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Capstone Internships for Engineering Management Professional Science Master’s Degrees Benefit Students and Employers

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2018 ASEE Annual Conference & Exposition


Salt Lake City, Utah

Publication Date

June 23, 2018

Start Date

June 23, 2018

End Date

July 27, 2018

Conference Session

Graduate Studies Potpourri

Tagged Division

Graduate Studies

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Paper Authors


Saeed D. Foroudastan Middle Tennessee State University

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Dr. Saeed Foroudastan is the Associate Dean for the College of Basic and Applied Sciences (CBAS). The CBAS oversees 10 departments at Middle Tennessee State University. He is also the current Director for the Masters of Science in Professional Science program and a professor of engineering technology at MTSU. Foroudastan received his B.S. in civil engineering, his M.S. in civil engineering, and his Ph.D. in mechanical engineering from Tennessee Technological University. Additionally, he has six years of industrial experience as a Senior Engineer and 20 years of academic experience as a professor, Associate Professor, and Assistant Professor. Foroudastan’s academic experience includes teaching at Tennessee Technological University and Middle Tennessee State University in the areas of civil engineering, mechanical engineering, and engineering technology. He has actively advised undergraduate and graduate students, alumni, and minority students in academics and career guidance. Foroudastan has also served as Faculty Advisor for SAE, Mechanical Engineering Technology, Pre-engineering, ASME, Experimental Vehicles Program (EVP), and Tau Alpha Pi Honors Society. In addition to Foroudastan’s teaching experience, he also has performed extensive research and published numerous technical papers. He has secured more than $2 million in the form of both internal and external grants and research funding. Foroudastan is the faculty advisor, coordinator, and primary fundraiser for EVP teams entering national research project competitions such as the Formula SAE Collegiate Competition, the Baja SAE Race, the SolarBike Race, the Great Moonbuggy Race, and the Solar Boat Collegiate Competition. For his concern for and dedication to his students, Foroudastan received MTSU awards such as the 2002-03 Outstanding Teaching Award, the 2005-06 Outstanding Public Service Award, and the 2007 Faculty Advisor of the Year Award. He received the Excellence in Engineering Education Award and Faculty Advisor Award from the Society of Automotive Engineers (SAE). He was also nominated for the MTSU 2005 and 2009-11 Outstanding Research Award. He received two Academic Excellence awards from the Tennessee Board of Region in 2010-11. Foroudastan has also won many College of Basic and Applied Science awards. In addition to this, Foroudastan also reviews papers for journals and conference proceedings of ASEE, ASEE-SE, and ASME, and he has been a session moderator for several professional conferences.

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Carey Michael Snowden Middle Tennessee State University

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Carey Snowden serves as the Graduate Coordinator for the Master of Science in Professional Science (MSPS) programs at Middle Tennessee State University, which includes the Engineering Management M.S. program. His duties include placing students into their capstone internships, recruiting students into the programs, and coordinating with the MSPS advisory board. He received his B.S. in Biology from the University of Alabama and his M.S. in Genetics from the University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill. Carey’s passion is STEM student development, with an emphasis on developing programming and mentorships for under-represented minority, first generation, female, and LGBT+ STEM students. In his career, he has worked to create and re-start student clubs for these cohorts to develop impactful outreach, mentorship, and professional development opportunities.

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Capstone Internships for Engineering Management Professional Science Master’s Degrees Benefit Students and Employers

Professional Science Master’s (PSM) degree programs combine advanced STEM education with MBA-level business classes and a capstone internship. These programs produce successful graduates in the science and engineering management fields. Our Engineering Management PSM program is designed to provide students with an engineering management education both inside and outside the classroom through the region’s booming manufacturing industry. The capstone internships for the Engineering Management program greatly benefits both the student and the employer. For students, these internships provide an opportunity to put into practice both their engineering management and business management education. Additionally, over 70% of our students are offered employment at their place of internship after they have completed it. Since the Engineering Management program began, the internship has been consistently listed as the most popular part of the degree program and a primary reason for choosing to enter the program. The experience that PSM students get from internships is one of the reasons why their average starting salaries are often double those with just an undergraduate degree. These internships are also of great benefit to the employers. Since these students have completed a majority of their classwork, the projects and expectations for their work can be at a much higher level than work expected of undergraduate interns or recent college graduates. Many industries in the region have projects that they would like to have completed, but due to labor and time shortages never get done. Engineering management interns provide them with a highly skilled worker who can complete the project at reduced labor cost. Furthermore, since these students have had additional coursework in business management, they have the soft skills needed to accomplish these projects independently with minimum supervision.

Foroudastan, S. D., & Snowden, C. M. (2018, June), Capstone Internships for Engineering Management Professional Science Master’s Degrees Benefit Students and Employers Paper presented at 2018 ASEE Annual Conference & Exposition , Salt Lake City, Utah. 10.18260/1-2--30175

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