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News from STP: Students Encouraged to Get Wild about Their Future at POWER SET Summit 2012

June 19, 2012

    Education is powerful, and getting an education can change a person's life.

    That was the theme for POWER SET Summit 2012, where 15 young POWER SET members from Bay City, Louise and Sweeny school districts learned about career opportunities for women in the nuclear industry - and were encouraged to "get wild about" their future.

    "We know you have a lot of choices when you are trying to decide what to do after you graduate," said Cathy Gann, Owner Relations Manager and Women in Nuclear executive sponsor. "We hope you consider the nuclear industry. But whatever you do, get wild about your future."

    POWER SET (Powerful Opportunities for Women Eager and Ready for Science, Engineering and Technology) was developed in 2008 to provide high school girls the tools, academic support and mentoring needed to pursue educational and career opportunities in science, technology, engineering and math. STP [The South Texas Project Electric Generating Station] WIN [Women in Nuclear] members, who helped launch the program at Palacios High School, volunteer to mentor students during the school year. POWER SET and a co-ed program, WIT (Workforce Industry Training), are managed by Texas A&M's Nuclear Power Institute.

    During POWER SET Summit 2012, WIN members told their personal stories about how they navigated their way to a career at STP. Speakers included Gann; Mary Anne Billings, Risk Management Engineer; Laura Brieden, Career Management and Leadership Development Supervisor; Brenda Verbeck, Career Management and Leadership Development Specialist; Irma Pena, Executive Assistant; Micole Berg, Mechanical and Civil Engineer; Vivian Wagnon, Staff Emergency Response Specialist, and DeDe Powell, Senior Equipment Clearance Order Specialist. Susie Brannon, Staff Scheduler, Kim Danielski, Radiation Protection, and Joy Patterson, Cyber Security, also shared their experiences at the event.

    The students were given tools to help them learn more about themselves and their interests, which could guide them to the type of career that would be a good fit for them. They also heard about different paths to college degrees, including pursuing a four-year degree while living on campus, pursuing a two-year degree, attending college or taking online classes part time while working full time.

    The speakers each emphasized that with education and determination, anyone can find a fulfilling and well-paid career.

    "One central message resonated throughout the day," said Clarence Fenner, Workforce Development Coordinator. "Education is important. It's liberating and it changes your life."

    Pictures: POWER SET students (above) interview each other in an ice breaker exercise at POWER SET Summit 2012.


    Fifteen POWER SET students from Bay City, Louise and Sweeny school districts attended the POWER SET Summit 2012, where they learned from WIN members that with determination and an education they could have fulfilling careers in the nuclear industry.



    POWER SET students receive tools to learn about themselves and their interests to help them determine what type of career might be a good fit for them.



      industry,high school,K12