Murray Hill Has Science and Swag

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Murray Hill Has Science and Swag

That’s right. We certainly do have swag according to one of the teens that joined the Take our Daughters and Sons to Work Day (TODSWD) event in Murray Hill.
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Monday, May 12, 2014 - 9:25am

CAMPAIGN: Education and Digital Inclusion

CONTENT: Article

As I sat through the media session given to the children that day, they were asked to pick a subject for a story and explain the topic. Then they were asked to create a title for that story. A young lady in the session chose “Take Your Child to Work Day in Murray Hill” as her topic. Interestingly enough her heading “Murray Hill has Swag” captured our attention in the room and became the basis for the title of this story. This was a clear example of lessons learned and there were many more taking place that day in Murray.

For the children, it was a day to learn about what their parents do and, for the adults, it was an opportunity to see things through the eyes of the young and to recognize that we have a lot to be proud of in terms of history, innovation and talent.

About the Day

On April 24, 2014, over 400 children converged upon Murray Hill for a fun filled day of learning and excitement in place of a “typical” day at school. With 21 programs in all, designed to open up our children’s eyes to the world of telecommunications, science, sustainability and more, the schedule was completely packed and the children were kept very busy throughout the day. Children could take advantage of as many programs as they wanted or they could just trail their parent to learn what a normal work day is like. From the looks of things, there were many more children participating then trailing. That is thanks to the employee volunteers who took the time out to design and schedule the programs, coordinate the activities, register the children and escort them to their activities…and the day went flawlessly!

Taking advantage of the crowds that gathered in the building that day, this also became a caring opportunity where employees were asked to bring in cat supplies to donate to The Summit Animal League and Summit Animal Rescue. We were able to collect $300 and six boxes of cat food and supplies to distribute to the two organizations.

The Programs

The programs were designed to be informative but also very interactive. Children built cell towers out of newspapers, performed laboratory experiments (e.g., concept of energy loss and cryogenics), experienced soundlessness in an anechoic chamber and toured our firehouse where they were able to demo some of the firefighting equipment. Using a green screen they also watched parts of their bodies disappear or see themselves appear in different parts of the world. Also, available were robotics programs in which one was run by highschool Cadets in the Civil Air Patrol. They were extremely impressive and articulate young men and definitely role models for the other children.

Click here to view the program descriptions.

A Special Highlight

At the end of the day, came one of the biggest highlights. In our ranks is a hidden talent, that even the employees were surprised and amazed about. His name is Pat Povilaitis and he is known professionally as “The Human Vise”. An Alcatel-Lucent Project Component Engineer by day and an “Old Time Strongman” by night, he is considered one of the best in the world and holds a number of world records in steel bending, horseshoe bending, stone lifting, and more. He has even been featured on The History Channel, on a show called “Stan Lee’s Superhumans”. Pat demonstrated his super human feats for the audience and we winced and yelped as we watched him bend metal on his neck, rip apart a telephone book and break a bat over his head. Although watching these feats were extremely entertaining, Pat had a much deeper message for the audience. It was all about challenging yourself to go above and beyond and to use your mind to its fullest extent.

“Your mind and your belief in yourself are the most powerful tools in the world. I believe I am living proof of that statement. Pick your own goal, apply all of your efforts and positive energy and you will achieve greatness”…..Pat Povilaitis.

As I watched how the children partcipated wholeheartedly in all the events and with their eyes wide open, I’m sure that the seeds planted that day will turn out some of our future scientists, engineers, and marketing and communication managers. When asked what they liked the best that day, the children found it hard to pinpoint just one program and couldn’t wait to see what was in store for the rest of the day!

Special Thanks

Thank you to all the Alcatel-Lucent employees that made this day a success for the future talent of the world. There were over 80 volunteers (including presenters, chaperones and registration volunteers) who contributed to the day’s event; however, I would like to especially thank the leaders of this event who have done this for many years and always go above and beyond. They are the co-chairs for the day: Terri Tauber and Ingrid Orav.

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Keywords: Education | Alcatel-Lucent | Alcatel-Lucent Foundation | Education | Employee Engagement | Philanthropy | STEM | Volunteerism & Community Engagement | volunteerism

CAMPAIGN: Education and Digital Inclusion

CONTENT: Article