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Mary McKernan’s Memory Supports STEAM Students at Mercy High School

Mercy High School experiment

Mary McKernan made a tremendous impact in her 18-year career as a federal contracts manager and the federal business group controller at HDR before she passed away in September 2016. Now her memory will have a lasting impact on the students of Mercy High School in Omaha, Nebraska.

As a 1982 Mercy High graduate, Mary was a debater, cheerleader and track athlete. Throughout her adult life, she remained an active and passionate alumna.  She often said Mercy High School provided the educational foundation necessary to succeed in a competitive business world.

In the weeks and months following her death, Mary’s HDR colleagues united to help her former high school provide today’s students with a foundation for an enhanced 21st-century education experience. Through the efforts of Mary’s colleagues, donations in her memory played a significant role in renovating classroom space to put more emphasis on the study of science, technology, engineering, arts and math.

Mercy High School was able to renovate two laboratory spaces to support its current science, chemistry and physics courses as well as build on the STEAM foundation for future curriculums. These spaces were specifically designed to facilitate interactive experimentation and collaboration. The new labs were opened to students for the 2018 school year with a dedication and donor reception last month.

“In celebration of Mary McKernan’s life and her connection as a Mercy High School alumnus, we are proud to be a part of this important renovation and delighted that our former colleague’s memory lives on,” said Doug McAneny, HDR group president, federal. “Mary’s HDR family was honored to partner with faculty and administrators to enhance the experience and education of the young women of Mercy High School in Mary’s name.”

 About HDR

For more than a century, HDR has partnered with clients to shape communities and push the boundaries of what’s possible. Our expertise spans nearly 10,000 employees, in more than 200 locations around the world — and counting. Our engineering, architecture, environmental and construction services bring an impressive breadth of knowledge to every project. Our optimistic approach to finding innovative solutions defined our past and drives our future.