Huntington Ingalls Industries Awards More Than $100,000 In STEM Grants To 26 Gulf Coast Schools

ingalls_stem_grants2018_7242db44-a396-4f23-a754-f732a294de47-prv Huntington Ingalls Industries Awards More Than $100,000 In STEM Grants To 26 Gulf Coast SchoolsPASCAGOULA, Miss., Feb. 06, 2018 (GLOBE NEWSWIRE) — Huntington Ingalls Industries’ (NYSE:HII) Ingalls Shipbuilding division has awarded more than $101,000 in grants to 26 science, technology, engineering and mathematics (STEM) projects and initiatives from schools and educational organizations in Mississippi and Alabama.

This is the 10th year for Ingalls’ STEM program. The company has awarded more than $911,000 for STEM-related projects during that period.

“I want to thank the educators in this room for making such a substantial contribution to our workforce,” Edmond Hughes, Ingalls’ vice president of human resources and administration, said at a morning ceremony held at the shipyard. “Each year I’m excited to present these grants for such fascinating science, technology, engineering and math projects that will engage hundreds of students in our communities. Ingalls remains committed to helping ensure that our local schools have the resources needed to produce students who are ready to join our ever-growing workforce.”

The 2018 STEM grant recipients and projects are:

  • Agricola Elementary: Fourth-graders will collaborate to explore, design, build and program a robot to perform certain missions based on a real-world problem. $4,000
  • Alabama School of Math and ScienceFunds will be used to purchase a Redbird Flight Simulator, which will allow students to practice basic flight maneuvers such as: straight and level flight, how to turn an airplane without losing altitude, powered climbs, etc. $4,715
  • Alabama School of Math and Science: Funds will be used to purchase Raspberry Pi 3, Raspberry Pi Zero W and Pi-Top robots. These credit card-sized robots have the latest technologies that offer students an array of possibilities to extend their learning beyond the classroom. $3,815
  • Anniston Avenue Elementary: Second- and third-grade students will be introduced to robotics and programming using Lego WeDo 2.0 classroom sets. $5,000
  • Calcedeaver Elementary: Third- through sixth-grade students will form a robotics team. The team will begin building and programming robots using a Lego Mindstorm kit. $1,500
  • Cora Castlen Elementary: Applying their knowledge of ecosystems and food webs, students will test water quality and also the oil-absorbing properties of different materials as they engineer a process for cleaning up an oil spill. $5,000
  • Dauphin Island Sea Lab: Remotely operated vehicles (ROVs) are now widely used in marine science research, exploration and industry, reflecting the trend of increasing dependency on technology in STEM fields. $1,572
  • FABLAB Jackson County: Students will participate in a camp where they will learn about basic electronics and computer programming skills by building and programming a robot that will traverse a maze autonomously. $4,719
  • Gautier Middle School: Students will create a family STEM night for the middle schools in the district. Students will facilitate at a variety of centers in which parents and students can build and become excited about technology. $4,035
  • Gulfport High SchoolStudents will use anatomy and physiology, health sciences and math classes to build collaborative, co-teaching lessons that show the relationship between the medical field, math and science using zSpace technology, a virtual reality platform. $5,000
  • Jubilee BEST (Boosting Engineering Science and Technology): This is a volunteer-based program for middle and high schools that teaches skill sets for STEM careers. Students are provided raw materials and must design and manufacture a functioning robot as well as write an engineering notebook. $2,972
  • Katherine Hankins Middle School: Students will design three-dimensional objects to solve engineering problems, print the objects, then test and redesign for improvements. $3,587
  • Lizana Elementary School: Funds will be used to purchase materials and printables to create STEM bins and challenges for first-graders. Using a digital camera, students will take pictures of their structures throughout the project process and upload them onto a Chromebook. They will use Chromebooks as a digital tool to publish and share their projects. $5,000
  • Mary G. Montgomery High SchoolStudents will utilize equipment such as a microplate reader and gel docking station to quantitatively measure molecules such as proteins, sugars, DNA and many more chemical products. $4,887
  • North Woolmarket Elementary and Middle School: Students will receive a six-month subscription to Kiwi Company. Kiwi Crate will provide a new STEM project for the students each month. $2,190
  • Ocean Springs Gifted EducationFunds will be used to build a KEVA Corner. In KEVA Corner, students will create original works of art and design and build architectural structures. $4,347
  • Ocean Springs Upper Elementary SchoolFunds will be used to purchase a variety of materials that students will use to experience the thrill of engineering and problem-solving as they are challenged to create a particular structure. $2,526
  • Pascagoula High SchoolStudents will become inspired to learn through exploration in an enzyme activity using cellobiase, a key enzyme associated with biofuel production. $5,000
  • Pascagoula High SchoolStudents will utilize digital microscopes to view specimens in greater detail than the standard compound light microscope. Students can view a live image, capture a still image for comparison or create short video clips of microscopic organisms. $4,819
  • Pass Christian Elementary: This robotics project will incorporate the Dash and Dot curriculum in second grade, the Lego WeDo 2.0 curriculum in third grade and the Lego Ev3 Mindstorms in grades four and five. $5,000
  • Singing River Academy: This project uses virtual reality technology to foster social integration of learners within a classroom environment by bringing together students who have different learning styles and needs. $5,000
  • St. Martin High SchoolStudents will explore STEM-related career fields through research and the use of K’Nex bridges and simple machines as well as how robots are essential in the construction of everyday products. $2,075
  • St. Mary Catholic SchoolThe development of the STEAM Plant’s Outdoor Classroom will provide students with an innovative learning environment that becomes an educational model that transcends the traditional classroom, while enhancing the quality of the school environment. $3,045
  • St. Patrick Catholic High School: A traditional classroom will be transformed into a STEM lab equipped with various tools such as software, virtual resources and interactive activities to prepare and excite students about STEM. Students will be involved in every aspect of the design and layout of the lab$5,000
  • Tanner Williams Elementary: Grant funds will be used to purchase instructional resources for students in kindergarten through fifth grades. Library books will be available for teachers to check out for inclusion in classroom lessons and for students to check out as well. In addition, items for exploration, creation and design will be provided to introduce STEM to students and to extend classroom lessons with engaging, hands-on resources. $5,000
  • Woolmarket Elementary: A stations-based learning platform will allow students with communication deficits to interact with general education students while completing specific STEM activities under the direction and supervision of the school’s speech-language pathologist. $1,527

