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Enabling The U.S. Engineering Workforce To Perform: Developing Financial Sustainability To Ensure High Quality In Professional Graduate Engineering Education

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2004 Annual Conference


Salt Lake City, Utah

Publication Date

June 20, 2004

Start Date

June 20, 2004

End Date

June 23, 2004



Conference Session

Professional Graduate Education & Industry

Page Count


Page Numbers

9.526.1 - 9.526.5

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Paper Authors

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Dennis Depew

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

Session 1455 2004 ASEE – Salt Lake City Graduate Studies Division

Invited Panel Session: Professional Graduate Engineering Education Relevant to the Needs of Industry

Invited Panel Paper #3


Enabling the U.S. Engineering Workforce to Perform: Developing Financial Sustainability to Ensure High-Quality in Professional Graduate Engineering Education D. R. Depew, 1 A. L. McHenry, 2 S. J. Tricamo, 3 D. H. Sebastian, 3 J. M. Snellenberger,4 D. H. Quick,4 I. T. Davis,5 J. P. Tidwell,6 D. D. Dunlap, 7 D. A. Keating, 8 T. G. Stanford 8

Purdue University 1/Arizona State University East 2/New Jersey Institute of Technology 3 Rolls-Royce Corporation 4 / Raytheon Missiles 5/ The Boeing Company 6 Western Carolina University 7 /University of South Carolina 8


This is the third paper in the panel session of the National Collaborative Task Force for reform of professionally oriented engineering graduate education to make it more relevant to the needs of industry to ensure a strong U.S. engineering workforce for competitiveness. This paper addresses the need for new funding mechanisms to initiate, develop, and sustain high-quality professional graduate education both at comprehensive universities and at research universities across the nation. In today’s economy of tight university budgets, it is unrealistic to think that universities can initiate and sustain high-quality professional graduate programs without external support. Whereas scientific research is the primary focus at many schools of engineering across the country, and is supported directly by federal funding, it is now evident that professional graduate education does not fit this model of funding. This paper begins the exploration of new funding schemes in collaboration with industry and government support to sustain the increasing momentum for the advancement of professional education in engineering practice and technology leadership for 21st century universities.

Funding Models for Education

The funding model for graduate education in public universities is usually different from funding model for undergraduate education. Most states usually reimburse public universities for each undergraduate student served through some formula, which can vary from discipline to discipline. For example it is more costly to educate students in fields of engineering and technology, medical science, and certain areas of physical and life sciences compared to some liberal arts fields. Also, in addition to the states support for undergraduate majors, universities charge students tuition and other fees to cover the costs of instructional delivery.

Depew, D. (2004, June), Enabling The U.S. Engineering Workforce To Perform: Developing Financial Sustainability To Ensure High Quality In Professional Graduate Engineering Education Paper presented at 2004 Annual Conference, Salt Lake City, Utah.

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