Linda Homer, front left, NAWCWDâ€™s coordinator for the Expanding Your Horizons (EYH) Conference, and Joan Johnson, front right, head of NAWCWDâ€™s Systems Engineering Department, recognize volunteers who supported the EYH Conference. Homer hosted a ceremony May 21 to thank the 85 volunteers who supported the conference that was held March 12 at the McLean Lab. Last yearâ€™s Team Member of the Year Andrew Tree announced that Linda Finco was this yearâ€™s Team Member of the Year. Finco was the chairperson for the workshop committee. There were a total of 17 hands-on workshops at the event, including six new ones. â€œShe really stood out as the volunteer of the year,â€ Tree said. Johnson presented letters of appreciation signed by Scott Oâ€™Neil, NAWCWD executive director, to the volunteers who were in attendance. She said that when she was in middle school, neither she nor her friends thought about becoming engineers. And, while studying chemical engineering in college there were very few other females, noting that in her first job there were two females in a department of 200 scientists and engineers. â€œI see that trend getting a lot better,â€ Johnson said. â€œItâ€™s getting better because of events exactly like Expanding Your Horizons.â€ More than 140 middle school girls attended the 11th annual conference held on March 12 at the McLean Lab. After the conference, 96 percent of the girls said yes or maybe to considering careers in math and science. â€œIf you changed even just one girlâ€™s mind it was worth it,â€ Johnson said.
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