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Developing Engineering Formation Systems for Sustainability

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Conference

2021 ASEE Virtual Annual Conference Content Access

Location

Virtual Conference

Publication Date

July 26, 2021

Start Date

July 26, 2021

End Date

July 19, 2022

Conference Session

Sociotechnical Thinking II: Interpretation, Curricular Practices, and Structural Change

Tagged Division

Liberal Education/Engineering & Society

Tagged Topic

Diversity

Page Count

15

DOI

10.18260/1-2--36942

Permanent URL

https://peer.asee.org/36942

Download Count

29

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Paper Authors

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Donna M Riley Purdue University at West Lafayette (COE)

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Donna Riley is Kamyar Haghighi Head of the School of Engineering Education and Professor of Engineering Education at Purdue University.

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Rosalee A Clawson Purdue University Orcid 16x16 orcid.org/0000-0003-2217-3968

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Dragan Maksimovic University of Colorado Boulder Orcid 16x16 orcid.org/0000-0002-8867-0230

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Beth A. Myers University of Colorado Boulder

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Beth A. Myers is an Assistant Vice Provost at the University of Colorado Boulder and Assessment and Evaluation Lead for the ASPIRE Engineering Research Center. Her goal is to facilitate the continuous improvement of the educational experiences of all students and guide policy and practice changes that ensure equity within higher education. Her interests and research expertise are in quantitative and qualitative analytics related to equity in education. She holds a BA in biochemistry, ME in engineering management and PhD in civil engineering.

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Ivonne Santiago P.E. University of Texas at El Paso

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Dr. Ivonne Santiago is a Clinical Professor of the Civil Engineering (CE) Department at the University of Texas at El Paso (UTEP). Dr. Santiago has a combined experience of over 20 years in the areas of water quality, water treatment and wastewater treatment in Puerto Rico (PR), New Mexico and Texas. Dr. Santiago is passionate about providing experiential learning opportunities to both undergraduate and graduate students locally, regionally and internationally with a focus on Hispanic and female students. She is currently Co-PI of UTEP’s NSF-AGEP program focusing on fostering Hispanic doctoral students for academic careers; the Department of Education’s (DoE) STEMGROW Program and DoE’s Program YES SHE CAN. With support from the Center for Faculty Leadership and Development, she leads a Learning Community for Diversity and Inclusion for Innovation at UTEP. She is also a member of two advisory committees to UTEP’s President: The Diversity, Equity, and Inclusion committee and is chair of the Women’s Advisory Council. She is a member at large of the UTEP Council of Academy of Distinguished Teachers. She is secretary-treasurer for the Public Service Board, which manages El Paso Water. She was a member of the Environmental Protection Agency National Advisory Committee (NAC), that advises the Administrator of the EPA on environmental policy issues related to the implementation of the North American Agreement on Environmental Cooperation. Also, she was a member of the Good Neighbor Environmental Board (GNEB) that advises the President and Congress of the United States on good neighbor practices along the U.S./Mexico border. She has received local and state teaching awards: 2014 UTEP’s CETaL Giraffe Award (for sticking her neck out); 2014 College of Engineering Instruction Award; 2014 The University of Texas System Regents’ Outstanding Teaching Award; and the 2012 NCEES Award for students’ design of a Fire Station. She also received 2018 American Society of Civil Engineers’ Texas Section “Service to the People” award, and 2019 El Paso Engineer of the Year by the Texas Society of Professional Engineers. This is the first time in more than 30 years that a UTEP faculty wins this prestigious award.

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Nick A. Stites University of Colorado Boulder

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Nick A. Stites is the Director of the Integrated Teaching and Learning Program and Laboratory at the University of Colorado Boulder. He is also an instructor in the Engineering Plus Program. His research interests include the development of novel pedagogical methods to teach core engineering courses and leveraging technology to enhance learning experiences. Nick has a PhD in Engineering Education, BS and MS degrees in Mechanical Engineering, professional engineering experience, and experience as an instructor at the community-college and research-university level.

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Jennifer L. Taylor University of Colorado Boulder Orcid 16x16 orcid.org/0000-0001-9044-8279

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Abstract

Engineering challenges are increasingly complex, mired in characteristics Weber has described as the “social mess” – little agreement on problem definition, multiple interconnected problems, consequences difficult to imagine, let alone characterize, and riddled with ideological, political, and cultural conflict. Climate change looms large as an example of a social mess that engineers will need new capacities to effectively confront.

The capacities engineers need include many attributes long discussed within the Liberal Education/Engineering and Society Division of ASEE,and echoed in the NAE Engineer of 2020 report at the turn of this century: creativity, leadership, communication, lifelong learning, ethics, resiliency, and flexibility. There is increasing recognition that we additionally need to grow our capacity for holistic systems (or systems-of-systems) thinking, data-informed decision-making, transdisciplinarity and epistemic humility, critical understandings of power relations in organizations and society, and affective components of ethics, leadership and change agency, community-building, communications, and lifelong learning -- all in addition to specific technological breakthroughs and enabling technologies to reconfigure essential sociotechnical systems.

As we seek to instill these capacities, we are also confronting an engineering education ecosystem mired with obstacles and inequities. We need to build infrastructure that equitably resources learning, cultivates interest, and ensures flexible access across lines of race, class, gender, ability, and other categories, smoothing transition points from two-year colleges, military service, work in the trades, and life events that too often prevent individuals from pursuing engineering.

In the specific context of a project focused on preparing an engineering workforce that can realize roadway electrification and grid decarbonization for a sustainable transportation infrastructure, we developed a strategic agenda for instilling cross-disciplinary capacities and creating a smooth interconnected system of pathways through engineering.

This paper discusses the structural changes needed in our educational infrastructure and the curricular and pedagogical changes required for engineering formation to address sustainability challenges in the future. We identify areas for growth and a set of strategic actions in pre-college, undergraduate, graduate, and professional education to realize our vision for educating holistic and diverse engineers who are prepared to confront sustainability challenges.

Riley, D. M., & Clawson, R. A., & Maksimovic, D., & Myers, B. A., & Santiago, I., & Stites, N. A., & Taylor, J. L. (2021, July), Developing Engineering Formation Systems for Sustainability Paper presented at 2021 ASEE Virtual Annual Conference Content Access, Virtual Conference. 10.18260/1-2--36942

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