On October 14th, 2015 the following article appeared in the Good Neighbor section of the MidWeek newspaper.
STEM classrooms around the island are a little bit cooler, thanks to Armed Forces Communications and Electronics Association Hawaii. The nonprofit, along with its educational foundation, donated $2,000 worth of fans to Oahu’s Central (Aiea-Moanalua-Radford) and Honolulu (Kaimuki-McKinley-Roosevelt) districts Sept. 4. (The group partnered with Hardware Hawaii, which offered a discounted rate for all fans purchased for the schools.)
“It’s really difficult if you’re in trigonometry class in the heat trying to figure out sines and cosines,” says AFCEA Hawaii member Cynthia Pacheco. For the past 20 years, AFCEA Hawaii has been a big advocate for all things science. It has supported Hawaii Science and Engineering Fair, Hawaii State Science Olympiad, multiple robotics programs and Cyber Patriot Cyber Defense competitions financially and as judges; and also helped sustain local robotics teams and provided scholarships for students in related fields.
According to Pacheco, who joined the local chapter two decades ago, donating fans was a no-brainer for the organization.
“It’s just showing our support for the local community, and for the schools and the students,” she continues. “It’s a continuation of what we’ve been doing all along.”
Pacheco’s work as a government contractor with JTSI Inc. fits perfectly with her AFCEA Hawaii membership, as it combines networking with a focus on educational enhancement.
“We do a lot of our projects and work with the schools,” she says. “It’s very rewarding.”
On the horizon for AFCEA Hawaii is the annual TechNet Asia Pacific conference, which celebrates its 30th year Nov. 17-19 at Hilton Hawaiian Village. The event is the largest in the Pacific Rim region and hones in on defense issues, which military and defense leaders will discuss in terms of future predictions and their relation to the area. Also participating will be 150 exhibitors showcasing products and solutions relating to defense in the Pacific. Monies from TNAP will go toward the foundation’s scholarships – which award an average of 30 “outstanding students in STEM fields of study” with thousands of dollars to further their schooling.
“We also have out STEM innovation showcase that highlights a lot of the local schools, and we bring in their robotics programs and their cyber patriot programs,” explains Pacheco.
More information can be found online at afcea-hawaii.org.
– Nicole Kato