Sailors assigned to Submarine Group 7 (SUBGRU 7) hosted students from Yokosuka Middle School’s science, technology, engineering, and mathematics (STEM) program, April 3.
The STEM program has educated more than 30,000 students since 2002, and has helped to bolster interest and potential career paths in the various fields that make up the program’s acronym.
An opportunity for students to enter a command with high importance and high security like SUBGRU 7 is rare, and the potential impact for the future generation can be huge.
“STEM offers our students an opportunity to see science and technology in the ‘real world,'” said Dale Duncan, STEM coordinator for Yokosuka Middle School. “This is important because it shows how their school curriculum is preparing them for their future careers, while maybe planting a few ideas about careers they never considered.”
This event supports the Department of the Navy’s STEM roadmap built around five priorities: inspire the next generation of scientists and engineers; engage students and build their STEM confidence and skills through hands-on learning activities that incorporate Naval-related content; educate students to be well prepared for employment in STEM careers that support the Navy and Marine Corps; employ, retain and develop Naval Stem professionals; and collaborate on STEM efforts across the Department of the Navy, the federal government and best practice organizations.
“We are trying to get the kids out of their comfort zone and show them how science, technology, engineering and math apply in real life situations,” said Laura Batista, a Spanish teacher at Yokosuka Middle School. “I’m sure the kids can relate to this, and they will bring a lot back to the classroom.”
During their time at SUBGRU 7 the students toured three different spaces in the building learning about communications, nuclear reactors, life on a sub, and how a torpedo works.
“I definitely think the program has value,” said Daniel Limmer, a social studies teacher at Yokosuka Middle School. “The kids show a lot of interest in the activities that happen on base that they don’t normally get to see. I think they have gained an interest in furthering their academics that may lead them to one of these positions or jobs in the future.”
The submarines attached to SUBGRU 7 safely and securely conduct persistent undersea warfare and anti-submarine warfare operations in the 5th and 7th Fleet Areas of Responsibility covering nearly half of the Earth’s surface.
Coordinating a diverse fleet of submarines, surface ships and aircraft, CTF-74 and CTF-54 provide theater anti-submarine warfare support from the Red Sea to the International Date Line.
Press Release, April 17, 2014; Image: SUBGRU 7