The Enduring Benefits of Mentoring the
Next Generation of STEM Leaders
the highlights throughout my 17-year career with Weir ESCO has been serving as
an ambassador for the company’s commitment to STEM education. The company has
an abiding interest in supporting community development and driving STEM is a
priority. Over the years, the organization has funded sponsorships, hosted
internships and supported many other STEM-oriented experiences for students and
the community at large.
engineer, I’ve had numerous opportunities to mentor engineering students and
young professionals, and I continue to do so. It’s an endeavor I’m proud and
excited to be part of, and it’s rewarding to see many of my mentees go on to do
summer, Weir ESCO is partnering for the first time with Saturday Academy, an education
nonprofit in Portland that provides access to hands-on STEM learning for
diverse students in grades two through 12. It’s a well-run program that
connects bright and curious younger students with community experts who teach
and mentor them in unique, in-depth learning experiences.
summer, many of the participating high school students are working on STEM
projects that directly benefit the community and help the students develop
critical skills in problem-solving, collaboration and business acumen. These
students are top-notch, and the application process is highly competitive.
Weir ESCO, we are mentoring a talented senior, Erim Hur, whose project this
summer is to mobilize our casting exhibit in a demonstration trailer that can
go into the Portland community. For years, we’ve taken the casting exhibit to
multiday community events like the OMSI Maker Faire to educate students and
adults about metal casting technology. Erim’s casting exhibit trailer design will
allow Weir ESCO to expand its outreach by making the exhibit more easily available
to a greater number of schools and organizations, sparking interest in STEM
fields among additional young people.
Weir ESCO and Saturday Academy’s new partnership to be both brilliant and
gratifying. All participants—the student, her mentor, the company and the
community—benefit in multiple and enduring ways. It’s powerful and motivating
that Weir ESCO is committed to developing the next generation of STEM leaders, with
Saturday Academy being the latest example.
Steven during a tour with Walla Walla University students in 2018.
Looking back at my career
so far, I’m grateful for every opportunity to develop people and better our
communities. And examining the many aspects of this project—whether it be
Erim’s exposure to collaborating with professional engineers or another
community member’s introduction to pouring molten metal—each learning
opportunity helps enrich the community we live in.
Note: Be sure to check back this fall for a feature
story on the outcome of Erim’s mobile casting booth project.