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NEWS | June 30, 2022

NUWC Division Newport scientist wins 2022 Society of Women Engineers Helen Martha Sternberg Award

By NUWC Division Newport Public Affairs

Katherine Hurtado-da Silva, a scientist in the Naval Undersea Warfare Center Division Newport Undersea Warfare Combat Systems Department, has won the 2022 Society of Women Engineers Helen Martha Sternberg Award.

The Helen Martha Sternberg Award is given annually to a female mathematician, computer scientist or computer engineer working at NUWC Division Newport between six months and two years. The candidate must show significant progress in her major area of study and plan on attaining her graduate degree.

Hurtado-da Silva, a native of Queens, New York, and resident of Westerly, Rhode Island, joined Division Newport in 2020 and currently serves as a member of the Reliability, Availability and Maintainability (RAM) team. Before starting her career at Division Newport, she served as a high school principal in New York City. 

“Leveraging her undergraduate degree in mathematics, she has quickly acclimated to the technical environment and produced high quality deliverables,” the award states. “The award recognizes that Hurtado-da Silva’s efforts deliver results that are extraordinary for a new professional as well as a student pursuing her educational goals.”

Since learning RAM modelling, Hurtado-da Silva has taken on the lead role in producing the Virginia-class life cycle support metrics in support of the Defense Acquisition Executive Summary. Over the past year, she also led the completion of the reliability modelling and analysis of technical insertion 20 Columbia-class Integrated Submarine Imaging System and has taken on the responsibility of reporting the Type 20 mast reliability. 

“In these roles, she interacts with various managers and resource sponsors and demonstrates excellent customer focus and responsiveness,” the award states. 

Hurtado-da Silva is currently enrolled in a master’s degree program in applied data science at Syracuse University through the Part-Time Academic Program so that she can learn and gain expertise in her field at Division Newport. She has aspirations of obtaining a doctorate degree within the next five years.

The award was presented at a Division Newport ceremony held on June 23.  

NUWC Newport is the oldest warfare center in the country, tracing its heritage to the Naval Torpedo Station established on Goat Island in Newport Harbor in 1869. Commanded by Capt. Chad Hennings, NUWC Newport maintains major detachments in West Palm Beach, Florida, and Andros Island in the Bahamas, as well as test facilities at Seneca Lake and Fisher's Island, New York, Leesburg, Florida, and Dodge Pond, Connecticut.

Join our team! NUWC Division Newport, one of the 20 largest employers in Rhode Island, employs a diverse, highly trained, educated, and skilled workforce. We are continuously looking for engineers, scientists, and other STEM professionals, as well as talented business, finance, logistics and other support experts who wish to be at the forefront of undersea research and development. Please connect with NUWC Division Newport Recruiting at this site- https://www.navsea.navy.mil/Home/Warfare-Centers/NUWC-Newport/Career-Opportunities/ and follow us on LinkedIn @NUWC-Newport and on Facebook @NUWCNewport.