Huntington Ingalls Industries is America’s largest military shipbuilding company and a provider of professional services to partners in government and industry. For more than a century, HII’s Newport News and Ingalls shipbuilding divisions in Virginia and Mississippi have built more ships in more ship classes than any other U.S. naval shipbuilder. HII’s Technical Solutions division provides a wide range of professional services through its Fleet Support, Integrated Mission Solutions, Nuclear & Environmental, and Oil & Gas groups. Headquartered in Newport News, Virginia, HII employs nearly 37,000 people operating both domestically and internationally. For more information, visit:

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Fuel Your School, Chevron Pump $210,000 Into Local Classrooms

Chevron-Pecan-Park-donation-222 Fuel Your School, Chevron Pump $210,000 Into Local Classrooms

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Chevron-Pecan-Park-donation-222 Fuel Your School, Chevron Pump $210,000 Into Local Classrooms

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Chevron contributed $210,000 to local public school projects in October and November through the annual Fuel Your School program and an additional company contribution.

Chevron’s 2017 Fuel Your School program generated $50,000 to help fund 70 classroom projects, including 33 focused on science, technology, engineering and math (STEM), to help connect real world experiences to classroom learning for 8,803 students at 33 Jackson County public schools.

Through the Fuel Your School program, Chevron contributed $1 when consumers purchased eight or more gallons of fuel at participating Chevron and Texaco stations in Jackson County during the month of October, generating $50,000 to help fund eligible classroom projects at local public schools. Pascagoula Refinery employees were able to contribute an additional $160,000 through employee gift code redemptions on the DonorsChoose.org site.

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Gautier High senior wins drawing for MGCCC scholarship

 

Todd-Trenchard-Check-Presentation-December-2017-3-1024x682 Gautier High senior wins drawing for MGCCC scholarship

Todd Trenchard, executive director of the Bacot McCarty Foundation, presents a scholarship check to Avery Elbin.  Elbin, a senior at Gautier High School, will be attending Mississippi Gulf Coast Community College beginning fall 2018.

