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Emerging Role of 2-year Hispanic-serving Institutions (HSIs) in Advanced Technological Education (ATE): Challenges, Opportunities, and Impacts for Growing the United States Technical Workforce

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2020 ASEE Virtual Annual Conference Content Access


Virtual On line

Publication Date

June 22, 2020

Start Date

June 22, 2020

End Date

June 26, 2021

Conference Session

2-Year College Division: Workforce Pathways and ATE

Tagged Division

Two-Year College

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Paper Authors


Cynthia Kay Pickering Science Foundation Arizona Center for STEM at Arizona State University Orcid 16x16

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Cynthia Pickering is a retired electrical engineer with 35 years industry experience and technical leadership in software development, artificial intelligence, information technology architecture/engineering, and collaboration systems research.

In September 2015, she joined Science Foundation Arizona (SFAz) to lead the Girls in STEM initiative and translate her passion for STEM into opportunities that will attract, inspire and retain more girls in STEM to make it the new norm. She has also architected SFAz's enhanced Community College STEM Pathways Guide that has received the national STEMx seal of approval for STEM tools. She integrated the STEM Pathways Guide with the KickStarter processes for improving competitive proposal writing of Community College Hispanic Serving Institutions.

Throughout her career, Ms. Pickering has written robotics software, diagnostic expert systems for space station, manufacturing equipment models, and architected complex IT systems for global collaboration that included engagement analytics. She holds a US Patent # 7904323, Multi-Team Immersive Integrated Collaboration Workspace awarded 3/8/2011. She also has twenty-five peer-reviewed publications.

She has recently been accepted to the Human Social Dimensions PhD program in Arizona State University's School for the Future of Innovation and Technology in Society (beginning Fall 2020).

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Elaine L. Craft Florence-Darlington Technical College

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Elaine L. Craft (Florence-Darlington Technical College, Florence, SC-retired) holds a baccalaureate degree in chemical engineering from the University of Mississippi and a MBA from the University of South Carolina with additional graduate studies in mathematics at Francis Marion University. Her experience includes working as an engineer in industry as well as teaching and administration at community college and state levels. She served as Director of the South Carolina Advanced Technological (SC ATE) Center of Excellence from 1994-2017. She continues to lead initiatives and grant-funded projects to develop educational leadership and increase the quantity, quality and diversity of highly skilled technicians to support the American economy. She currently serves as Principal Investigator, Mentor-Connect: Leadership Development and Outreach for ATE-2 and -3; and, Principal Investigator, Collaborative Research-HSI ATE Hub-Diversifying the ATE Program with Hispanic Serving Institutions Using Culturally Inclusive Mentoring and ATE Resources. The SC ATE Center is widely known for innovative initiatives impacting advanced technological education as well as developing and broadly sharing successful educational models and practices in technician education, with a particular emphasis on faculty development, the first year of study for success in engineering and technology majors, and mentoring educators nationally. Craft is President of Elaine L. Craft Educational Consulting, L.L.C.

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Caroline VanIngen-Dunn Arizona State University

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Caroline VanIngen-Dunn is Director of the Science Foundation Arizona Center for STEM at Arizona State University, providing services for Maximizing the Educational and Economic Impact of STEM. VanIngen-Dunn is the inspiration behind the programs and resources designed to assist community colleges, particularly rural and Hispanic Serving Institutions (HSIs), through a rigorous process leading to improvements in their capacity building, infrastructure, and proposal development efforts that support and better serve students in their STEM education and career pathways pursuits.

VanIngen-Dunn has built her career on years of experience as engineer and project manager in human crashworthiness and safety design, development and testing, working for contractors in commuter rail, aerospace and defense industries.

VanIngen-Dunn has an MS degree in Mechanical Engineering from Stanford University and a BSE degree in Biomedical Engineering from the University of Iowa. She serves on the University of Iowa's College of Engineering Advisory Board, and the YWCA Metropolitan Phoenix Board of Directors.

