NEW DELHI: Honeywell announced that 17 Indian students were among 292 students from 41 countries to attend a once-in-a-lifetime learning experience at the Honeywell Leadership Challenge Academy (HLCA).
This two-week long unique leadership program at the U.S. Space and Rocket Center (USSRC) in Huntsville, Alabama, encourages students to pursue science, technology, engineering and math (STEM) careers through real-world, hands-on challenges in coding, computer sciences, and astronautics.
Sakshi Bhavsar, a student-participant from Pune said, “At the academy, I sat in the cockpit of a flight simulator, learned how to fly a jumbo jet, and launched a model rocket – is there anything cooler than this? I felt as if I was part of a Mars exploration mission!”
At the academy, students between 16 to 18 years participated in numerous team-building challenges like assembling, coding and testing rockets, and participating in simulated astronaut training, shuttle missions, and a moonwalk. Students also met scientists, engineers, and former astronauts who reinforced core leadership competencies and shared their first-hand professional experiences.
“Engaging students in science and engineering is now as fundamentally important as learning to read and write,” said Dr. Deborah Barnhart, CEO and executive director, USSRC. “By investing in these young students, Honeywell is helping to prepare them to become the global STEM-literate citizens who will change our world.”
Rohith Tirumalasetti, a Hyderabad participant, who was among the eight students selected globally as ambassadors and mentors to the U.S. Space Camp, said, “Not many students get an opportunity to return to the Space Camp as a student-mentor. I am privileged to have relived my dream of being in a space mission again! Last years’ experience was phenomenal, and this year I was thrilled to share tips with my friends, helping them achieve their goals.”
“Fortune favors the bold! This camp has instilled leadership abilities in me that will help me in the future. It also taught me how to be independent in life,” said Srikar Desu from Bengaluru.
Echoing a similar sentiment, Tanmay Taneja from Gurugram, said, “Meeting students from around the world who share the same passion for rockets, jets, space shuttles, and the moonwalk was extremely exciting. What’s really great is the program combines science and engineering with fun and friendship for life.”
This year, Honeywell chose seven students from Bangalore, eight students from Pune, and one each from the Delhi/NCR and Hyderabad.
“As a world leader in software and industrial technology, Honeywell sees the need to increase educational opportunities for students by blending technical knowledge with team-building, communication and leadership skills. The Honeywell Leadership Challenge Academy aims to do that,” said Mike Bennett, President, Honeywell Hometown Solutions. “In partnership with the USSRC, we’re pleased to offer this program to our future leaders.”
Since 2010, Honeywell Hometown Solutions, the company’s corporate citizenship initiative, has awarded 2,709 scholarships to children of Honeywell employees. Students are selected through a rigorous application and review process based on academic achievement and community involvement. Honeywell and its employees help fund the scholarships, which cover the cost of tuition, meals, accommodations and program materials.