About 60 high school students are participating.
Some students will be learning how Bechtel Power works. About 60 high school students from Baltimore City and Baltimore County will be coming to Bechtel Power in Frederick on Friday morning for "job-shadowing," where they'll be observing first hand how engineers perform their tasks.
Victor Frisch, an assistant project manager with Bechtel, says the company joined recently with Junior Achievement to take part in this program. "It's an opportunity for students to come into various types of businesses, and find out a little bit about the businesses and have the businesses share their work environments and what it is that they do, and what kind of opportunities are there are for young people," he says.
Sixth grade students from St. John's Regional Catholic School in Frederick visited Bechtel on Wednesday, Sept. 19th as part of this "Job-Shadowing" program. Seventh graders from St. John's will taking the tour on Monday, Sept. 24th and eighth graders will be visiting on Wednesday, Sept. 26. A total of 200 students are taking part, says a company spokeswoman.
Frisch says programs like these are important because the world will need more engineers and other technicians in the future. The company says 0.8% of high school graduates pursue careers in science, technology, engineering and mathematics, and that has businesses like Bechtel concerned. "For a company like Bechtel, as a global engineering and construction firm, our challenges are always finding the resources that we need to build projects around the world. So a key component of what we do as a firm is reach out to students, and try to help to develop talent and interest in the engineering sciences," he Frisch.
For anyone whose interested in engineering as a career, Frisch says they should take the required classes in math and science, but not to limit themselves to just those courses. "A lot of the arts programs and the ability to work in a business environment are also very important these days in the engineering discipline," he says. "People have to be very, very adaptable," Frisch continues.
In addition to learning about careers in engineering, he says the students taking part in "Job-Shadowing" will learn about fossil fuel and nuclear power plants, transmission projects and alternative energy.