Salt Lake City, Utah
June 20, 2004
June 20, 2004
June 23, 2004
9.401.1 - 9.401.6
Developing an Appreciation for Careers in Research Through the Texas Research Experience Program
Andrea M. Ogilvie The University of Texas at Austin
Abstract The Texas Research Experience (TREX) Program at The University of Texas at Austin has produced valuable research opportunities during the academic year for more than 280 undergraduate minority engineering students. TREX provides students with a unique opportunity to establish strong links with faculty, gain hands-on laboratory experience, and develop an appreciation for research careers in academia and industry. Hosted by the Equal Opportunity in Engineering (EOE) Program for more than 11 years, this paper captures lessons learned over the years and describes how to create a successful undergraduate research program on your campus. Along with an overview of the TREX program and its benefits, the following essential program components are covered in detail: program funding, partnerships with faculty, promoting the program, the application and selection process, student placement, managing the progress of multiple research projects, and project close out requirements. In addition, student perspectives on the benefits of the TREX program have been incorporated into this paper.
The EOE Program at UT Austin was established in 1970 for the recruitment, retention, and academic development of Hispanic, African American, and Native American students interested in pursuing careers in engineering. EOE supports students historically underrepresented in engineering and strives to increase the number of minority engineering graduates from UT Austin through comprehensive support programs that address outreach and recruitment, academic enrichment, leadership, and professional development.
As a result of EOE programs such as TREX, the minority student enrollment for the College of Engineering has increased substantially over the past 32 years, from 94 in 1971, to 912 in Fall 2003, which represents 17.5 percent of the total undergraduate enrollment1. Our vision is to create a student body at UT Austin’s College of Engineering that reflects the demographics of the college age population within the state of Texas, 35 percent ethnic minorities.
Introduction The Texas Research Experience (TREX) Program was created at The University of Texas at Austin in 1992 to provide technical learning experiences for African American, Hispanic, and Native American undergraduate students enrolled in the College of Engineering. TREX was initiated to address the following challenges: (1) lack of African American, Hispanic, and Native American students pursuing graduate degrees in engineering; (2) large percentage of African American, Hispanic, and Native American engineering students with limited exposure to and/or involvement in research projects on campus; (3) African American, Hispanic, and Native American engineering students with limited knowledge about career opportunities in research; and (4) establishment of mentor/mentee relationships between faculty and students. Over 280 Proceedings of the 2004 American Society for Engineering Education Annual Conference & Exposition Copyright © 2004, American Society for Engineering Education
Ogilvie, A. (2004, June), Developing An Appreciation For Careers In Research Through Trex Paper presented at 2004 Annual Conference, Salt Lake City, Utah. https://peer.asee.org/13486
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