News

My Brother’s Keeper

By Valerie Larkin

Photography By Randy Montoya

Wednesday, March 30, 2016

White House-launched program brings STEM to life

Sandia hosts middle school and high school boys

White House-launched program brings STEM to life

On March 1, more than 60 local middle and high school boys toured Sandia/New Mexico as part of the White House My Brother’s Keeper (MBK) initiative.

President Barack Obama launched the initiative in 2014 to provide underrepresented young men with mentors and enriching educational opportunities to inspire them to pursue higher education and careers in STEM fields. Ten DOE labs hosted events in celebration of MBK National Week at the Labs Feb. 29-March 4.

“For MBK, we opened the Labs to give students access and visibility into what we do here. Our goal is to provide them with an engaging hands-on learning experience that sparks their interest in pursuing a career in STEM,” says Div. 3000 VP Melonie Parker.

Students from Native American Community Academy, Technology Leadership High School, and Hayes Middle School spent the day interacting with Sandia researchers who discussed their work and the paths that led them to the Labs.

On March 2, researchers and executives from Sandia/California were welcomed to Lawrence Livermore National Laboratory to participate in its MBK event. Electrical engineer and technical project manager Muferihat Abduljelil (8534) benefited from similar programs in her youth, and she volunteered at MBK because she wanted to give back. “I see how this type of program can positively influence kids by taking away the ‘intimidating’ parts of science and math, and helping them explore the fun side of it,” she says.

In the photos above and below, boys get an inside look at Sandia's microelectronics fabrication facility. Says Sandia HR and Communications VP Melonie Parker: "For MBK, we opened the Labs to give students access and visibility into what we do here. Our goal is to provide them with an engaging hands-on learning experience that sparks their interest in pursuing a career in STEM."