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A Century Long Evolution Of Engineering Education At Idaho State University

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2002 Annual Conference


Montreal, Canada

Publication Date

June 16, 2002

Start Date

June 16, 2002

End Date

June 19, 2002



Conference Session

ASEE Multimedia Session

Page Count


Page Numbers

7.16.1 - 7.16.6



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Paper Authors

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Lee Robinson

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Jody Finnegan

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Gene Stuffle

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D. Subbaram Naidu

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Al Wilson

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Jay Kunze

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Session: 2793

A Century-Long Evolution of Engineering Education at Idaho State University

D. Subbaram Naidu, Jody Finnegan, Al Wilson 1, Lee Robinson, Gene Stuffle, and Jay Kunze

College of Engineering, Idaho State University Pocatello, Idaho, 83209-8060, USA

Abstract: This paper presents the evolution of engineering education at Idaho State University (ISU), Pocatello, Idaho. The primary reason for this account is that the engineering (undergraduate and graduate) program at ISU although small is unique in more than one respect. The undergraduate program started with offering Associate degrees in various disciplines such as Agricultural, Chemical, Civil, Electrical, Mechanical, etc., moved to a BS degree in General Engineering, then to a BS in Engineering with a strong interdisciplinary flavor and then finally evolved with the addition of BS in Civil, Electrical and Mechanical Engineering disciplines. However, the interdisciplinary core has been retained as a requirement for all BS degrees. Further, the graduate programs (MS and PhD) started with a narrow focus on Nuclear Science and Engineering and evolved to MS in Measurement and Control Engineering (MCE), Engineering Structures and Mechanics (ESM), and Environmental Engineering (ENVE) with a strong interdisciplinary component. Similarly the PhD program started with Nuclear Science & Engineering evolved into broad-based PhD program in Engineering and Applied Science between the College of Engineering and the Department of Physics. Efforts are underway to add an emphasis area in Subsurface Sciences in cooperation with the Departments of Geosciences and Mathematics. We believe that at ISU the engineering program from BS to PhD is woven throughout with interdisciplinary fabric.

Introduction: A brief history of the College of Engineering (CoE) is in order. The Academy of Idaho (now Idaho State University) was established in 1901 and 2 of the first 4 graduates from the Academy were “Civil Engineers”. The Engineering program started as a Department of Engineering and Trade during 1910’s, became a part of Division of Agriculture, Engineering and Forestry during 1950s when it started offering 2-year Associate Degrees in Agricultural Engineering (AgE), Chemical Engineering (ChE), Civil Engineering (CE), Electrical Engineering (EE), Mechanical Engineering (ME), and Mining and Metallurgy Engineering(MME). The Idaho State Legislature action in 1965 prohibited ISU from offering

1 Emeritus Professor. Proceedings of the 2002 American Society for Engineering Education Annual Conference & Exposition Copyright ã 2002, American Society for Engineering Education

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Robinson, L., & Finnegan, J., & Stuffle, G., & Naidu, D. S., & Wilson, A., & Kunze, J. (2002, June), A Century Long Evolution Of Engineering Education At Idaho State University Paper presented at 2002 Annual Conference, Montreal, Canada. 10.18260/1-2--10962

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