Avery Elbin, a senior at Gautier High School, won a $1,000 scholarship to Mississippi Gulf Coast Community College as part of a drawing at the 2017 MGCCC President’s Breakfast held on November 30 at the college’s Hospitality and Resort Management Center in Biloxi. 

 

Elbin was one of almost 50 students and their families attending the event.  Each student was entered into the drawing.  A dual-enrolled student at MGCCC, Elbin is enrolling at the college in fall 2018.

 

The President’s Breakfast is an annual event geared toward academically gifted high school seniors.  The Bacot McCarty Foundation and its executive director, Todd Trenchard, provided the scholarship.

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BEN Launches High School Mentoring Program

BEN-mentoring-Bruce-listens BEN Launches High School Mentoring Program

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The Pascagoula Refinery’s Black Employee Network (BEN) recently launched a mentoring program with Moss Point High School (MPHS) for the 2017-2018 academic year.

The mission of the program is to offer students a diverse view of career opportunities available within Chevron. Approximately 160 ninth-graders are participating in the program.

Each month, BEN hosts a career day session at the high school. Chevron volunteers use an interactive activity to explain to the students what their careers entail, and offer advice about how students can pursue the different roles presented.

“We want to make sure we’re giving a broad perspective, so we feature both technical and non-technical elds during the presentations,” explained program organizer Makamba Sackey (process engineer). “So far, there has been phenomenal support from employees and management to support the growth and learning of the youth in our community.”

Special thanks to the following BEN members and re nery employees who have assisted with the mentoring program: Reggie Aaron (Technical), Marcus Coleman (Technical), Kentrell Owens (Technical), Khristine Pizarro (Technical), Stephanie Castleberry (Lab), James Williams II (PSM), Kristin Davis (Technical) Rachelle Lancon (Technical), Josh Boor (Technical), Shane Burns (Technical) and Bruce Chinn (Refinery Manager).

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Learn about Wildlife, Conservation at Crane Fest 2017

23334303_10155200077398215_1353545782970217622_o Learn about Wildlife, Conservation at Crane Fest 2017

Families wanting some outdoor adventure this weekend can participate in the 2017 Crane Fest at the Mississippi Sandhill Crane National Wildlife Refuge.

From 9 a.m. to 3 p.m. on Saturday, Dec. 9, Crane Fest will feature a variety of activities ranging from archery and air rifle demos, to meeting live birds of prey, boat tours, traditional Choctaw dance and music and more.

Melissa Perez from the Mississippi Sandhill Crane National Wildlife Refuge said the event will have something for every member of the family from children to adults.

“It’s a good opportunity for people to get behind the scenes of what we do here at the refuge,” Perez said. “It’s a completely free event and will have a lot of fun activities for everyone.”

Perez said some of the highlights include the live presentations with hawks, owls and falcons from the Environmental Studies Center, as well as insects from all over the world in the Audubon Institute’s BugMobile. In addition, there will be special demonstrations of traditional Choctaw dance and music, guided native plant tours and eco-tours through cruises on the bayou. If weather permits, the afternoon will finish with a prescribed burn demonstration and a discussion about how prescribed burns are used to conserve the habitat.

Running concurrently will be a Festival of Conservation, where 16 conservation-minded partner organizations from around the area will have interactive, hands-on activities and booths to celebrate 42 years of conservation. 

“We can’t do it alone,” Perez said. “This is a chance for visitors to meet our partners and see the work they do, too.”

Perez said the pine savanna habitat at the refuge is extremely unique to the area and the United States, and the festival hopes to create a greater appreciation of it and the conservation efforts through all the different activities and presentations. 

“This will be a great educational open house event,” Perez said. “It also offers the chance for families to get outdoors and have fun.”

For more information about the event visit https://www.fws.gov/refuge/Mississippi_Sandhill_Crane/visitor_activities/40th_Anniversary_Celebration/.