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Anna Tanguma- Gallegos Arizona State University

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Anna Tanguma-Gallegos brings 10 years of STEM strategic planning and program management experience in higher education environments and initiatives. Anna has a history of promoting and increasing enrollment in the programs she manages, as well as developing collaborative relationships with corporate and community members. Anna has provided successful direction to federally funded programs within the higher education field. Anna spearheaded the relationship with Health Pathways Grossmont-Cuyamaca Community College District, and University of California-San Diego Moore’s Cancer Center to develop their first-ever nursing internship summer program and offering a value-added learning experience for the students.

In her role at Science Foundation Arizona (SFAz), Anna is working with Hispanic Serving Community Colleges as part of the National Science Foundation (NSF)-funded KickStarter Program. The goal of KickStarter is to enhance the enrollment of Latino students in STEM fields by helping colleges with their STEM planning and maximizing the competitiveness of their federal grant proposals to fund those plans. As a Program Officer for the Community College STEM Pathways Initiative, Anna works closely with all community college teams, guides them through the KickStarter process, and connects them to community and industry partners.

Anna brings a unique skillset to this position with Bachelor’s and Master’s degrees in Behavioral Science/Educational Counseling from National University; CA. Anna is pursuing her Ph.D. in Psychology with an Emphasis on Integrating Technology Learning. Prior to SFAz, Anna was the Manager of Alumni & Community Relations for National University. Anna developed partnerships within the community colleges and non-profit industry throughout San Diego and Los Angeles for National University.

Assemblywoman Lorena Gonzalez and State Senator Ben Hueso recently recognized Anna for her work in the MANA De San Diego Latina Success Leadership Program.

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Emery DeWitt Florence-Darlington Technical College

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Project Manager and Co-PI for Mentor-Connect, an outreach initiative for the South Carolina Advanced Technological Education (SC ATE) Center of Excellence, which is funded by NSF and housed at Florence-Darlington Technical College in Florence, SC. I started as Project Manager for another FDTC NSF-funded project (the National Resource Center) in March 2016 and became Project Manager for Mentor-Connect In April 2018. Prior to my Project Manager positions, I was Program Coordinator for the FDTC Educational Foundation for six years. I received my Bachelor of Arts in Public Relations and Sociology from Clemson University.

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To remain competitive in the global economy and meet the country’s anticipated shortage of 5 million technically credentialed workers, the United States must produce skilled technicians with a high level of domain-specific technical knowledge. Community colleges are essential to solving the skilled technician workforce supply problem because many skilled technical jobs do not require a bachelor’s degree for entry but do require technical credentials. According to federal data, half the students earning a certificate in 2016-17 received their credentials from community colleges. Despite declining community college enrollments, Hispanic student enrollment at community colleges nearly doubled between 2001 and 2017, increasing by 98% to reach 25% of the overall 2017 enrollment. However, Hispanics are currently underrepresented in STEM Job clusters, at 7% (1.2M) of employed adults in STEM jobs (17.3M) as compared to 16% (21M) of all employed adults (131M), where a substantial share (35%) of this STEM workforce does not have a bachelor’s degree. Moreover, the current Hispanic composition of the STEM workforce (7%) does not reflect the current (18%, 62M) or future (predicted at 28%, 111.2M) Hispanic population of the United States.

Looking to the future, the United States can help address underrepresentation in the STEM workforce, by leveraging the more than 20 million young people of color, including Hispanic youth, who have the potential to enter STEM fields and close the current gaps. Given the nation’s urgent need for a well-trained, domestic STEM-capable workforce, Hispanic Serving Institutions (HSIs) are essential points of access; 46% of all HSIs are 2-year colleges. The goal of the HSI Advanced Technological Education (ATE) Hub is to build capacity and leadership at 2-year HSIs for developing competitive ATE proposals to NSF to prepare technicians in advanced technologies that drive the American economy.

Pickering, C. K., & Craft, E. L., & VanIngen-Dunn, C., & Gallegos, A. T., & DeWitt, E. (2020, June), Emerging Role of 2-year Hispanic-serving Institutions (HSIs) in Advanced Technological Education (ATE): Challenges, Opportunities, and Impacts for Growing the United States Technical Workforce Paper presented at 2020 ASEE Virtual Annual Conference Content Access, Virtual On line . 10.18260/1-2--34523

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