AZUSA, Calif., July 19, 2010 -- Northrop Grumman Corporation's (NYSE:NOC) Azusa campus recently concluded its sixth annual WORTHY (Worthwhile to Help High School Youth) competition and mentoring program, which is designed to encourage and advance student interest in science, technology, engineering and mathematics (STEM) fields and the pursuit of technical degrees.
The highlight of the year-long program was the WORTHY team competition hosted recently by Northrop Grumman at its Azusa facility. This year, teams of students from Azusa High School and Gladstone High School, assisted by Northrop Grumman employee mentors, were given the task of designing a "Rube Goldberg machine" which is a deliberately over-engineered apparatus that performs a very simple task in a "complex" fashion, usually involving a chain reaction. The goal of the engineering experiment was to crush a soda can in 13 or more steps. Azusa Unified School District officials and teachers were on hand to judge the competition, which involved five teams consisting of a total of 20 students and 18 mentors. A team comprised from both high schools was declared the winner of the contest.
"Northrop Grumman's WORTHY Program provides hands-on engineering experience for high school students and affords the potential of a college education," said John Steven Coke, Sr., principal of Azusa High School. "Azusa High School is grateful for our long-time partnership with Northrop Grumman and its positive influence on our students."
Following the engineering competition, a year-end celebration dinner was held for the WORTHY students and their families, sponsored by Northrop Grumman. The students and their company mentors gave a presentation of their WORTHY projects and shared lessons learned during the program.
"The WORTHY competition provides the students an environment in which to learn the basic fundamentals of engineering and to apply those theories in a way that is fun and stimulates creative thinking in problem solving," said Stephen J. Toner, vice president of Northrop Grumman's Azusa Operations. "Ideally this program will be the catalyst to help them continue their studies in the STEM fields upon graduating from high school."
The WORTHY program offers a unique opportunity and a valuable resource to high school students excited about the STEM fields. Students are encouraged to pursue technical degrees, and─in addition to mentoring, networking and on-site guidance─receive hands-on engineering-related experiences which improve their access to post-secondary education. Students who meet the rigorous requirements of the program are eligible for college scholarship aid from the company. Since its inception at Northrop Grumman's Azusa facility in 2004, a total of 30 students have graduated from the WORTHY program.
Northrop Grumman Corporation is a leading global security company whose 120,000 employees provide innovative systems, products, and solutions in aerospace, electronics, information systems, shipbuilding and technical services to government and commercial customers worldwide. Please visit www.northropgrumman.com for more information.
CONTACT: Diane Pennington Northrop Grumman Electronic Systems (626) 812-1406 firstname.lastname@example.org