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A Decade-long Programmatic Study of SHPE’s Chapter Reporting Program: Best Practices, Lessons Learned, and Outcomes for National Engineering Diversity Chapter-based Organizations (Experience)

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2020 ASEE Virtual Annual Conference Content Access


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Publication Date

June 22, 2020

Start Date

June 22, 2020

End Date

June 26, 2021

Conference Session

Minorities in Engineering Division Technical Session 3

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Minorities in Engineering

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Paper Authors


Mauro Rodriguez Jr California Institute of Technology Orcid 16x16

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Dr. Mauro Rodriguez Jr is a post-doctoral researcher at the California Institute of Technology focusing on cavitation bubble dynamics in and near non-linear viscoelastic materials under the supervision of Professor Tim Colonius. He earned with doctorate in mechanical engineering from the University of Michigan, Ann Arbor under the supervision of Associate Professor Eric Johnsen. Rodriguez's doctoral thesis focused on high-fidelity computational fluid dynamic simulations of bubble dynamics near (linear) viscoelastic media. In 2012, he received Masters of Science in mechanical engineering from Stanford University as a graduate engineering fellow. In 2010, Mauro earned his Bachelors of Science degree with honors in mechanical science and engineering from the University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign (UIUC). Rodriguez is committed to increasing Hispanic participation and success across all levels of science, technology, engineering and math (STEM) workforce pathways. He has served in several national leadership positions for the Society of Hispanic Professional Engineers (SHPE) since 2009.

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Karen Mariela Siles IBM Corporation

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Karen Mariela Siles is a Senior Delivery Manager at the IBM Corporation in Austin, TX. Her current role involves leading the delivery and development of the new IBM service, Virtual Private Cloud Block Storage. She manages a team of 14 individuals and assists Software Engineers and DevOps Engineers to work together to get this service delivered, maintained and supported. Siles has been with IBM since 2007 and has held 10 different roles within IBM. In her role, she collaborates with other Cloud Infrastructure teams and together they released a new IBM product that was available to the public this June. Some of Siles’ roles within IBM have included Software Engineering, Software Support, Cloud OpenSource technologies, and currently managing in the Cloud Infrastructure organization. Siles has been the chair for the Hispanic Employee Resource Group at IBM Austin- Hispanics in Partnership- for the past three years but an active participant for the past 12 years. Along with these activities, Siles has achieved a lot of technical recognition through patent filing with IBM. She has filed 5 patents and published 4 patents, achieving her first Patent Plateau in 2018. While being part of IBM, Siles participated in the companies’ Corporate Service Corp Program in 2015 where she was stationed in Manila, Philippines to provide pro-bono consulting to local agencies. This past May, Siles obtained her Master of Science in Technology Commercialization (MSTC) degree from the University of Texas- Austin – McCombs School of Business where she was awarded the Gary Cadenhead Award for Outstanding Leadership from the McCombs School of Business, MSTC Program.

Siles enjoys giving back to the community through various organizations that focus on overall education specifically in the fields of STEM, as well as female empowerment and equality. Siles’ longest philanthropic achievement has been with the Society of Hispanics Professional Engineers (SHPE). As a lifetime member, Siles has been volunteering with SHPE since 2003 through various roles. These roles included George Mason University Undergraduate Chapter, SHPE Austin Professional Chapter, National Board of Directors from 2011-2013 representing Region V- Vice President. For the past two years, Siles has been helping as the chair for National Affairs Committee (NAC).

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Dora Louise Renaud Society of Hispanic Professional Engineers

