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Board # 5 : A Mentoring Workshop for an REU Program

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Conference

2017 ASEE Annual Conference & Exposition

Location

Columbus, Ohio

Publication Date

June 24, 2017

Start Date

June 24, 2017

End Date

June 28, 2017

Conference Session

NSF Grantees Poster Session

Tagged Topic

NSF Grantees Poster Session

Page Count

13

Permanent URL

https://peer.asee.org/27868

Download Count

58

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Paper Authors

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Carol Barry University of Massachusetts, Lowell

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Carol Barry is a professor of Plastics Engineering at the University of Massachusetts Lowell. She received her Doctor of Engineering degree in Plastics Engineering from the University of Massachusetts Lowell and her Bachelor of Science in Chemistry from Boston College. Her research focuses on advanced manufacturing and she has directed REU programs for the last 12 years.

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Carol Lynn Alpert Museum of Science, Boston Orcid 16x16 orcid.org/0000-0003-4364-3324

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Carol Lynn Alpert directs the Strategic Projects Group at the Museum of Science, Boston (MOS). She is co-director of the NSF Science-Technology Center for Integrated Quantum Materials (CIQM) based at Harvard, MIT, Howard, and MOS, and she has othe NSF awards and subawards in areas of biological imaging, scalable nanomanufacturing, and undergraduate training. Alpert teaches an annual year-long Research Communication Laboratory seminar at MIT’s Research Laboratory of Electronics, and provides science communication coaching and professional development to students and faculty at several universities. Alpert co-founded the NSF Nanoscale Informal Science Education Network in 2005, which has since broadened into a National Informal Science Education Network. She is a member of the Section Y Steering Group of the American Association for the Advancement of Science.

Alpert founded the Presentation Rx Clinic for meeting speakers and moderators at the AAAS Annual Meeting, and her group coordinates a multi-university network of providers of two professional development courses they created: the REU Science Communication Workshop, and the Sharing Science Workshop & Practicum for university researchers.

Alpert has written and presented widely on forging museum/research-center partnerships, on interpreting current science in museums, coaching researchers in science communication, engaging public audiences in nanotechnology, and engaging stakeholders in nano-EHS risk communications. The MOS Strategic Projects Group produces professional development workshops in science communication and mentoring skills, as well as a variety of informal science education programs on current research in physics, chemistry, biology, and medicine. These include public presentations, hands-on inquiry-based learning experiences, science theatre, films, podcasts, and displays. The 2009 dramatic production, The Amazing Nano Brothers Juggling Show, has been seen by over 90,000 people at museums, schools, and science festivals, and was cited in the recent (2016) National Academy publication, Effective Chemistry Communication in Informal Environments. The NanoNerds YouTube channel has over 1700 subscribers. The Talking Nano DVD collection has been distributed to over 1300 high schools and museums. More than 95,000 people have attended the group's Museum presentations on current research. Alpert’s 2012 film, Inventeens: a High School Engineering Challenge, produced in collaboration with Lawrence Klein, earned Golden Cine and Silver Telly awards. The companion film, Hands-on, Minds-on: Bringing Engineering Design to High School Classrooms earned a Bronze Telly. From Lab to Fab: Pioneers in Nanomanufacturing is the group's latest and most significant film project to date, with over 16,000 views online.

Alpert studied biology and history at Harvard and graduated magna cum laude and Phi Beta Kappa with a thesis in the History of Science. She produced exhibit films for the American Museum of Natural History and PBS science and history television documentaries for about 15 years, working with the NOVA Science Unit, The American Experience, Frontline, La Plaza, and with several multi-part international co-productions. Alpert also edited the New York Times best-seller, The Art of Possibility, by Rosamund Zander and Ben Zander. She joined the Museum of Science in 1999 to build the Current Science & Technology Center, recipient of the 2002 DOE-NIST "50 Best Practices in Communicating Science and Technology" award and the 2002 American Association of Museums Gold MUSE award for “Highest Standards of Excellence in the Use of Media & Technology for Interpretation & Education in Science."
(submitted Feb 2017)

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Karine Thate Museum of Science, Boston

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Karine Thate is a program manager and educator at the Museum of Science, Boston, who works closely with several NSF research centers and collaborative research projects on the topic of nanoscale science and engineering. Karine develops and delivers museum programs, podcasts and special events for public audiences and provides professional development workshops in science communication and education outreach for early career researchers.

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Abstract

A Research Experiences for Undergraduate (REU) program provided students from local community colleges with a 10-week-long summer research experience at the University of Massachusetts Lowell. Each REU participant was assigned a research project, a faculty advisor, and a graduate student mentor. Few of the advisors and mentors had prior experience working with community college students, and few had received formal training in mentoring at all. In response, the REU director and a team of professional development specialists at the Museum of Science Boston designed a new approach to the typical REU mentoring workshop. This new workshop combined traditional mentor training content and approaches with some new content and approaches designed to 1) draw on the foundational experiences of the mentors themselves; 2) help them develop special sensitivity to dealing with the potential needs of a community college cohort; 3) stimulate the development of a peer-learning community for continued improvement in mentorship practices; and 4) place special emphasis on the importance of science communication training for mentors and mentees alike. Because of time constraints, the workshop was designed to fit into a four-hour session, including lunch. The mentoring workshop was attended by all graduate student mentors and several faculty members. Informal discussions with the participants and a post-workshop evaluation showed that faculty and graduate student participants found the workshop enjoyable and provided valuable insights and outcomes; this view was also shared by graduate students with prior experience mentoring undergraduate researchers. This paper provides details on the content of the workshop, its evaluation, and changes being made for the next mentoring workshop.

Barry, C., & Alpert, C. L., & Thate, K. (2017, June), Board # 5 : A Mentoring Workshop for an REU Program Paper presented at 2017 ASEE Annual Conference & Exposition, Columbus, Ohio. https://peer.asee.org/27868

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