Harris field trip enlightens freshmen

In an opportunity to learn more about careers in STEM-related fields, the freshman class went on a field trip to Harris Corporation last week. Career Research teacher Heather da Silva organized this visit to Harris in order to help students discover any careers they may want to go into that involved STEM.

“I really enjoyed it,” da Silva said. “I wasn’t quite sure what to expect, but we walked in … there were a variety of different speakers that covered everything. I was actually surprised by how wide a variety of industries Harris was involved in.”

Harris works with satellites, using them for GPS systems and even the music on radios. They also help improve technologies for the Federal Aviation Authority, the Department of Defense and firefighters, among many others.

“I didn’t realize quite how far-reaching their products stretched,” da Silva said. “Google Maps was kind of the big shock to me, that Google Maps and Google Satellite, those are run on Harris technology.”

Freshman Petra Kohler recalled her time during the field trip as well.

“I thought it was a really good experience,” Kohler said. “We had multiple speakers talk about their jobs. I wished they did go into a little bit more depth of what they did because they really stayed up on top the surface.”  

Despite the lack of information provided during the presentations, there were other ways to learn more about Harris and what they do.

“I think the staff was really friendly and they were really thrilled to have a class coming in, especially since it was the first time that they had ever done something like this,” Kohler said. “And I know that me personally going around and asking them questions, they’re always very excited to answer, and they answered thoroughly and they made sure that you understand.”

However, before the field trip was underway, there was a setback.

“The worst part was them trying to figure out groups at the beginning, for like no reason,” Kohler said. “We didn’t even stay with our groups. We were with each other the entire time. And when we split halfway, the guy just randomly split us in half.”

Kohler also explained how the field trip affected her thoughts and knowledge concerning the company.

“Now I have a better understanding of what engineering is. Me in particular, I’m not actually interested in an engineering path,” she said. “I want to go toward a more medical career, but I think for people who are interested in engineering thought that this probably was a really good mind-opener for them.”

By Laura Shelton