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Board 114: Undergraduate Engineering Retention and Enrichment through Implementation of an NSF IUSE Project in an Underrepresented Hispanic-serving Institution

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2019 ASEE Annual Conference & Exposition


Tampa, Florida

Publication Date

June 15, 2019

Start Date

June 15, 2019

End Date

June 19, 2019

Conference Session

NSF Grantees Poster Session

Tagged Topics

Diversity and NSF Grantees Poster Session

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Paper Authors


Ashis Nandy Northern New Mexico College

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Dr. Ashis Nandy is an Associate Professor of Electromechanical Engineering Technology at the Northern New Mexico College, Espanola, New Mexico. He received his Ph. D. in Mechanical Engineering from the Pennsylvania State University in 2012. Prior to that, he earned a Master’s degree in Aerospace Engineering from the Indian Institute of Technology Kanpur, India (2006), and a Bachelor degree in Mechanical Engineering from Jadavpur University, Kolkata, India (2001). Dr. Nandy had served as a Co-Principal Investigator of an NSF S-STEM Project, and is currently serving as the Principal-Investigator of an NSF IUSE project. Dr. Nandy is a member of the American Society of Mechanical Engineers (ASME), and American Society for Engineering Education (ASEE).

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Steve Cox Northern New Mexico College

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Schooled at Marquette University in Electrical Engineering and Rensselaer Polytechnic Institute and New York University in Mathematics. Joined the Department of Computational and Applied Mathematics at Rice University in 1988 and the Department of Neuroscience at Baylor College of Medicine in 2004. Held visiting positions in Madrid, Cologne and Nancy. At Rice, was awarded six campus-wide teaching awards, served as College Master for 10 years, served as founding Director of the Rice Center for Teaching Excellence, as founding Director of BrainSTEM (a weekly outreach program that pairs University Neuroscience student mentors with High School Apprentices) and as founding Director of the Gulf Coast Consortium for Theoretical and Computational Neuroscience. Has published over 50 papers in peer-reviewed journals in Mathematics, Engineering and Science. Coauthored the text, Mathematics for Neuroscientists, with Fabrizio Gabbiani. Joined the Engineering Faculty at Northern New Mexico College in 2016, intent on recruiting, mentoring, teaching, challenging and collaborating with students in STEM (Science Technology Engineering and Mathematics) fields.

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Stephanie Amedeo-Marquez Northern New Mexico College

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Dr. Stephanie Amedeo Marquez
Professor of Psychology and Social Sciences
PhD in Sociology/Criminology
Expertise in social science research methods for assessment of student learning.
Co-PI for NSF EDUCERE grant at Northern New Mexico College

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Through the support of an NSF IUSE grant project, the College of Engineering and Technology (CET) has implemented a comprehensive strategy and work-plan to increase the retention rate and eventually the graduation rate of severely underprepared aspiring Engineering majors. The institute serves underrepresented minority student population; nearly two thirds of whom rely on Pell grants and about 50% of them are first generation college students. The institution’s struggle to retain general student population is evident from the following data: 78% retention from first to second semester, 66% retention from second to third semester and, the retention rate drops to 50% by the fourth semester.

The major goals of the project include: 1) Improve Engineering learning and learning environments: improve the knowledge base for defining, identifying, and innovating effective undergraduate engineering education using evidence-based resources and pedagogies; 2) Broaden participation for Engineering learning: increase the number of students recruited and retained in the Engineering program; 3) Build the professional Engineering workforce for future: improve the preparation of undergraduates so they succeed as productive members of the future engineering workforce and be engaged in STEM-literate society. To achieve the goals, the CET has taken the following measures over the last two years: 1) Re-envision and redesign the freshman level Engineering Physics and Math courses and curriculum to facilitate accelerated Math and Science remediation. This include development of total five Engineering Math and Physics courses in proper sequence following contextualized delivery, active learning approach, and student support structure such as peer tutoring and mentoring; 2) Providing upper-division students with paid Undergraduate Research Experience (URE) and also peer-tutoring/mentoring opportunities ; 3) Preparing Engineering students for future workforce through on-job trainings by providing internship opportunities. The project focuses on evaluating the effectiveness of active versus theoretical learning in early Engineering Physics and Math classes among Engineering majors.

The paper describes the specifics of the project implementation; including the curriculum changes along with the sequence adopted, content delivery methods, the student support structure, etc. It also discusses the specific outcomes and effectiveness of the project so far in relation to the project goals, such as student enrollment, retention, performance, persistence, and also, student engagement in research and workforce trainings.

Nandy, A., & Cox, S., & Amedeo-Marquez, S. (2019, June), Board 114: Undergraduate Engineering Retention and Enrichment through Implementation of an NSF IUSE Project in an Underrepresented Hispanic-serving Institution Paper presented at 2019 ASEE Annual Conference & Exposition , Tampa, Florida. 10.18260/1-2--32196

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