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Dora Renaud currently serves as the Senior Director of Academic Programs and Professional Development of the Society of Hispanic Professional Engineers (SHPE). Dora oversees the development and management of grants, scholarships, professional development, and programs that address the needs of SHPE members.
For over a decade Dora has been part of American College of Education, impacting educators across the world by developing curriculum and teaching master level courses in education administration, curriculum and instruction, and bilingual education. Prior to working for SHPE, she was a public school administrator serving campuses with over 1,500 students. Dora also served as the instructional specialist and curriculum director for 245 elementary, middle and high school campuses. She has collaborated with other faculty and departments across the nation to develop graduate programs with clear course objectives, learning outcomes and engaging, rigorous curriculum that leads to student achievement. Dora has been an international literacy trainer with a focus on linguistics, literacy development, and second language learners. In addition, she has served on the boards of directors for the Association of Hispanic School Administrators, Texas Reading Association, and Chess for Humanity.
Dora is a former fellow of the Teaching Trust Executive Leadership Teams Program where she learned how to lead with trust and influence in order to achieve results and increase technical competence of her team while simultaneously increasing the team's effectiveness. She has been a part of the Game Changers Executive Training visiting highly effective corporations to learn from CEOs on how to build strong culture and climate. Dora was selected to participate in the Cooperative Superintendency Program which is an executive leadership program to gain the skills necessary to become effective superintendents.
Dora earned her doctorate in Education Administration from the University of Texas at Austin in 2014. She has a Master’s of Science in Reading, Bachelors of Science in Interdisciplinary Studies and a specialization in Bilingual Education. Her published research is in the area of professional development for educational leaders. Dora is a fluent Spanish speaker and enjoys learning new languages. She is a native Texan with strong Hispanic roots. During her spare time, she loves spending time with her family and friends traveling, reading, cycling, and most importantly spending time with her three dogs Tessa, Max and Hanz.

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The Society of Hispanic Professional Engineers (SHPE) has continuously grown from a single professional chapter in Los Angeles to an organization comprised of over 200 student and 80 professional chapters across the U.S. As the organization grew across the country through the 1980-1990s, SHPE’s internal organization infrastructure evolved and consisted of a staff and board that focused on the fiduciary duties, governance, and operations of the organization. Throughout the 1990s-2000’s, the chapter and membership growth of the organization stemmed from the growth of its episodic, event-based programming, i.e., National Technical Careers Conference (now named the SHPE Convention), National Institute for Leadership Advancement (NILA), and the Regional Leadership Development Conferences (RLDCs). National committees, determined by the SHPE executive and comprised of SHPE volunteers, focused on the development and operation of continuous programming. During the 1990’s, the National Student Affairs Committee was created to focus on the chapter-based/-focused programming (which serves professionals, graduate and undergraduate students). During the mid-2000’s, the National Student Affairs Committee evolved to the National Affairs Committee (NAC) and oversees three key components for the organization: (i) chapter bylaw approvals, (ii) regional leadership training, and (iii) chapter development, reporting, and compliance.

SHPE chapter development, reporting, and compliance started as a nationalized chapter program named, at the time, the End-of-Year Report (EOYR) program and evolved to the National Report Program (NRP) and is the focus of the present work. Throughout the 2010’s, SHPE underwent internal infrastructure evolutions, including an inter-organizational merger, in order to expand and be better able to fulfill its mission to serve the Hispanic community. The NRP also underwent transformations from the EOYR which focused on chapter compliance to the current iteration of the NRP which supplements on the former by targeting chapter growth, development and management through a STEM workforce-preparedness pedagogical framework. Moreover, the current NRP has evolved past its namesake of reporting to being the leading SHPE program that educates and provides the management and operations tools for chapter’s to ensure their mission alignment and compliance towards the success of the members.

The study of the decade-long transformation of the NRP serves as a case-study regarding how grassroots, chapter-based national engineering diversity organizations scale and mature their nationalized chapter programming to be continuous-development cycle and data-driven. The two hypotheses of this work are that: (i) the study serves as an example of best practices and lessons for other peer chapter-based national engineering diversity organizations and (ii) the current NRP programmatic pedagogical structure serves as robust system to prepare Hispanics STEM professionals for the STEM workforce and ensure organizational mission fulfillment. The experience report will detail the study as a decade-by-decade timeline of the NRP as it was changing and implemented and the benefits and limitations that were addressed as the program matured. In addition to the decade-long history and evidence of the success of the current program infrastructure, the experience report will detail an analysis of the lessons learned, current outcomes, and future plans of the NRP within SHPE current strategic plan.

Rodriguez, M., & Siles, K. M., & Renaud, D. L. (2020, June), A Decade-long Programmatic Study of SHPE’s Chapter Reporting Program: Best Practices, Lessons Learned, and Outcomes for National Engineering Diversity Chapter-based Organizations (Experience) Paper presented at 2020 ASEE Virtual Annual Conference Content Access, Virtual On line . 10.18260/1-2--33997

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