Renton High senior Manpreet Kaur recently returned from a week in Washington, D.C., where she joined 428 students from 31 countries and 31 states for The Honeywell Scholars @ Presidential Classroom.
The program is for students who are children of employees of Honeywell International, a technology and manufacturing company.
The trip is intended to teach students about the interconnection between science, technology and public policy.
The students visited the U.S. Supreme Court, the U.S. Department of State, Arlington National Cemetery, the National Academy of Sciences, Library of Congress, Walter Reed Institute of Research, Honeywell facilities at NASA’s Goddard Space Flight Center and the Honeywell Technology Experience on Capitol Hill.
The Honeywell Scholars also watched U.S. Congress in action and attended a presentation by Commander Eileen Collins, the first female commander of a space shuttle, at the Smithsonian National Air and Space Museum.
Kaur and the other Honeywell Scholars won scholarships to go on the trip. Kaur’s mother works for Honeywell.
Kaur plans to attend University of Washington and hopefully major in computer science. Kaur has a 3.8 GPA. She is in Key Club International, National Honor Society, Link Crew, Renton Shakespeare Company, Renton Sikh Temple and Sanatan Dharma Hindu Temple and Cultural Center.
How was the D.C. trip?
My trip was great! There is so much that I have learned from this program and so much I hope to accomplish because of encouragement and inspiration which I gained from Presidential Classroom. I can now perceive what significant roles we as young adults can play in politics and government service.
Overall, during my week with Presidential Classroom, I experienced so many amazing things and met so many great people. I was so impressed with the program and I enjoyed it so much that I intend to be a part of it in the future, perhaps as an instructor.
The Science, Technology and Public Policy Program examines the role of the government in issues related to scientific discoveries and technological advances. We received a firsthand look at the political responses to scientific advances, environmental quality, space exploration, disease control and changing technology.
I also got a chance to interact with a diverse group of students from all over the world through formal discussions and debates.
Everyday we had seminars and discussions that were organized for us with leaders and representatives from Congress, the administration, the media and other Washington insiders. Every seminar included a question-and-answer session with the speaker.
What was your favorite activity in D.C.?
My favorite activity in D.C. would be the trip to Capitol Hill to meet with Washington’s senators and representatives. During that time we also got to visit the Library of Congress and the Supreme Court. My most favorite activity would be the visit to the house floor of the House of Representatives — this privilege was only given to Presidential Classroom.
I hear the trip was to learn about science, technology and public policy in Washington, D.C. Are you particularly interested in any of these areas?
Yes, actually I am interested in these fields, especially science and technology – not so much of public policy. Now that I’ve returned from the trip I have a deep interest of exploring the government roles in the science and technology field.