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Differences in Leadership and Project Based Learning Outcomes in Developed and Developing Countries

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2015 ASEE International Forum


Seattle, Washington

Publication Date

June 14, 2015

Start Date

June 14, 2015

End Date

June 14, 2015

Conference Session

Concurrent Paper Tracks - Session II

Tagged Topic

International Forum

Page Count


Page Numbers

19.10.1 - 19.10.8



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Paper Authors


Andrew Thomas Conley Michigan Technological University

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Andrew is studying mechanical engineering, is minoring in aerospace engineering, and is completing the Global Technological Leadership certificate at Michigan Technological University. Andrew has significant project experience as the project manager of the Aerospace Enterprise—one of Michigan Tech’s largest enterprises—and the Oculus-ASR project—a satellite project sponsored by the US Air Force Research Lab for university students to design, build, test, and launch a functioning satellite to low-earth orbit. In addition to his work with the Aerospace Enterprise, Andrew is also the president (vice president 2013-2014) of the Michigan Tech chapter of the Blue Key National Honor Society, the organization responsible for planning Winter Carnival, Michigan Tech’s largest annual celebration. Andrew has led these two diverse groups at Michigan Tech for the past year and will continue to focus on the educational and professional development value of each.
In 2014, as part of the Pavlis Institute for Global Technological Leadership, Andrew traveled to Malta where he led a research effort to determine the role of the Maltese islands, specifically Gozo, in the Allied victory during World War II. Andrew also helped his fellow students prepare hands-on science and engineering demonstrations for elementary students in the country's poorer regions.

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Robert O. Warrington Jr. Michigan Technological University

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Robert O. Warrington is currently Director of the Institute for Leadership and Innovation, which houses the highly interdisciplinary and innovative Enterprise program, the High School Enterprise program and the Pavlis Institute for Global Technological Leadership at Michigan Technological University. Dr. Warrington was Dean of the College of Engineering from 1996 to 2007 and was the founder and Director of the Institute for Micromanufacturing at Louisiana Tech University. Before joining Michigan Tech in 1996, he received his BS degree in Aerospace Engineering from Virginia Polytechnic Institute, his MS in Mechanical Engineering from the University of Texas at El Paso and his PhD in Mechanical Engineering from Montana State University. Dr. Warrington served in the US Army for two years and on the faculty at Montana State University for eight years. He was the head of the Mechanical and Industrial Engineering Department at Louisiana Tech University for 11 years, and was the Director of the Institute for Micromanufacturing from 1991-1996. Dr. Warrington was a founding advisory board member for the ASME Nanotechnology Institute. He is past VP for Education, Centers Sector of ASME. He led the ASME Vision 2030 study for the future of mechanical engineering education. He was a member of the Board of Directors for ABET after serving a number of years as a program evaluator, member of the Engineering Accreditation Council and the Executive Committee of the EAC. Dr. Warrington is chair of the Education Committee for the Pan American Federation of Engineering Societies (UPADI). Dr. Warrington is a Fellow of ASME and AAAS and is a member of the Pan American Academy of Engineering. He was an associate editor (now emeritus) for the ASME/IEEE Journal of Microelectromechanical Systems and has over 150 technical publications and numerous presentations (35 invited), and 49 research grants from foundations, government and industry. Dr. Warrington is the founder of the Commercialization of Microsystems Conferences, is a past founding president of MANCEF and currently is a member of the executive board for MANCEF. Dr. Warrington was an Associate Director for the Center for Wireless Integrated Microsystems, an NSF Engineering Research Center (2000-10). Dr. Warrington's research interests include MEMS (particularly micro heat transfer and fluid flow), micromanufacturing, energy scavenging at the microscale, and micromechanical machining processes.

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Differences in Leadership and Project Based Learning Outcomes in Developed andUndeveloped CountriesAndrew T. ConleyMichigan Technological University organized the Pavlis Institute for Global TechnologicalLeadership with the help of alumnus Frank Pavlis in 2005 to teach ambitious students the cultureand leadership skills necessary for being successful in a globalized economy. The Institute wasfounded on the principle of educating future leaders through an in-depth study of leadership,discussions on cultural influences, and culminating with an immersive international leadershipexperience.The definition of leadership has been debated for many years and frequently changes basedworld events, social movements, and economic developments. It is well-accepted that leadershipis multi-faceted: formed by many different traits made evident in various situations. Betweenproject management, vision, cultural awareness, communication, respect, and inspiration, leadersare shaped by their environment and their responsibilities.For students travelling abroad to partake in leadership activities the environment in whichleadership is practiced has important effects on the type of skills developed. Many would agreethat tutoring students in a different language, planning an event, building a water filtrationsystem, or building a school house are all examples in which leadership skills in a broad senseare developed; however, differences in the political background, economic state, and many otherfactors influence the type of skills which receive the most attention.This is no different for students in the Pavlis Institute. While most students travel to developingregions in West Africa or southern India, some students select developed countries such asArgentina or Malta. While the Institute focuses on leadership development in a general sense,individuals have significantly different experiences and learning outcomes depending on theregion’s development.This paper will discuss the fundamental differences in learning outcomes between internationalundergraduate project work in developed and developing countries. Using Michigan Tech’sPavlis Institute as the foundation, a clear distinction between aspects of leadership experiencedwill be drawn and the benefits of each will be discussed. Regardless of the location orenvironment, international project-work provides students an invaluable opportunity to developcharacter and solidify their foundation of leadership skills.

Conley, A. T., & Warrington, R. O. (2015, June), Differences in Leadership and Project Based Learning Outcomes in Developed and Developing Countries Paper presented at 2015 ASEE International Forum, Seattle, Washington. 10.18260/1-2--17133

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