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Educating International Engineers ... A Midwestern Us University Experience

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1999 Annual Conference


Charlotte, North Carolina

Publication Date

June 20, 1999

Start Date

June 20, 1999

End Date

June 23, 1999



Page Count


Page Numbers

4.214.1 - 4.214.8

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Lawrence B. Korta

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

Session 1360

Educating International Engineers…. A Midwestern US University Experience

Lawrence B. Korta Milwaukee School of Engineering


Since its inauguration in 1991, Milwaukee School of Engineering has annually offered a summer “short course” on engineering and engineering management practices to selected European and Asian engineering students. This program is sponsored by Rockwell Automation, a major business unit of Rockwell, International and is conducted in collaboration Czech Technical University, in Prague, Czech Republic. The 1998 program included 47 participants from sixteen universities located in eight different countries.

This paper describes the curricular content of the program and its development from the initial 1991 offering limited to Czech and Slovak students. Special note is made of the unique “live” industry sponsored multinational team engineering project which has become the cornerstone of the program and which presents some interesting challenges not unlike those encountered in similar situations in industry.

The paper concludes with some comparisons of this industry sponsored “short course” to the more conventional international exchange programs also offered by Milwaukee School of Engineering

Background…initial program

In 1991, representatives of Rockwell Automation (then better known as Allen-Bradley) approached MSOE with a challenge: develop a summer engineering program which would be attractive to graduate level Eastern European engineering students; specifically for engineering students in what was then Czechoslovakia The program was to be used as a way to bring “the best and brightest” engineering students to the US and to Rockwell, anticipating a kind of “internship” relationship in which the students learn about the host company while the company has an opportunity to observe the participants. Participants were to be selected on the basis of their command of the English language and being enrolled in a field of study relevant to the work of Allen-Bradley (Rockwell)….this generally meant the students were majoring in computer or electrical engineering.

Rockwell was not the only participant interested in internationalization, however. At that same time, Milwaukee School of Engineering was recognizing that the successful engineering graduate needed an awareness of the global community in which he or she would inevitably practice the profession of engineering. The approximately 90 year history of active collaboration between MSOE and Allen-Bradley was to take an international turn.

Korta, L. B. (1999, June), Educating International Engineers ... A Midwestern Us University Experience Paper presented at 1999 Annual Conference, Charlotte, North Carolina.

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