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Plant a seed, grow a future; Corps employees take their children to work

Published April 29, 2014
Catherine Guilhur and Willow Eichler watch as Corps intern AJ Moore tests the spaghetti bridge constructed by Guilhur and Eichler as one of the design challenges during the 21st Annual Take Our Daughters And Sons To Work® program held at the district offices in Los Angeles April 24. Nearly two dozen children of U.S. Army Corps of Engineers Los Angeles District employees participated in the event.

Catherine Guilhur and Willow Eichler watch as Corps intern AJ Moore tests the spaghetti bridge constructed by Guilhur and Eichler as one of the design challenges during the 21st Annual Take Our Daughters And Sons To Work® program held at the district offices in Los Angeles April 24. Nearly two dozen children of U.S. Army Corps of Engineers Los Angeles District employees participated in the event.

Walter and Dominique Washington construct a spaghetti bridge during the 21st Annual Take Our Daughters And Sons To Work® program held at the district offices in Los Angeles April 24. Nearly two dozen children of U.S. Army Corps of Engineers Los Angeles District employees participated in the event.

Walter and Dominique Washington construct a spaghetti bridge during the 21st Annual Take Our Daughters And Sons To Work® program held at the district offices in Los Angeles April 24. Nearly two dozen children of U.S. Army Corps of Engineers Los Angeles District employees participated in the event.

Brian Smith, Alexander Burrola, Jude McIntosh and Gage McIntosh construct a spaghetti bridge under the watchful eye of Corps intern AJ Moore during the 21st Annual Take Our Daughters And Sons To Work® program held at the district offices in Los Angeles April 24. Nearly two dozen children of U.S. Army Corps of Engineers Los Angeles District employees participated in the event.

Brian Smith, Alexander Burrola, Jude McIntosh and Gage McIntosh construct a spaghetti bridge under the watchful eye of Corps intern AJ Moore during the 21st Annual Take Our Daughters And Sons To Work® program held at the district offices in Los Angeles April 24. Nearly two dozen children of U.S. Army Corps of Engineers Los Angeles District employees participated in the event.

William MacNeil shows off the balloon-powered car he built during the 21st Annual Take Our Daughters And Sons To Work® program held at the district offices in Los Angeles April 24. Nearly two dozen children of U.S. Army Corps of Engineers Los Angeles District employees participated in the event.

William MacNeil shows off the balloon-powered car he built during the 21st Annual Take Our Daughters And Sons To Work® program held at the district offices in Los Angeles April 24. Nearly two dozen children of U.S. Army Corps of Engineers Los Angeles District employees participated in the event.

Nearly two dozen children of U.S. Army Corps of Engineers Los Angeles District employees participated in the 21st Annual Take Our Daughters And Sons To Work® program held at the district offices in Los Angeles April 24.

Nearly two dozen children of U.S. Army Corps of Engineers Los Angeles District employees participated in the 21st Annual Take Our Daughters And Sons To Work® program held at the district offices in Los Angeles April 24.

LOS ANGELES--Nearly two dozen children of Los Angeles District employees participated in the 21st Annual Take Our Daughters And Sons To Work® program held at the district offices here April 24. The children, ranging in ages from 5 to 18 years old, took part in a variety of activities designed to expand opportunities and transform lives.

Col. John Lim, acting deputy district commander, welcomed the children and outlined some of the events planned for them.

"We're going to let you try your hand at being engineers," Lim said. "We'll have some structural integrity competition by letting you build bridges and geodesic domes; it should be a lot of fun!"

After a video overview of the District and volunteer staff introductions, the children separated into two groups to begin their activities.

Kindergarten thru sixth-grade students were introduced to wetlands with a series of video presentations and an interactive model. They then constructed balloon-powered cars using paper, masking tape, balloons, straws, vinyl tubing, coffee stirrers and rubber bands.

The seventh- thru 12th-grade students first constructed bridges made from uncooked spaghetti noodles and masking tape to see which bridge could sustain the most weight in the form of washers and a toy car. They were then challenged with designing and building a geodesic dome out of straws, shelf-liner, zip ties and masking tape. Again, weights were used to test their designs.

The day-long visit included tours of the District's Reservoir Operations Center, where the students learned about dams and levees; the Emergency Operations Center, where they learned about preparedness and the District's emergency response missions; and a visit with District engineers to learn about design and construction as they viewed activity at an adjacent building.

"The students got to see, up close, the very important work their moms or dads do on a daily basis," said Lim. "They learned how critical their parents' work is to the well-being of nearly 1 in 10 Americans who live within our district boundaries."

According to the Take Our Daughters And Sons To Work® website, the program is designed to show children the value of their education and help them discover the power and possibilities associated with a balanced work and family life. It also provides an opportunity to share how they envision the future and begin steps toward their end goals in a hands-on and interactive environment. Last year, more than 37 million people participated in the event in the U.S. alone.