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Building Academic Paths In Engineering And Technology For Underrepresented Students

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2008 Annual Conference & Exposition


Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania

Publication Date

June 22, 2008

Start Date

June 22, 2008

End Date

June 25, 2008



Conference Session

Foster Excellence

Tagged Division

Minorities in Engineering

Page Count


Page Numbers

13.263.1 - 13.263.8



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Paper Authors

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Ardie Walser City College of the City University of New York

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NOTE: The first page of text has been automatically extracted and included below in lieu of an abstract

Building Academic Paths in Engineering and Technology for Underrepresented Students


We wish to report in this paper the challenges and successes in creating and implementing joint/dual programs in engineering and the potential such programs have for increasing the number of traditionally unrepresented groups in science, mathematics, engineering and technology. We will describe along with the curriculum of the program the administrative infrastructure that is necessary to produce and sustain a smooth process for moving the student from the campus of the two-year institution (community college) to that of the four-year institution (senior college). We will demonstrate how the relative location of the community and senior colleges’ campuses can be exploited to the advantage of the student and how location can sometimes limit certain options in a joint/dual program. We further assert that such programs are an effective means of addressing a critical challenge in the engineering community (namely the lack of underrepresented students in engineering) economically.


The transition from a two-year program to a four-year program can sometimes be difficult for students, particularly those students from traditionally underrepresented groups. Robust and fluid articulation agreements between the two-year and four-year schools can go a long way to minimize the difficulties experienced by students when transferring to a senior college. We reported the collaborative efforts of a two year and four year college to create and implement a jointly registered, dual admission program in engineering. One goal of this report is to give an update on the progress of that collaboration1. In the summer of 2002, Eugenio Maria de Hostos Community College (HCC) and the Grove School of Engineering (GSOE) of the City College of New York (CCNY) created a jointly registered, dual admission program in Electrical Engineering. The program was designed to meet the guidelines of the Accreditation Board for Engineering and Technology (ABET) and provide HCC students with the same curriculum of the first two years of the existing four year Electrical Engineering (E.E) program required at CCNY. Students entering the program are admitted to both HCC and CCNY and for those students that successfully complete the Associate of Science (A.S.) degree in Electrical Engineering Science at HCC they are granted admission to the GSOE at CCNY. HCC is located in the South Bronx, in one of the poorest congressional districts in the country, with a large population of underrepresented students consisting of 80% Latinos, 29% African American and 77% women over the age of twenty-five. With the GSOE a short bus ride away (1.4 miles) from HCC, students in the joint/dual program have easy access to both campuses. This allowed them to take courses at the GSOE that are not offered at HCC. The benefits to students, following the community college track, taking courses at a 4-year college are significant. In a recent report, Adelman2 demonstrated that community college students who were likely to persist and complete a degree, tended to be in a collegiate track that required them to transfer to a 4-year college to attain a bachelor’s degree. Along with an increase in persistence, a community college student who takes courses at a 4-year institute, while still a students at the 2-year school, is in a better position to reduce the negative impact of the culture change, that is manifested in

Walser, A. (2008, June), Building Academic Paths In Engineering And Technology For Underrepresented Students Paper presented at 2008 Annual Conference & Exposition, Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania. 10.18260/1-2--3869

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