Catholic Transcript Magazine of the Roman Catholic Archdiocese of Hartford Connecticut

Sunday, June 24, 2018


WEST HAVEN – Matthew Montano, a junior at Notre Dame High School, missed school during the first week of March but received an educational experience of a lifetime. He is one of 300 students from around the world who participated in the Honeywell Leadership Challenge Academy (HLCA) in Huntsville, Ala.

 Mr. Montano, of Milford, is a member of both the National Honor Society and Spanish Honor Society. He has been on the varsity basketball team for three years.

 HLCA uses interactive technology, science-oriented workshops and team exercises to teach children of Honeywell employees leadership skills in science, technology, engineering and math, also known as STEM. Activities are delivered in fun and innovative ways that bring STEM studies to life. The program is designed to build students’ leadership skills and develop their capacities through hands-on challenges.

During the program, the students, all between the ages of 16 and 18, meet scientists, engineers and former astronauts who reinforce core leadership competencies and share their first-hand professional experiences. Students engage in team-building challenges such as designing, building and testing their own rockets; participating in simulated astronaut training, shuttle missions and a moonwalk; and conducting DNA extraction experiments on fruit.

“We are very proud of Matthew for being selected to attend this Honeywell educational experience,” said Holy Cross Brother James Branigan, president Notre Dame. “This trip will not only broaden his horizons from an academic standpoint but he will also travel to a different part of the country and meet people from across the globe. We know he will have a great time and come home with a great educational experience.”

Tom Buckmaster, president of Honeywell Hometown Solutions, the company’s global corporate citizenship initiative, said the goal of the program is to continue to develop leaders, engineers and scientists who will be able to address future challenges.