The Office of Naval Research recognizing the importance of education, specifically science and mathematics, embarked nearly a decade ago on their National Naval Responsibility for Naval Engineering program. Since then, academia, industry, and SNAME have increased their individual and collaborative efforts towards reaching out to students in an effort to share the excitement and opportunities available within the marine industry. Recently, in this vein, the Northrop Grumman Shipbuilding Apprentice School Chapter of the Hampton Roads SNAME chapter held a “Boat Design Competition” exposing over 240 high school students from 10 school districts (30 teams from 18 different high schools) to the excitement and knowledge needed to prepare design, construction and engineering packages using guidelines, lectures, and tutorial videos prepared by Apprentices and veteran Naval Architects. This was the first time high school students had the opportunity to compete in a head-to-head competition to design, construct, and operate the best boat relative to a number of prescribed requirements. The program also served to educate Apprentices in leadership, project management, research methods, brainstorming, naval architecture and systems engineering as well as establish a nurturing relationship between student chapter and veteran SNAME members which continues today.

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