Commitment to STEM Education at MYNAH
By Martin Berutti on 05.12.16
Mimic Simulation

MYNAH Technologies is an active supporter of STEM Education programs in the St. Louis area. As a growing technology company, we feel it is important to invest time and money in the next generation of engineers and computer scientists. We do this with outreach programs to local high school STEM programs, sponsoring FIRST Robotics teams, and supporting our local engineering schools. Our MYNAH associates love the interaction with the future engineering and computer scientist students and, hopefully, the students walk away with a vision of what a career with a technology company is like.

Feed Them Pizza Before They Face The Machine

Most high school students don't know much about what a career in engineering is really all about. We thought it would be very useful (and maybe fun) to introduce them to our world at MYNAH ... the world of process dynamics and modeling. So, a couple of our young leaders, who still remembered high school, set up an introduction party for high school STEM classes. We had the classes come to MYNAH, we give them a quick overview of process dynamics and controls and then have them try their hand at a game we developed (runs in Mimic) called Man vs. Machine. We feed them pizza afterwards and should probably change the order and feed them pizza before they face the machine, but, we needed the pizza to keep them engaged. The kids have a great time, get out of class for a morning, and learn real life control and process dynamics problems. We actually built the game on the same platform that we used for Greg McMillan's mentorship program for our young professionals at MYNAH. This year we held these for the STEM classes at Westminster Christian Academy and De Smet Jesuit High School.

Westminister STEM Class Visits MYNAH with Westminster STEM Teachers Maggie Moore and Erin Albright

Sponsoring the Robots

FIRST Robotics is a global competition of secondary schools where high school age students have to design and build robots and then compete against other schools in competitions on a local, regional, and national level. The students have to learn hardware and software development skills, raise their own funds, and market and document their achievements. It's like starting a a small technology company, building a product, and then competing in the marketplace. MYNAH had the privilege of sponsoring two FIRST Robotics teams at St. Louis high schools this year, Westminster Christian Academy Cyborg Cats and the Eureka High School Bosons. This year, both of our teams qualified for the worlds tournament at America's Center in St. Louis, Missouri!

Eureka High School Bosons First Robotics Team at 2016 World Competition, America's Center, St. Louis

Supporting Engineering Students

The final part of our STEM program is focused upon the engineering students at our local universities. We are fortunate that we have three excellent engineering schools close to MYNAH.

To encourage academic achievement and raise our visibility with these schools we sponsor AIChE student award, we call Virtus Dynamica (latin for dynamic excellence), which goes to the top Chemical Engineering senior at Missouri University of Science and Technology, University of Missouri, Columbia and, Washington University in St. Louis. I love to present the award myself if possible so I can meet these top talented students. In addition, we attend career fairs at all three universities, present at student AIChE meetings, and I am honored to be a guest lecturer at the Engineering Ethics class at Missouri S&T.

Our partnership with Missouri University of Science and Technology has been a significant asset to MYNAH. Missouri S&T had the largest chemical engineering department in our area, with a new Chemical Engineering building, Bertelsmeyer Hall, with a state of the art unit operations and process control lab. The department head Dr. Muthanna Al Dahhan also has a vision of classical chemical engineering education and preparation of undergraduate chemical engineers directly for careers in industry. We worked with them on a substantial donation of Mimic and some engineering services to set up a virtual unit operations and process control lab available to all Missouri S&T Chemical Engineering students. We hire their grads, support their classes, and recently have begun to collaborate with Missouri S&T professors on technical papers.

Levi Morris, University of Missouri, Dave Sextro, MYNAH Technologies, Shayan Sazdar, Missouri University of Science and Technology
Dave Sextro, VP Engineering at MYNAH Technologies, presents Virtus Dynamica to Levi Morris, University of Missouri, and Shayan Sazdar, Missouri University of Science and Technology

The STEM Education program at MYNAH is important and significant to our business for several reasons. First of all, it allows us visibility and access to the next generation of talented engineers and computer scientists. Second, it is rewarding and fulfilling to our professionals to give back to the organizations that got them started with their technical careers. And finally, meeting and working with these talented young men and women is a lot of fun!

More Information on MYNAH in STEM Education

I appreciate your comments, thoughts, or suggestions. Hope to see you soon.

Mart Berutti, 5/12/16