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NUWC Division Newport’s Educational Outreach director wins Office of Naval Research Vice Adm. Samuel L. Gravely Award

By NUWC Division Newport Public Affairs | Nov. 8, 2018

NEWPORT, R.I. — Candida Desjardins, director of the Naval Undersea Warfare Center (NUWC) Division Newport Education Outreach Program, has won the Office of Naval Research (ONR) 2017 Vice Adm. Samuel L. Gravely Award. This is the first time a NUWC Newport employee has won this prestigious award.

This annual award is granted to individuals who have distinguished themselves by fostering Science, Technology, Engineering and Mathematics (STEM) education and diversity growth to sustain and expand future generations of the Naval Research Enterprise science and technology workforce.

As the director for NUWC Newport’s Educational Outreach Program for the past 11 years, Desjardins, a resident of Dartmouth, Massachusetts, has demonstrated her commitment to providing innovative and meaningful STEM education to local and regional students.

Serving elementary school students through college students, Desjardins coordinates and leads educational outreach programs that are enriching the lives of thousands of children.

In close collaboration with partner school systems and employee volunteers, the NUWC Newport Educational Outreach Program provides valuable opportunities for students to conduct experiments, build underwater vehicles, witness technical demonstrations, and interact with real-world engineers and scientists. These students not only learn about technical subject areas in an interesting way, but also learn that STEM career opportunities exist for everyone, regardless of race, gender or socio-economic background.

Desjardins received her award at an ONR ceremony held on Nov. 5, 2018 in Arlington, Virginia.

NUWC Division Newport, part of the Naval Sea Systems Command (NAVSEA), is one of two divisions of the Naval Undersea Warfare Center. NUWC Division Newport’s mission is to provide research, development, test and evaluation, engineering and fleet support for submarines, autonomous underwater systems, undersea offensive and defensive weapons systems, and countermeasures. NUWC’s other division is located in Keyport, Washington.