Human Genetics and the International Society for Biological and Environmental Repositories (ISBER).
“What you need to know as scientists is that human beings are depending on you every day to help them feel better and to improve their quality of life,” Dr. McBride said when asked by former WTHS physics teacher David Wright how students find the courage to pursue and advance in science-related fields.
“You have to want to be able to provide meaningful work; you have to have a giving spirit that will benefit people that you will never meet," he added. "It’s the constant ability to change and using science to change the way people think.”
For more information about Washington Township High School, visit wtps.org/wths.

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