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MGCCC’s Process Operations Technology program receives Gold Level endorsement

20171101_174537-1024x768 MGCCC’s Process Operations Technology program receives Gold Level endorsement

The Process Operations Technology program at Mississippi Gulf Coast Community College’s Jackson County Campus has received a Gold Level endorsement from Central Gulf Industrial Alliance (CGIA).  CGIA is an industry-driven consortium of leading employers along the Mississippi, Alabama, and Florida Gulf Coast. From left are CGIA representatives Eddie Clayton and Bonnie Tully; Tommie Broome, Process Operations instructor at MGCCC; John Poelma, chair of the Career-Technical department at MGCCC’s Jackson County Campus; and CGIA representatives Frank Jelercic and Hayleigh Barlar.

The Process Operations Technology program at Mississippi Gulf Coast Community College’s Jackson County Campus has received a Gold Level endorsement from Central Gulf Industrial Alliance (CGIA).  CGIA is an industry-driven consortium of leading employers along the Mississippi, Alabama and Florida Gulf Coast.

“Recognition from the consortium means that we meet and exceed standards set by the industries for potential employees,” said Tommie Broome, Process Operations Technology instructor. “They researched our curriculum and conducted an extensive on-site audit and inspection to ascertain compliance with safety standards and course content.  They also look at placement as a measure of the program’s success.”

The consortium leads a nationally recognized evaluation and endorsement process for regional industrial craft training programs to ensure these operate at or above industry standards and meet the workforce needs of the member’s industries. It offers three different levels of endorsement based on a scorecard. Gold is the top award, followed by silver and bronze, which is the lowest level. MGCCC’s Process Operations Technology program scored a Gold Level endorsement, which means that that the college has a quality program, is recognized by the industries that are hiring students and encourages others to look at MGCC students as a valuable resource. 

The Process Operations Technology program was started in 2003.  Currently, it serves almost 275 students in day and evening programs, with an average of 80 students graduating each year.

In August 2017, the Process Operations Technology Program received endorsement status from the North America Process Technology Alliance, giving the program its first national-level endorsement.

“We were excited when CGIA chose the Process Operations Program for endorsement.  We are the first Process program to be selected for endorsement and consider it an honor to set this standard,” Broome said. “We set the bar very high for those to come after us.  This is an important recognition because of the opportunities that is opens for our students.”

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Moss Point Advances in $2 Million National STEM Contest

DSC05913-2 Moss Point Advances in $2 Million National STEM Contest

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Out of nearly 3,000 applications for the 2017 – 2018 contest, the Moss Point Career & Technical Education (CTE) center, located in Moss Point, MS., was named one of the nation’s 255 state finalists in the Samsung Solve for Tomorrow Contest, a program that encourages students to solve real-world issues in their community using classroom skills in science, technology, engineering, and math (STEM).

Mr. Billy Carroll’s Robotics Engineering program and Mr. Ignacio Lopez-Morales’s Aquaculture program were chosen based on their joint proposal to use STEM skills to address water pollution. To tackle this project, their students will create a bio-filter to mitigate the pollutants flowing into the bayou.  

“As a director, my job is to find innovative programs and think towards the future of where these industries are heading and try to bring that here to the CTE center to prepare our kids for the jobs they’ll have tomorrow”, says Career & Technical Education Director, Dr. Durand Payton. 

As one of five state finalists in Mississippi, the Moss Point CTE will now have the opportunity to advance in the competition for classroom technology prizes.  Dr. Durand Payton, Mr. Carroll & Mr. Lopez are currently working on an Activity Plan outlining how their students will execute this project. The second phase of the project will entail the team working and finalizing plans on how the project will benefit the community and its local water sources. If they are named the Mississippi State Winner in December, the Moss Point Career & Technical Education center will receive a $25,000 Samsung technology package. The 10 national finalists will attend a pitch event for the winner announcement in early April. 

Dr. Payton states if they win they will re-invest the money back into the programs in hopes that it will bring attention and expose the CTE center and its students. “A lot of people are not aware of the CTE center and all we do”, says Dr. Payton. “Winning this would give us an opportunity to showcase the students at Moss Point’s CTE center and highlight all of what they can and will do”, says Dr. Payton. 

