Lincoln Laboratory Community Outreach

This project is an initiative to raise community awareness by providing education in the fields of science and engineering. The program capitalises on the strength of the laboratorys scientific community and strives to integrate services with advanced educations and research. Every community outreach program is an important component of social advancement and economic development. From its inception, the outreach initiative was inspired by the employees desire to help the needy people and motivate the interested students in participation of science and engineering expos. The project presents many opportunities for participation at the community level.

 

The education outreach of the laboratory offers an opportunity to provide in-class presentations to regional schools and mentorship based internship programs for colleges and graduates, preparing for science and technology careers. The laboratory was established to increase opportunities to the minorities and women pursuing bachelors degrees in engineering and science. The award takes different forms, depending on the choice ones school, although it includes tuition assistance, support for presentation of technical papers and funding of independent research projects.

Continued professional growth is another commitment of the staff members pursuing to academic excellence. The program enables technical staff members to attend masters and doctorate courses at local colleges, thus achieving academic goals while pursuing career advancement. Scholars in the program are monitored by Lincoln scholars committee to ensure maximum technical development that can benefit both the lab and the scholar. The Laboratorys commitment to give back to the community has been facilitated by sponsorship deals from fund raising and community service events in support of unity. The management of Lincoln Laboratory and community project welcomes all suggestions on the best ways to improve the outreach program activities in order to serve the community better.

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Observations during the Experience

During this experiment, it was observed that the outreach program, initiated by Lincoln laboratory, organised several opportunities to donate their time and products through their different events. For instance, the organisation was able to provide canned-food donations to the food free organisations which collect products from local farmers, markets and grocery and deliver them to the human service agencies for distribution to the homeless. In addition, the engineering department had an initiative of donating their experimental products such as amateur toys to the needy children. This acted as a challenge and a learning opportunity to the would-be engineers in the children homes.

The clothing drive within the program that is run by religious movements has been a motivation in itself, as it has reduced the level of alcoholism. The program was meant to reduce the level of alcohol and drug abuse in the society and by the foregoing, it has managed to produce positive results. The products of this clothing program has been used to improve the way of life to the homeless men and women in the society and also supporting disaster relief locally and nationally in times of crisis. The Lincoln laboratory has also managed to provide seedlings to tree planting campaigns through the agriculture sector. The organisation has also facilitated free education to the members of the community regarding the issues of climate change and global warming.

Effects of the Experience

The lesson I learned through this experiment is that every community can achieve their goals, regardless of their current situation. Much has been said about the existing problems of the society, and they can only be solved through the societys full involvement. In this experiment, Lincoln Laboratory acted as a facilitator but the actual participation of the society members was final. Through my personal analysis I realised that the project piloted innovative ways of dealing with problems though women and youth empowerment, as it also identified models of scaling up their activities. The peer-to-peer reviewed exchanges between different departments provided a platform for learning from one another and providing an opportunity for continuous development and felt the need to introduce it at my workplace.

Needs of the Population

The common needs of the community were the reason why the project was established to help alleviate them. The project was initiated in order to encourage research activities and the study of science from members. The long term objective was to make a change to the community and the world at large through science and innovation.

Lincoln community has a great potential of advancement due to high level of average education in the community and the presence of the legal structures in support of youth and women empowerment. The program begun incorporating key ideas in the areas of concern through the planning process and the fortunate thing is that the community partners took the idea positively and joined in the initiative to improve the quality of life to all. The need for technological and scientific advancement of the community is a major way of motivating the members to actually get the needs required by the community with the help of the Lincoln laboratory project through proper identification of community needs, assets and resources; the program was able to also identify the methods of meeting them.

Drug abuse and alcoholism has been a major problem in the society, especially due to the level of idleness to the members. The organisation has managed to create programs that can ensure proper involvement of these people, especially to the youth. These types of engagement have reduced the cost of rehabilitation to addicts and transforming them to better persons in the community. Global warming and climate change is another problem that has been adequately addressed by the program through tree planting initiatives and educating the masses on the need for environmental conservation.

 
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Making a Difference with this Group

Knowing that this project makes a difference is an important achievement to every stakeholder involved in conducting education to promote a sustainable living. In order to improve the service delivery of this program, the stakeholders should be educated on the need to planning and delivering sustainable programs in understanding and getting evaluations started. Regardless of the focus of the project, its life cycle, or the outcome of the hierarchy, evaluation framework is necessary at every step of the based on the logics of the project. Evaluating the project within the hierarchy provides the learner with the evidence of the impact of the program at the range level and a practical mechanism in making decisions. Most importantly, timely evaluation contributes to a continuous improvement of the program management towards environmental, social and educational outcomes.

In order to increase the level of integration between the local community and other interested groups, the level of networking should be increased to all stakeholders. Computers and information technology are continuously being integrated into everyday functions of organizations and society. Most opportunities and problem solving mechanisms are associated with integration. Due to unequal access to information and knowledge in the society, the efforts of social and economic development are facing a major obstacle that is possible for the creation of information underclass. Therefore, intercommunity network have the highest potential to provide equal informational access and empower them in decision making to their ways of living. This is a challenge to the local authorities and the program managers to adopt a community based network that maximizes the potentials, while at the same time minimizing the negatives.

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Jan 14, 2021 in Socioligy
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