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Catalyzing and Supporting Minority Talent Development in STEM fields: An Structured Mentoring Model to Inspire Young Engineering Minds

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Conference

2011 ASEE Annual Conference & Exposition

Location

Vancouver, BC

Publication Date

June 26, 2011

Start Date

June 26, 2011

End Date

June 29, 2011

ISSN

2153-5965

Conference Session

Developing Young MINDS in Engineering, Part II

Tagged Division

Minorities in Engineering

Page Count

11

Page Numbers

22.313.1 - 22.313.11

DOI

10.18260/1-2--17594

Permanent URL

https://peer.asee.org/17594

Download Count

67

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Paper Authors

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Heidi A. Taboada University of Texas, El Paso

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Dr. Heidi A. Taboada is currently an Assistant Professor in the department of Industrial, Manufacturing and Systems Engineering at The University of Texas, El Paso. Her research strengths involve the development of practical methods for the solution of multiple objective optimization problems, the design of new biologically inspired algorithms, sustainability engineering, and engineering education. Her research work has been published in several recognized journals such as IIE Transactions, IEEE Transactions on Reliability, and Reliability Engineering & Systems Safety, among others.

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Jose F. Espiritu University of Texas, El Paso

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Dr. Jose F. Espiritu is an Assistant Professor in the Industrial, Manufacturing and Systems Engineering Department at The University of Texas, El Paso. He is interested in interdisciplinary research that focuses in the understanding of the energy and sustainability challenges and alternative energy issues through innovative solutions for consumers and industry. His research work has been published in several recognized journals such as Electric Power Systems Research, The Engineering Economist, Journal of Risk and Reliability, among others.

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Emmanuel Gurrola

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Emmanuel Gurrola is currently a Master of Science candidate in the Industrial, Manufacturing and Systems Engineering department at the University of Texas at El Paso. Emmanuel’s research interests include optimization modeling, portfolio optimization and energy management.

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Abstract

Catalyzing and Supporting Minority Talent Development in STEM fields: An Structured Mentoring Model to Inspire Young Engineering MindsThe identification and development of science minority talent is important for the future vitalityof scientific research. This development is essential because demographic trends show that in thenext 20 years minorities will constitute an increasing portion of the US population, especially inthe pool of potential college students. Despite the growing number of STEM careers in theAmerican economy, education statistics suggest that far too few Hispanic students are beingencouraged and able to take advantage of opportunities in technical disciplines. According tonational statistics, Hispanics are not only the largest minority in the United States but also one ofthe fastest growing.This paper describes the Catalyzing and Supporting Minority Talent Development modeldeveloped to attract and retain minority students in STEM related fields. The proposed modelspans the educational engineering spectrum, impacting high school students and teachers,undergraduate and graduate students through structured education, research and mentoringactivities. The main components of the present model are: 1) Teaching Teachers to Teach Engineering (T3E) program 2) Peer Undergraduate Mentoring Program (PUMP) 3) Optimization Models for Engineering Research Class 4) Summer Research Experiences for Undergraduates in Engineering Optimization 5) Speaker Seminar Series & Graduate School SeminarFirst, through the participation of high school teachers in the Teaching Teachers to TeachEngineering (T3E) program, teachers benefit by having a tested set of standards-based curriculato take back into their classrooms, coupled with the confidence of having learned how to teachengineering content. Secondly, through the Peer Undergraduate Mentoring Program (PUMP),sophomore students are able to be part of a supportive peer environment, in which a sense ofbelonging, and a exposure to role models facilitate their growth and development as engineers.Thirdly, through the development of the new Optimization Models for Engineering ResearchClass, students are introduced to mathematical thinking and optimization modeling. A strongemphasis is given to learning optimization software. Additionally, a requirement for this class isthat students are involved in research projects with applications in some of our College ofEngineering strategic areas such as Sustainability Engineering, Border Security, EnergySustainability, and Biomedical Engineering. Through the Summer Research Experiences forUndergraduates in Engineering Optimization, students acquire a variety of research skills andparticipate in a research project. Finally, through attendance to the Speaker Seminar Series andthe Graduate School Seminar students gain an understanding of the expectations, demands, rolerequirements, and necessary strategies within research as an academic profession. The ultimategoal of these structured seminar series is to generate student interest in graduate school.Two main types of evaluations are used to ensure that the key objectives of this work are met: 1)formative evaluations are used to provide continuous feedback on whether our initial statedobjectives are met or not, and 2) summative evaluations are used to measure how effectively theproposed model accomplished its stated goals.

Taboada, H. A., & Espiritu, J. F., & Gurrola, E. (2011, June), Catalyzing and Supporting Minority Talent Development in STEM fields: An Structured Mentoring Model to Inspire Young Engineering Minds Paper presented at 2011 ASEE Annual Conference & Exposition, Vancouver, BC. 10.18260/1-2--17594

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