For more information about about this project, please contact Dr. Durand Payton at ddpayton@mpsdnow.org  

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Pascagoula-Gautier School District Receives $25,000 Grant for Bilingual Library

Screen-Shot-2017-11-20-at-3.35.33-PM Pascagoula-Gautier School District Receives $25,000 Grant for Bilingual Library

Families in Jackson County now have the opportunity to become more bi-literate at the Aaron Jones Family Interactive Center.

The Pascagoula-Gautier School District received a $25,000 State Farm Neighborhood grant to develop a bilingual resource library in an effort to help children and parents in the community. According to State Farm, the program “helps worthwhile nonprofit organizations across the U.S., offering $25,000 grants for neighborhood projects involved in education, safety and community development.”

Kelli McCorkle, the director of the early beginnings program, said that while the Aaron Jones Family Interactive Center also holds the Excel by 5 library, this is an opportunity for families to receive more support with bilingual needs.

“One of our main goals is bi-literacy,” McCorkle said. “We want parents to get involved with reading and use this support before their children enter school.”

McCorkle said that her time as a past school administrator made her aware of the challenges to those students who don’t speak English. She explained that a long-term goal of the library is to support graduation down the road.

“The resource library will help children prepare for kindergarten,” McCorkle said. “When children are more prepared starting at the pre-kindergarten level, you see increased graduation rates, an increase of those who own homes, and more.”

While many of the materials available at the library are in Spanish, McCorkle said there is a variety of materials in many languages, such as Vietnamese or American Sign Language. In addition, there are many different types of activities, including a listening center that incorporates new technologies.

The hours for the library vary. On Monday and Friday from 9 to 11 a.m. and 1 to 3 p.m., the library is open where students and parents can interact or checkout books, with hours on Tuesdays and Thursdays from 1 p.m. until 3 p.m. While only those in Pascagoula and Gautier will be able to checkout materials, anyone is welcome to come into the center and interact.

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Dr. Durand Payton Named CTE Director of the Year

asdf2-200x300 Dr. Durand Payton Named CTE Director of the YearOn October 29-31, the Mississippi Association of School Administrators held its annual meeting & fall leadership conference in Jackson, MS.  The theme of the conference was “The Changing Seasons of Leadership ~ To Everything There is a Season”.  During the conference, Dr. Durand Payton was named the 2017 MASCTA Director of the Year.  Dr. Payton is the director of the Moss Point Career & Technical Education center in Moss Point, MS.  The MASCTA award pays tribute to the talent and vision of the men and women who lead our state’s public schools. This award is sponsored by the Scantron Corporation and the Mississippi Association of School Administrators.  The Mississippi Association of School Administrators (MASA) is the oldest educational organization in Mississippi serving administrators across Mississippi.  MASA is also the state affiliate for the American Association of School Administrators (AASA).  Founded in 1865, the American Association of School Administrators (AASA) is one of the longest-standing professional education leadership organizations in the nation.  

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Hometown Heroes Super Saturday Features Excel by 5 Health Fair

            The Pascagoula-Gautier Hometown Heroes Super Saturday will be held 10 a.m. to 1 p.m., Saturday, Nov. 11, 2017, at the Aaron Jones Interactive Center. Featured exhibits will be provided by the City of Gautier, Gautier Police Department, Pascagoula Police Department, Pascagoula Fire Department, Jackson County Sheriff’s Department, Acadian Ambulance, Jackson-George Regional Library System and Boys and Girls Club.

          In conjunction with the Super Saturday, Excel by 5 of Pascagoula will hold its annual Health Fair with free health and safety screenings. Exhibits include Wal-Mart Vision, South Mississippi Smiles, Singing River Women’s and Children’s Department, the PGSD diagnostics department, Singing River Hands Only CPR, American Red Cross, Let’s Go Gulf Coast, Jackson County Health Department, Encore Rehabilitation, Prevention and Safety Services and Healthplex.

          Children will also be able to explore the Wetlands Room, Pirate Ship Room, Toddler Town, Block Room, Main Street Pascagoula, STEM Lab, flight simulator rooms, black light room, Apple Computer Lab, golf course and playground.

          Super Saturdays are open free to the public. All children must be accompanied by an adult. The Family Interactive Center is located at 1415 Skip St., across from Pascagoula High School. For more information, call 228-938-6418.

 

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