Huntington Ingalls awards more than $99,000 in STEM grants to schools on the Coast

Huntington Ingalls Industries is helping the next generation of scientists and engineers by assisting schools in Mississippi and Alabama with funding for science, technology, engineering, and math initiatives.

Science, technology, engineering, and math are coming alive in the classroom here on the Coast with a little help from Huntington Ingalls Industries.

Ingalls has awarded $99,890 in grants to 26 schools and educational organizations from Bay St. Louis to Jackson to Mobile, two of which are D’Iberville and St. Martin high schools.

D’Iberville High School Chemistry and Physics teacher Katherine Webb said, “Any kind of resources we can get is great for us– they’re great assets for us. And being able to have more ways to be innovative with our kids. It’s a great opportunity for the kids to have a better education.”

D’Iberville High School received a $2,251 grant that will be used toward forensic science kits where students will solve a murder. “I wanted them to branch out and see the other ideas that they could have if they like chemistry of jobs that are available to them.”

St. Martin middle and high schools were given grants which will be used to acquire a plasma CNC table and other equipment to help with the NASA Human Exploration Rover Challenge.

St. Martin High Physics and Engineering Teacher Brandon Sema said, “Their ability to fabricate what they can imagine in their heads is the issue. With the plasma CNC, they can design something on the computer and let the plasma cutting CNC machine cut it out of metal exactly how they designed it.”

Over the past 13 years, Ingalls has awarded local STEM-related educational projects more than $1.2 million.

The money being given to STEM programs not only helps those students already interested in the subjects, it attracts new students as well.

“It might be something just gets a student in the door so that they see that, maybe never really thought that they had interest or even thought about engineering. So that gets them through the classroom doors and then potentially gets them a full career where they can be successful in something they had no clue about originally.”

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