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Empowering Diversity in STEM: Kimley-Horn Engages with Students at PNW LSAMP Conference

Kimley-Horn PNW LSAMP

Every year, the Pacific Northwest Louis Stokes Alliance for Minority Participation (PNW LSAMP) conference offers students from historically underrepresented groups the forum to network with and hear from professional partners in STEM-related fields. Established by the United States Congress in 1991, the LSAMP program exists to further diversity in STEM by partnering with community colleges and universities across the nation and providing a space for diverse groups to connect through shared experience.

Building Connections and Inspiring Students

For the first time, Kimley-Horn was able to participate in the PNW LSAMP conference this spring through the efforts of Zac Kannan, PE; Chabeli Arreola, E.I.; Gabby Galvez, E.I.; and Lauren Weber. At Portland State University (PSU), Kimley-Horn teammates engaged with students through a panel workshop and an Opportunity Fair.

At the panel workshop, presenters shared their experiences as people of color in STEM. In doing so, they created a safe space of vulnerability for students to express their own challenges and ask questions about navigating the professional world.

The Opportunity Fair then provided the chance for Kimley-Horn teammates to continue the conversation, drawing students into one-on-one interactions and extending an invitation for students to hear about Kimley-Horn’s inclusive culture and career opportunities.

During these events, students spoke of how much they appreciated the chance to hear firsthand about life in the field from individuals with similar backgrounds.

Zac Kannan

Zac Kannan

“Attending this conference was important to me because everyone has different lived experiences that shape who we are and how we see ourselves in the world. There was so much student engagement—we had a line of students for the entire hour of the Opportunity Fair. Incredible turnout!”

About a month after the conference, Zac participated in PSU’s LSAMP-ISS Climate Resilience and Career Pathway Panel as one of two guest speakers. They offered firsthand industry insight on climate and disaster resilience as well as career opportunities and growth within the field.

Kimley-Horn will return to PSU in October for its Engineering and Technology Career Fair and will continue to support a diverse generation of emerging STEM professionals.

Interested in joining Kimley-Horn to make an impact? Learn more about our team’s career opportunities here


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