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Development Of The Reinvigorating Engineering And Changing History (Reach) Program: A Cohort Experience For First Time Graduate Students

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Conference

2010 Annual Conference & Exposition

Location

Louisville, Kentucky

Publication Date

June 20, 2010

Start Date

June 20, 2010

End Date

June 23, 2010

ISSN

2153-5965

Conference Session

Methods, Techniques and New Programs in Graduate Education

Tagged Division

Graduate Studies

Page Count

9

Page Numbers

15.424.1 - 15.424.9

Permanent URL

https://peer.asee.org/16781

Download Count

20

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Paper Authors

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Monica Cox Purdue University

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Monica F. Cox, Ph.D., is an Assistant Professor in the School of Engineering Education at Purdue University. She obtained a B.S. in mathematics from Spelman College, a M.S. in industrial engineering from the University of Alabama, and a Ph.D. in Leadership and Policy Studies from Peabody College of Vanderbilt University. Teaching interests relate to the professional development of graduate engineering students and to leadership, policy, and change in science, technology, engineering, and mathematics education. Primary research projects explore the preparation of engineering doctoral students for careers in academia and industry and the development of engineering education assessment tools. She is a NSF Faculty Early Career (CAREER) award winner and is a recipient of a Presidential Early Career Award for Scientists and Engineers (PECASE).

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Cyndi Lynch Purdue University

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Cyndi Lynch is the Director of Fellowships and Graduate Student Professional Development in the Graduate School. Cyndi is a registered veterinary technician, focusing on animal behavior. She holds a bachelors degree in Animal Science and a Master of Science degree in Curriculum and Instruction from Purdue University. Research interests focus on doctoral student engagement in identified best practices, including mentoring and faculty-student relationships, orientations and transition courses, and doctoral student professional development. Her research explores the impact of best practices on the associated doctoral student learning outcomes and assessment of best practices. She instructs Purdue’s Preparing Future Faculty course and the Preparing Future Professionals course, designed to facilitate graduate students transition into faculty positions and non-academic positions respectively.

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Jiabin Zhu Purdue University, West Lafayette

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Jiabin Zhu is a PhD student in the School of Engineering Education at Purdue University. She obtained a B.S. in Physics from East China Normal University, a M.S. in Optics from Chinese Academy of Sciences, and a second M.S. in Biomedical Engineering from Purdue University. Her primary research interests relate to the professional development and mentoring of engineering graduate students. She is a student member of American Society for Engineering Education (ASEE).

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Phillip Dunston Purdue University

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Phillip S. Dunston, Ph.D., is an Associate Professor in the School of Civil Engineering at Purdue University. He obtained his degrees (B.S., M.S., and Ph.D.) in civil engineering from North Carolina State University and then joined the Civil and Environmental Engineering faculty at the University of Washington for a number of years before moving to Purdue. His primary research activities involve the application of Virtual Reality visualization technologies to design processes, construction tasks, and training. Concurrently, he has maintained participation in activities to stimulate the pipeline of minority students pursuing higher education in engineering. He is also a past NSF Faculty Early Career (CAREER) award winner.

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Audeen Fentiman Purdue University

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Audeen W. Fentiman is the Associate Dean of Engineering for Graduate Education and Interdisciplinary Programs at Purdue University. She is a Professor of Nuclear Engineering and holds courtesy appointments in the School of Engineering Education and the Division of Environmental and Ecological Engineering. Dr. Fentiman holds BS and MA degrees in Mathematics and MS and Ph.D. degrees in Nuclear Engineering, with the latter two degrees being from Ohio State University. Her teaching and research interests include radioactive waste management, engineering education, and environmental engineering risk assessment.

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Pamella Shaw Purdue University

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Demetra Evangelou Purdue University

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Demetra Evangelou is an Assistant Professor in Engineering Education at Purdue University, College of Engineering. Her research interests include early engineering and the effects of multiple influences on engineering thinking.

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

Development of the Reinvigorating Engineering and Changing History (REACH) Program: A Cohort Experience for First-Time Graduate Students

Abstract

In 2009, the Reinvigorating Engineering and Changing History (REACH) Scholars Program was developed at a Midwestern University to offer qualified Master’s and direct Ph.D. engineering students opportunities to explore multiple academic pathways and to work closely with their peers and with faculty to create a community of scholars who will be prepared broadly for careers across multiple domains. Informed from research, a central feature of the REACH Scholars Program is the use of a multiple apprenticeship model consisting of five features (intentionality; multiple relationships; collective responsibility; recognition; and respect, trust, and reciprocity) in which mentors will introduce Scholars to the engineering community and will provide them with a variety of perspectives to help them succeed as Scholars. The implementation of these five tenets enhances the professional development of Scholars via intentionally establishing multiple mentoring relationships within a collaborative learning environment. Other features of the program include Scholar participation in professional development workshops and seminars; engagement in research and grant writing groups; collaboration with existing campus programs to create sustainable communities across diverse graduate student populations; and the development of research skills. This paper provides an overview of the program and research questions that are being explored via the participation of students and mentors in the program.

Project Objectives and Plans The Reinvigorating Engineering and Changing History (REACH) Scholars Program offers qualified Master’s and direct Ph.D. engineering students opportunities to explore multiple academic pathways and to work closely with their peers, with alumni, and with faculty to create a community of scholars who will be prepared broadly for careers across multiple domains. Several aspects of this program have been informed by internal interviews with current graduate students, faculty, and administrators and by research identifying components that are most likely to promote student success within graduate engineering programs.

Findings from interviews with stakeholders provided much insight into challenges facing many domestic engineering students entering their first year of graduate school. First, many domestic graduate students have difficulty transitioning from undergraduate programs to graduate engineering programs. This is particularly true for students graduating from colleges and universities located in urban environments, for students graduating from minority-serving institutions or predominantly undergraduate institutions, or for students whose undergraduate academic programs were not as rigorous as those offered elsewhere. Second, many domestic students who enroll in a Master’s program are not offered funding during their first semester. Reasons for this include previously enrolled graduate students garnering prime research assistantships, higher funding priorities being given to engineering Ph.D. students, and a preference for many engineering faculty to work with international students whose technical skills may be more developed at their time of enrollment than the skills of domestic students. Finally, students reported the lack of community present for graduate engineering students when

Cox, M., & Lynch, C., & Zhu, J., & Dunston, P., & Fentiman, A., & Shaw, P., & Evangelou, D. (2010, June), Development Of The Reinvigorating Engineering And Changing History (Reach) Program: A Cohort Experience For First Time Graduate Students Paper presented at 2010 Annual Conference & Exposition, Louisville, Kentucky. https://peer.asee.org/16781

ASEE holds the copyright on this document. It may be read by the public free of charge. Authors may archive their work on personal websites or in institutional repositories with the following citation: © 2010 American Society for Engineering Education. Other scholars may excerpt or quote from these materials with the same citation. When excerpting or quoting from Conference Proceedings, authors should, in addition to noting the ASEE copyright, list all the original authors and their institutions and name the host city of the conference. - Last updated April 1, 2015