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Stantec helps promote success and leadership with ANSEP in Alaska

June 14, 2019

Bruce Hopper in the Anchorage, Alaska, office helps with ANSEP’s outreach efforts

At Stantec, we’re committed to building meaningful relationships with Indigenous Peoples and communities. Partnering with the Alaska Native Science and Engineering Program (ANSEP) is just one way we help ensure the next generation of STEM professionals is representative of the communities where we live and work.

ANSEP works with Alaska Native students—from middle school through university—to promote success and leadership in science and engineering. Started in 1995 as a scholarship fund program for post-secondary students, ANSEP has grown to deliver programs beginning at grade six. This comprehensive approach towards nurturing a passion in STEM has impacted over 2,500 ANSEP students in more than 100 Alaskan communities. 

Bruce Hopper, a senior structural engineer based out of our Anchorage office, helps with ANSEP’s outreach efforts. “Over the years, I’ve given presentations at the college level for career day,” Bruce says. “But recently, I’ve been more involved in the middle school program.” 

A bridge-building challenge using balsa wood allows Bruce to impart his structural engineering experience to the ANSEP students. “We test the structural integrity of the bridges by seeing how much weight they can bear before collapsing. That’s everyone’s favorite part,” Bruce says. “For years, Stantec has worked with rural Alaskan Native communities, and by partnering with ANSEP, Stantec can help the youth in these communities develop the skills they need to actively engage in the design of their own futures.”

Balsa wood bridge created by Bruce Hopper

Bruce has been in the engineering field for over 35 years. With expertise in regions experiencing high seismic activity, Bruce brings great insight to the table for ANSEP students—in a very relevant way. Just last November, Anchorage was hit by a 7.0 earthquake. Hands-on projects like the bridge-building challenge are a great way to engage young minds and prepare them to solve the problems of the future.

Programs like these are part of ANSEP’s tireless efforts to expand opportunities and nurture engagement for students across Alaska, and we’re proud to be a strategic sponsor for ANSEP. Since 2016, our contributions have helped fund scholarship programs and educational activities like the one Bruce facilitates. Since we’re an engineering and design firm, sponsoring programs like ANSEP makes sense. And if we’re lucky, maybe alumni from ANSEP will choose a career at Stantec.

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