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Honeywell Leadership Challenge Academy Inspires Students to Pursue STEM Education Careers

Where can you find the top innovators, inventors and scientists of the future? Chances are many of them participated in the 2016 Honeywell Leadership Challenge Academy (HLCA) from February 20 to March 3.

Held at the U.S. Space & Rocket Center (USSRC) in Huntsville, Alabama, the weeklong event used interactive technology, science-oriented workshops and team exercises to teach participants leadership skills in science, technology, engineering and math (STEM).

The program helps develop students’ capabilities through hands-on challenges including designing, building and testing rockets. Students also participated in simulated astronaut training, shuttle missions and a moonwalk. They shared ideas with peers, coaches and mentors in STEM careers, including engineers, scientists and former astronauts.

During the students’ graduations Kerry Kennedy, Honeywell Hometown Solutions Director, encouraged students to capitalize on opportunities to experience new challenges – both at HLCA and in real life. “Our goal for this program is to provide participants with an amazing journey that not only teaches the importance of leadership and communications skills in STEM fields, but also encourages them to embrace opportunities that force them out of their comfort zone,” said Kennedy. “Doing this will not only build confidence, but will open many doors both professionally and personally.”

Walter Tarr, one of the students who participated in this year’s program said, “Exhilarating experience! My favorite and most memorable part of the week was being able to meet people from all over the globe and the U.S. This experience greatly influenced my feelings about math and science, because it gave me the opportunity to work with others that had the same interests in STEM fields. My dream is to be an Engineer.”

HLCA is sponsored by Honeywell Hometown Solutions, the company’s corporate citizenship initiative, and generous donations from Honeywell employees. The program is open to students between the ages of 16 and 18 who are the children of full-time Honeywell employees. This year more than 320 students from 36 countries and 30 U.S. states participated in HLCA. Over the past six years, Honeywell and the USSRC have awarded 1,770 scholarships to students after a rigorous application and review process based on academic achievement and community involvement.

For more information about the Honeywell Leadership Challenge Academy program, visit
Cecilia Tejeda
Honeywell Hometown Solutions