Shipyard employee honored by local school district for outreach to students

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BREMERTON, Wash. – A Puget Sound Naval Shipyard & Intermediate Maintenance Facility employee was honored for her Science, Technology, Engineering and Math outreach work at last night’s Kitsap and Olympic Educational Service District annual awards dinner.

During the event, Central Kitsap School District named PSNS & IMF K-12 STEM Outreach Coordinator Corinne Beach as their recipient of this year’s Community Leadership Award.

“I’m excited that our Navy STEM program is being recognized for our outreach with the local schools,” said Beach. “Although I’ll be the one accepting the awards, I did not earn this all on my own. We have a great team of volunteers from the Shipyard and Keyport who put in a lot of time to support these classroom activities, so this recognition is really because of the team’s hard work.”

Washington Association of School Administrators’ Community Leadership Awards are given to community members or groups in recognition of their outstanding contributions to education.

In the past year, PSNS & IMF and Naval Undersea Warfare Center Division Keyport employees partnered to support STEM activities that reached more than 1,100 students in more than 40 classes at schools in Central Kitsap School District.

“She takes her work seriously, and our students have seen her passion in action,” said Central Kitsap School District Superintendent David McVicker in his award nomination for Beach. “Corinne has been instrumental in helping STEM become part of the fabric of our schools and community. Her work directly contributes to connecting students with authentic STEM experiences, and hopefully future careers.”

Beach said she hopes to support even more schools in the future, adding that PSNS & IMF is able to reach so many students because of key partnerships with other local Navy organizations, such as NUWC Keyport, Naval Undersea Museum and Puget Sound Navy Museum. Through the support of these STEM partners, the PSNS & IMF STEM outreach program earned Navy-wide recognition last month with a 2016 Navy Community Service Program Award.

Silverdale Elementary School’s Parent Teacher Student Association also recently selected Beach as a recipient of a Golden Acorn award for volunteering her time at the school and supporting a few classes with various projects.

“Our volunteers don’t do this for recognition,” said Beach. “The most rewarding part for us is hearing that the schools are finding value in these activities and students are learning and being inspired.”

Navy STEM volunteers have supported various activities with Kitsap-area schools, including student mentoring, judging local school science fairs, supporting For Inspiration and Recognition of Science and Technology (FIRST) programs, sponsoring SeaPerch underwater remotely operated vehicle programs, providing STEM activity training for teachers, and supporting STEM festivals with hands on exhibits for students and families. Through these joint outreach activities, Navy mentors were able
to work with more than 4,200 students last year.

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