Van Vleck Junior High School Chapter

WIT Bracelet Story

The WIT bracelet is made of leather and steel. Because we are training for the workforce, it is important to take this opportunity to talk about the history of these two materials. Leather has been in use for thousands of years. The Egyptians were using leather in 5000 B.C. for sandals, gloves, and military equipment. such as in saddles for horses or the reins for an ox pulling a plow. Today leather is still used for gloves and boots as a means of modern protection and remains a vital part of our culture. Leather represents something that is durable, but also incredibly adaptable that has stood the test of time. Fellow students, when you see the leather of your bracelet, remember that you too must be durable and flexible. While things in life might not go as planned, if you are durable and flexible you can get through it. 

Steel is a combination of iron, carbon and small amounts of other elements. This mixture has also withstood the test of time. It revolutionized our country as we transitioned from primarily wood to steel in the early 1800’s as we began the industrial revolution. It was used to build railroads, bridges, structures and to improve shipping vessels. Steel continues to be used throughout our industrial world. Steel is designed to be strong, yet moldable and adaptable. Made up of elements that by themselves are weak, when put together, they are strong. So, my fellow students, when you see the steel of your bracelet remember that you also need to be moldable. Alone we may falter, but together, we are strong. You all represent this organization and your school with pride.

WIT (Workforce Industry Training)

This program is for high school students who have an interest in expanding their knowledge and understanding and/or careers in science, technology, engineering and mathematics (STEM). More specifically, the program is designed for mentoring and encouragement to prepare students for STEM-rich programs at universities, two-year technical colleges and technical certificate programs. By participating in WIT, students gain exposure to higher education and career opportunities while building the confidence to consider further STEM education. The WIT program engages students through local sponsors within participating schools in Texas.

WIT Jr (Workforce Industry Training Jr)

Stemming from continued interest and requests from NPI partners, WIT Jr helps NPI’s efforts of expanding its network, while bridging the gap between NPI’s elementary and high school programs. WIT Jr bridges this gap by specifically serving the junior high/middle school age group, while also encouraging students to join the original WIT program upon entering high school. By participating in WIT Jr, pre-teen and early teen students gain exposure to higher education and career opportunities while building the confidence to consider STEM education.

All WIT JR students can participate in activities such as:

  • Enjoy mentoring activities by industry professionals.

    Workforce Industry Training and Achieving Together With Optimistic Mentoring students were able to visit Moody Gardens in Galveston, Texas, to learn about plant, animal and ocean life.

  • Visit STEM industries to gain awareness and develop preparation.

  • Hear from and meet professional guest speakers.

  • Take part in professional development activities.

  • Visit universities and community colleges.

  • Participate in community engagement and mentoring activities.

WIT Explained

Texas A&M University Nuclear Power Institute Information

NPI Webpage

Highlights: Many of our students visited Science on Saturday at our local Junior College Campus. There were experiments, displays, and so much more. We our proud our students were able to attend this event.


Link to NPI Website: https://npi.tamu.edu/

2022-2023 WIT JR Members

A. Gutierrez

A. Kyle

A. Hartwell

A. Avila

A. Gonzalez

A. Scott

A. Ridgley

B. Cathey

B. Harvey

J. Borja

G. Coleman

A. Cowan

O. Deshotels

C. Ashworth

E. Isbell

K. Olveda Figueroa

J. Mielsdch

J. Schneider

J. Whilser

B. Van Dyke

E. Adamian

G. Svetlik

H. Anderson

I. Garcia

J. Guzman

J. Lozano

J. Roe

K. Klepac

K. Anderson

T. Dewitt

K. Fischer

A. Baltazar

C. Garcia

C. Branson

R. Gunn

D. Paniagua-Quintana

J. Robertson

B. St. Denis

K. Waller

M. Brinkley

O. Hill

S. Garza

S. Cason

T. Fields

J. Hollaway

M. Hurtado

B. Jolly

K. Junek

M. Lopez

H. Hjorth

M. Mirelez

B. Moldonado

T. Junek

J. Navarro

C. Martinez

G. Roberts

D. St. Denis

I. Wilson

WIT JR. Sponsors

Shelly Orsak sorsak@vvisd.org and Sarah Porter sporter@vvisd.org

Mrs. Orsak and I are very excited to continue to sponsor this amazing organization. A special thank you to Texas A&M University Nuclear Power Institute for giving our students the chance to have these experiences.

Program Activity Calendar



Event Type

Name of Event / Description

September 7th and 8th

WIT Interviews

Potential Member I Interviews

September 12th

Candidates were given acceptance letters

Acceptance Letter were received during Math Class

November 9th


Student discussed upcoming trips

December 9th


Attended Houston Museum for Engineering STEM Exhibit

December 9th


Provided Lunch and discussed January plans and meeting date

Adventures with Van Vleck Jr. Work Force Industry Training Organization

Field Trip 3

Field Trip 4

Field Trip 5





Thank you to our sponsor:


"The Workforce Industry Training (WIT) program is funded and supported by the Nuclear Power Institute (NPI), a joint center of Texas A&M University (TAMU) and Texas A&M Engineering Experiment Station (TEES)."