Ishara “ish” Deniyage, Engineering Associate at McCormick Stevenson and Mechanical Engineering student at the University of South Florida (USF) has been actively working with local students for several years. McCormick Stevenson recently learned about two of his initiatives and wanted to share the details among our engineering community.
This annual event displays projects that encourage students in K thru 12th grade to engage in engineering and other STEM fields. In keeping with this year’s theme, “Sea the Future”, Ish created a project called the Pollution Collector. It was designed to be a boat attachment for everyday people to help clean the ocean while spending the day out on the water. Since pollution is a growing concern, displaying the issue and allowing the younger generations to see how they could help through the power of engineering, made for a great experience.
During the Expo, Ish presented the Pollution Collector concept to over 10,000 children. This was his third consecutive year participating in the Expo, the first year as a volunteer and the last two years as an Expo Planning Committee Board Member.
Ish had the opportunity to represent USF and engineering during the Great American Teach-In at Pizzo Elementary School. He talked to first graders about engineering and gave insights into his academic path and also highlighted the many possibilities engineering can offer. His presentation included a hands-on paper airplane activity that demonstrated engineering in action. Ish gave the students different airplane designs and let them experiment for themselves.
When asked about these experiences, Ish remarked: “Educating younger generations is a very important responsibility that I enjoy fulfilling. I hope to help build a better future and inspire each student to pursue higher education and accomplish their goals as future professionals.” McCormick Stevenson is proud to have Ish on the team. We support and encourage everyone to “give back” to our profession through volunteerism and communicating the excitement of engineering.