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Engagement in Practice: Adopting Service Learning and Community Engagement as a High Impact Teaching Strategy in Geotechnical Engineering

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Conference

2020 ASEE Virtual Annual Conference Content Access

Location

Virtual On line

Publication Date

June 22, 2020

Start Date

June 22, 2020

End Date

June 26, 2021

Conference Session

Community Engagement Division Technical Session 2

Tagged Division

Community Engagement Division

Page Count

7

DOI

10.18260/1-2--34532

Permanent URL

https://peer.asee.org/34532

Download Count

161

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Paper Authors

biography

Simon Thomas Ghanat P.E. The Citadel

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Dr. Simon Ghanat is an Associate Professor of Civil and Environmental Engineering at The Citadel (Charleston, S.C.). He received his Ph.D., M.S., and B.S. degrees in Civil and Environmental Engineering from Arizona State University. His research interests are in Engineering Education and Geotechnical Earthquake Engineering. He previously taught at Bucknell University and Arizona State University.

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William J. Davis P.E. The Citadel Orcid 16x16 orcid.org/0000-0002-3812-8654

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William J. Davis is D. Graham Copeland Professor of Civil Engineering and Dept. Head of Civil, Environmental and Construction Engineering at The Citadel in Charleston, SC. His academic experience includes transportation infrastructure planning and design, infrastructure resilience, traffic operations, highway safety, and geographic information systems. His research interests include constructing spatial databases for better management of transportation infrastructure, improving transportation design, operation, safety and construction, understanding long-term effects of urban development patterns, and advancing active living within the built environment for improved public health. He teaches courses in interchange design, transportation engineering, highway design. engineering management, geographic information systems, and land surveying. He has served in numerous leadership positions in ITE, ASCE and TRB.

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Dan D Nale PE The Citadel - Civil & Environmental Engineering

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Dan D. Nale is Professor of Practice in the Department of Civil and Environmental Engineering at The Citadel. Dan received a BS in Civil Engineering from The Citadel and both a MS and PhD in Civil Engineering from The University of South Carolina. Dan also earned a MBA from Mercer University. Dan worked in the aerospace industry for Grumman on the Space Shuttle before working for Gulfstream Aerospace for 35 years in Savannah, Georgia. At Gulfstream, Dan was responsible for Research and Development, Program Management, Engineering, Flight Operations & Flight Test. Dan Nale retired from Gulfstream in April of 2019 as the Senior VP of Programs, Engineering & Test. Dr. Nale has serve as an FAA Designated Engineer Representative for the FAA, is a professional engineering in the state of Georgia and holds a private pilot's license.

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Rebekah D Burke The Citadel

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Dr. Rebekah D. Burke is an Assistant Professor of Construction Engineering at The Citadel. Dr. Burke received her Doctoral degree from Arizona State University, and her BS from the University of Wyoming. She was previously the Director of Sustainable Design for Clark Nexsen, Architecture and Engineering, where she began her career as a structural engineer. She was a founding board member, and the first chair elect of the Hampton Roads Green Building Council.

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Abstract

In the spring of 2019, a community service learning project was incorporated into three sections of a senior-level Geotechnical Engineering Lab course at University “X” for the purpose of meeting community support and student educational goals. The project involved an evaluation of an earthen dam for a neighborhood located directly across the banks of an adjacent coastal river from campus of University “X”. The neighborhood surrounds a three-acre freshwater lake, impounded by an earthen dam, including an overflow structure and spillway, which outfalls directly into a tidal creek of the nearby river. The dam is 70-years old, showing signs of age, and as a result, has become a growing community concern specifically with regard to the long-term viability and sustainability of the lake, which functions as the central visual feature of the well-established neighborhood. Students worked closely with community leaders, conducted site visits, collected soil samples, performed laboratory analyses, evaluated results, and prepared a final report with recommendations for repair and improvement of the earthen dam. Students received technical support from seven local geotechnical professional engineers and the professor served as faculty advisor for the project. After receiving a final report in May 2019, the community has begun to use recommendations as a guide for systematically addressing repairs and improvements to the dam. This service learning project provided a great opportunity for academic enrichment and intellectual engagement where students applied their classroom knowledge to benefit the public in working to develop an engineering-based plan needed to solve a consequential real-world engineering problem in the local community. The project also challenged students to consider a broader range of technical and non-technical inputs, including meaningful engagement with community leaders. This paper will provide a summary of partnership development, motivation for the project, student learning activities, assessment of educational outcomes, lessons learned, identification of the crucial elements for successful use of service learning projects within an undergraduate engineering curriculum, conclusions and suggestions for future research.

Ghanat, S. T., & Davis, W. J., & Nale, D. D., & Burke, R. D. (2020, June), Engagement in Practice: Adopting Service Learning and Community Engagement as a High Impact Teaching Strategy in Geotechnical Engineering Paper presented at 2020 ASEE Virtual Annual Conference Content Access, Virtual On line . 10.18260/1-2--34532

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