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Contact Information: Tanya Klein Public Relations 973-596-3433

NJIT To Meet with Senegalese Educators at Newark’s West Side High

WHAT: An engineer, a student and a technician from New Jersey Institute of Technology (NJIT) who helped middle and high school students from Newark compete in New Jersey FIRST (For Inspiration and Recognition of Science and Technology) competitions will discuss their experience with a delegation of Senegalese educators.

WHERE: West Side High School, Newark

WHEN: Monday, Sept. 19, at 2 p.m.

WHO: Durgesh Sethi, a junior at NJIT majoring in mechanical engineering, mentored students at the Oliver Street School, Newark, which won a New Jersey First middle-school competition, held in January at NJIT. The school, along with Sethi, was invited to attend a First Lego exposition held this August in Japan. Sethi, of Newark, is a graduate of Technology High School, Newark, where he participated in FIRST. NJIT President Robert A. Altenkirch, engineer Levelle Burr-Alexander, project manager for instruction at NJIT’s Center for Pre-College Programs, and Frank Johansson, a technician at NJIT, will attend the event.

WHY: NJIT helped the Newark students master the concepts of design, engineering and computer programming involved in robotics. “Last year, with help from NJIT, Technology High won the highest award in the robotics contest,” said Bahig Michaels, district robotic coordinator for the Newark School District. “With help from NJIT students such as Sethi,” he added, “we not only can compete with the affluent suburban schools, but we can win.”

BACKGROUND: NJIT has provided shop, engineering facilities and labs as well as technical support for the Newark teams. NJIT students have been enthusiastic mentors; many, like Sethi, having participated themselves in FIRST during high school. NJIT has given scholarships to members of the Newark teams, and through its Center for Pre-College Programs, has taught Newark high school teachers about engineering, design and computer programming. “NJIT’s level of support of the Newark schools is unprecedented,” said Randy Schaeffer, FIRST regional director for New York City and New Jersey. “No other college in the nation has helped a school district the way NJIT is helping Newark.” 

One of the nation's leading public technological universities, New Jersey Institute of Technology (NJIT) is a top-tier research university that prepares students to become leaders in the technology-dependent economy of the 21st century. NJIT's multidisciplinary curriculum and computing-intensive approach to education provide technological proficiency, business acumen and leadership skills. With an enrollment of more than 10,000 graduate and undergraduate students, NJIT offers small-campus intimacy with the resources of a major public research university. NJIT is a global leader in such fields as solar research, nanotechnology, resilient design, tissue engineering, and cyber-security, in addition to others. NJIT ranks 5th among U.S. polytechnic universities in research expenditures, topping $110 million, and is among the top 1 percent of public colleges and universities in return on educational investment, according to PayScale.com.