Career day, Silicon Valley style

MVHS students learn about jobs in science, tech, engineering, math

Just two days before the Thanksgiving break, Mountain View High School students took some time out of their normal schedules to learn about the multitude of career opportunities available in the fields of science, technology, engineering and math.

Tuesday, Nov. 26 marked the school's second ever STEM Day, replete with speakers from STEM-based industries, hands-on activities and informational booths.

"I'm excited about giving the opportunity to students to see what the world of science is all -- so they can see where their interests can take them," said Dave Grissom, principal of Mountain View High School.

With its second STEM Day, Mountain View High School is taking a page out of Los Altos High School's play book. LAHS has had an entire STEM Week for several years running.

Scheduled speakers at the MVHS event included Kurt Long, aerodynamic research engineer and lab manager of aerospace computing at NASA Ames; Frank Cascarano, a physics instructor at Foothill College; Dr. Christopher Gardner, an associate professor of medicine at Stanford; Ryan McCarthy, a science and technology policy adviser with the California Air Resources Board; Dr. Jill Helms, a Stanford University professor; and Alejandro Garcia, a professor at San Jose State University.

All of the speakers donated their time, according to Grissom.

Scheduled topics of discussion included: what it takes to be an intern at a large engineering firm, the pleasures of understanding physics and the science of nutrition.

"Exposure to scientific careers opens up students' eyes to the greater world and to fields that they hadn't even thought of before," Grissom said.

The principal said he hoped students would be inspired by the presentations and informational booths and might even find a career path.

"In our society, that's where the jobs are going to be," he said. "This valley in particular is at the cutting edge of all that. We have so many resources that are so close to us. It's really nice to be able to bring that directly onto campus for our kids."


Like this comment
Posted by James
a resident of Whisman Station
on Dec 3, 2013 at 2:29 pm

Awesome, us baby boomers are going to need every one of these kids to succeed so that they can support us in our retirement.

Like this comment
Posted by Betsy
a resident of Old Mountain View
on Dec 3, 2013 at 3:19 pm

What about the ARTS?!?!?!?
Next year it needs to be steAm
Science, technology, engenieering, ARTS & math!!

Like this comment
Posted by Martin Omander
a resident of Rex Manor
on Dec 3, 2013 at 4:24 pm

I like Betsy's STEAM acronym that includes Arts :-)

Although, if we are going to be honest with ourselves, it's in the traditional STEM fields that we see a labor shortage and it's in those fields that we need future talent to be able to pay our bills. And it's perfectly doable. Just think how many more smart engineers and scientists we'd get if young women applied to STEM college courses at the same rate as young men do.

Like this comment
Posted by Old Ben
a resident of Shoreline West
on Dec 4, 2013 at 11:06 am

"Son, you've got to get the skills to work in the auto industry! The American auto industry is the envy of the world!"

---Joe Sixpack, to his son, Detroit, 1964

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