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Board 38: S-STEM Summer Scholarship for a Sophomore Bridge: Year 1 in Review

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Conference

2018 ASEE Annual Conference & Exposition

Location

Salt Lake City, Utah

Publication Date

June 23, 2018

Start Date

June 23, 2018

End Date

July 27, 2018

Conference Session

NSF Grantees Poster Session

Tagged Topic

NSF Grantees Poster Session

Page Count

5

Permanent URL

https://peer.asee.org/30020

Download Count

19

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Paper Authors

biography

Katie Evans Louisiana Tech University

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Dr. Katie Evans is the Associate Dean for Strategic Initiatives, the Entergy Corp LP&L/NOPSI #3 & #4 Professor of Mathematics, the Academic Director of Mathematics and Statistics and Online Programs, and the Director of the Integrated STEM Education Research Center (ISERC). She earned her Ph.D. in Mathematics and M.S. in Mathematics at Virginia Tech, Blacksburg, VA. Her research interests include distributed parameter control modeling and simulation, dynamic modeling of physical systems, and STEM education. She has published 20 peer-reviewed publications in these areas, and her research has been funded by the NSF, AFRL, and LA-BOR. She is a member of the IEEE, SIAM, and ASEE.

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Marisa K. Orr Clemson University Orcid 16x16 orcid.org/0000-0001-5944-5846

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Marisa K. Orr is an Assistant Professor in Engineering and Science Education with a joint appointment in the Department of Mechanical Engineering at Clemson University. Her research interests include student persistence and pathways in engineering, gender equity, diversity, and academic policy. Dr. Orr is a recipient of the NSF CAREER Award for her research entitled, “Empowering Students to be Adaptive Decision-Makers.”

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David E. Hall Louisiana Tech University

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David Hall is the James F. Naylor, Jr. Endowed Professor and the Program Chair for Mechanical Engineering at Louisiana Tech University. He received his B.S. from Louisiana Tech and his M.S. and Ph.D. from Georgia Tech. His research interests include trenchless technology and engineering education. He is the primary author of the Living with the Lab first-year engineering experience at Louisiana Tech (www.livingwiththelab.com).

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Mitzi Desselles Louisiana Tech University Orcid 16x16 orcid.org/https://0000-0003-2806-9838

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Dr. Desselles is Associate Professor and Chester Ellis Endowed Professorship in the Department of Psychology and Behavioral Sciences at Louisiana Tech University. She is a member of the graduate faculty in Industrial/Organizational Psychology.

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Abstract

The 2016-17 Academic Year constituted the launch of a new S-STEM Scholarship Program designed to provide rising sophomore engineering majors with a smoother transition into the more difficult mathematics and engineering coursework accompanying the typical “sophomore slump.” The overall objective of the program is to increase engineering retention, thereby leading to an increase in the number of STEM graduates prepared to enter the workforce.

The scholarship program takes places over a 12-week summer term in which participants enroll in the first multivariable calculus course, statics, and a professional development course. The professional development course includes four components: 1) curricular content from “Studying Engineering: A Road Map to a Rewarding Career” by R. B. Landis, 2) the entire curriculum from “Developing Spatial Thinking” by S. A. Sorby, 3) field trips to area companies utilizing engineering methods in the workplace, and 4) faculty mentorship through faculty participation in the industry visits.

The Summer 2017 program included a cohort of 18 students from various engineering majors. Final course grades indicate an 11% drop-fail-withdraw (DFW) rate from statics, a course that has seen a summer DFW rate varying from 26% to 37% over the past five years. The DFW rate for the multivariable calculus course was 5.5%. As a point of reference, the DFW for the first multivariable calculus has varied from 25%-45% over the last two years. There is no other 12-week summer section of this multivariable calculus course, so a direct DFW rate comparison is not available.

In summary, the first cohort of recipients of this S-STEM Scholarship realized strong academic success, exceeding the performance typically observed in these classes. Additionally, program participants wrote reflection essays describing a profound, if not life-changing, student cohort experience, and positive benefits of the visits to area industries. Many students commented that the summer program far exceeded their expectations.

Evans, K., & Orr, M. K., & Hall, D. E., & Desselles, M. (2018, June), Board 38: S-STEM Summer Scholarship for a Sophomore Bridge: Year 1 in Review Paper presented at 2018 ASEE Annual Conference & Exposition , Salt Lake City, Utah. https://peer.asee.org/30020

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