EHS Students Make Powerful Connections
Exelon Professionals Mentor STEM Club Members
Four talented professionals with decades of experience in a varied range of science and engineering fields are helping Everett High School students bring their ideas to life.
The Mystic Mentors are from Exelon Generation, the energy giant that operates one of the largest power-producing facilities in New England on Route 99 in Everett. The collaboration is part of Exelon’s ongoing, extensive, and generous partnership with the Everett Public Schools. Fittingly, Exelon is taking a special interest in the district’s science, technology, engineering, and mathematics (STEM) programs.
Northeast and Mid Atlantic Regional Vice President Jim Carty, Technical Services Manager Mike Brown, Maintenance Supervisor Jorge Avila, and Senior Site Engineer Ying Ng are working with students in the EHS STEM Club on a variety of ambitious projects. They had their initial meeting in science teacher Anna Seiders’ classroom earlier this month. The students and mentors met as one group and in smaller teams in which one mentor was able to lend his expertise to one project.
Carty made a direct connection with the EHS students, telling them honestly, “We need people like you. Our facilities should reflect the demographics of the communities in which they operate,” he said, adding that STEM initiatives are helping create workforce diversity by providing additional learning opportunities to students.” Exelon, he said, devotes a lot of energy and resources to “workforce development,” adding “it’s people like you, with your hard work and enthusiasm for STEM subjects, that companies like ours will need to attract to be successful.” Carty added, “Power plants are great places to work!”
Carty and his colleagues talked about the personal, professional, and financial success they’ve enjoyed in their respective fields. They explained that a STEM career can take you around the globe, and that STEM fields are always changing and adapting to new developments and technologies.
“Have you thought about all of types of industries you could work?” Carty asked the students, “Power generation is one of hundreds of industries that demand the skills you are building, so please stick with it.”
Carty also talked about drones, which he said are becoming more prevalent all the time; Exelon uses them to inspect wind turbines and areas of facilities that are difficult or dangerous to get to in person.
“It was such a joy to have the Exelon Mentors come and work with our students,” said EHS science teacher and STEM Club Advisor Anna Seiders. “They brought industry insight that I am not able to give. The students have learned so much and are keeping in touch for continued mentorship.”
After the general discussion, the students met individually with their mentors: Avila is helping sophomores John Nguyen and Arthur Rosa on a motion sensor designed to connect to cameras and other mobile devices; Carty and senior Jason Cardinale discussed the student’s idea and design for a hybrid stair/wheelchair lift; Ng is assisting Ashley Erazo with the complete redesign of the “Rover,” the remote-control miniature race car that EHS students enter in regional and national competitions; Brown is working with freshmen Gustavo Aguiar and Rahnuma Aroshi on a phone stand that would effectively record the user and what the user is working on.