SHANGHAI, China – On May 15, UTRC China General Manager Murilo Bonilha, and Thomas Simonet, Vice President, Human Resources, BIS Asia, led the award and kick-off ceremony for UTC's first event tied to its 2015 STEM education partnership with the China Friendship Foundation for Peace and Development (CFFPD).
The afternoon celebration, hosted at the China Welfare Institute Children's Palace in Shanghai, attracted more than 150 middle school students, science educators and local community/non-government organization representatives.
It served as the official launch of UTC's China STEM Education 2015, a multi-faceted program designed to develop and deploy science, technology, engineering and mathematics (STEM) education curriculum programs for primary and middle schools in Hong'an, Beijing, Shanghai and Hangzhou in conjunction with the CFFPD.
This program was announced during UTC President and Chief Executive Officer Greg Hayes' recent eight-day visit to China where he met with top Chinese officials, customers, business partners and employees to emphasize the country’s growing strategic importance to UTC and the world at large.
From May through November of this year, the program will create localized STEM education curriculums for Chinese classrooms, encourage the exchange of STEM skills between students and teachers in the United States and China, and offer a STEM summer camp as well as student-parent lectures and dialogues.
At the May 15 event, Bonilha presented STEM education award certificates to eight science volunteers and educational experts to recognize their contributions in inspiring children's interest in science. He also presided over the interactive Green Shoots STEM games by hosting a competition challenging students to pierce an apple with a straw. The purpose of the game was to demonstrate basic scientific principles and help participants gain a better understanding of the importance of hands-on experiments.
The international Green Shoots program is a BIS community outreach initiative designed to promote sustainability among early education students. Since its start in 2011, the program has provided Green Shoots scholarships, interactive classes and school improvement services to primary schools in China, India and Southeast Asia.
"We are proud to be part of the UTC China team supporting this great STEM initiative with the CFFPD," Bonilha said. "It serves to underscore UTC's ongoing commitment to the well-being and growth of Chinese communities and to promote science and engineering education in China."