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Posted 4/24/2015

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By Public Affairs
North Atlantic Division

Children of all ages joined their parents in the U.S. Government workplace on April 23 during "Bring Your Child to Work Day," an annual event in celebration of the national "Take Our Daughters and Sons to Work Day." Held at the North Atlantic Division Headquarters, the event provided a unique opportunity for Division representatives to educate children and transform their lives through interactive exhibits and hands on experiences.

The welcoming portion of the program was held in the west wing of building 301 where children were treated to a comprehensive presentation, special handouts, coloring books, and snacks.

North Atlantic Division staff created an interactive environment to help children learn what their parents accomplish behind their desks and in the field.

Each adult participant discussed the purpose of their particular office and provided a brief description of their job responsibilities and made special efforts highlighting how they each play a special role in contributing to the mission with the support they provide.

Danny Rodriguez, Civil Engineer orchestrated the event and was lead facilitator. Rodriguez highlighted the role of a civil engineer and how each parent plays a special role in contributing to the success of the Corps.

The program continues to be a popular event with parents at NAD, giving them the added bonus of showing their children the value of an education and careers in the Science, Technology, Engineering and Mathematics (STEM) field.

"The event was another example of instilling interest about what the Corps accomplishes through interactive experiments that children can understand."

Rodriguez spoke about the role of a civil engineer and used a video presentation featuring Lt. Gen. Thomas Bostick, Chief of Engineers who spoke about recent disasters, like hurricane Katrina and Superstore Sandy and the Corps' connection with the nation's iconic structures. A video of DC waterways, a tunnel boring machine and a major league baseball stadium with a retractable roof for storm protection was also aired.

Activities included safety discussions on the job site and donning safety equipment such as hard hats, safety goggles, and ear plugs.

A diorama of a dam was used as a prop to illustrate the parts of a dam. One young child thought to its logical conclusion about what could happen if a dam would actually collapse.

An activity using bond paper was used to discuss how materials can be manipulated to make them stronger for use in bridges or buildings.

Children didn’t merely shadow a parent, but instead were shown the important work the Corps performs and put into context they could understand by Division volunteers such as Patricia Donohue.

The "Bring Your Child to Work" Program continues to be a popular event with parents serving at NAD, giving them the added bonus of showing their children the value of an education and career in STEM fields.

Donohue spoke about Science, and engineers protecting endangered species.

"When you go to the shore, you must be aware of nesting areas of endangered species such as the Piping Plover,” said Donohue as she pointed to an image of a nesting bird and video of turtles hatching along the seashore.

The event ended with a tour along the Fort Hamilton bluff with a vista of the Upper Bay and close up view of the Verrazano-Narrows Bridge, a New York iconic structure and engineering marvel that spans the harbor entrance. Located at the mouth of upper New York Bay, the bridge is a major link in the interstate highway system, providing the shortest route between the middle Atlantic states and Long Island.

Donald Buda, of Logistics spoke about the bridge being the world's longest suspension span. "The ends of the bridge are at historic Fort Hamilton in Brooklyn and Fort Wadsworth in Staten Island, both of which guarded New York Harbor at the Narrows for over a century."