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Engineering Ambassadors In The High School Classroom

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2003 Annual Conference


Nashville, Tennessee

Publication Date

June 22, 2003

Start Date

June 22, 2003

End Date

June 25, 2003



Conference Session

K-12 Outreach Initiatives

Page Count


Page Numbers

8.491.1 - 8.491.7



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Paper Authors

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Robert Vieth

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Kazem Kazerounian

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

Paper # 2003-1125

Engineering Ambassadors in the High School Classroom

Robert F. Vieth, Kazem Kazerounian

School of Engineering University of Connecticut Storrs, CT 06269-3222


Students and faculty within the School of Engineering and the Neag School of Education at the University of Connecticut have initiated a program, with the support of the National Science Foundation, to introduce core engineering concepts to select high school students in the State of Connecticut. This program, entitled the Galileo Project, is an extension of the university’s already- successful da Vinci Project, now entering its fourth year. This paper describes the goals and objectives of the program and documents progress made during the first nine months.


The University of Connecticut School of Engineering, in partnership with the UCONN Neag School of Education, selected local school districts, the Greater Hartford Academy for Math and Science, and local industry, received an award from the National Science Foundation’s Graduate Teaching Fellows in K-12 Education (GK-12) Program1 to develop and implement an innovative, comprehensive, affordable, and accessible program to integrate engineering into the secondary school curriculum. This program, called the “Galileo Project” seeks to: 1) make college engineering programs accessible to the widest possible range of students, including those from underrepresented groups, 2) instill a strong sense of commitment to and appreciation for education among participating Fellows, and 3) expose teachers to the tremendous challenges, rewards and opportunities that are implicit in engineering education and practice. The proposed program builds upon years of highly successful outreach activities to K-12 teachers and students undertaken by UCONN.

History of Commitment to Engineering Education

UCONN is one of over 75 institutions receiving funding under the three-year-old NSF GK-12 program to promote and improve education in science, math and engineering. The UCONN program, colloquially entitled The Galileo Project, is an outgrowth and extension of a program established by the School of Engineering in 1999 and now entering its fourth year of operation. That program, called the da Vinci Project was designed to introduce math and science teachers to core engineering concepts. By allowing these teachers to work side-by-side with engineers in academia and industry, they would become empowered to bring engineering into the classroom, to discuss engineering as a career option, and act as a guide for those students interested in engineering. It was hoped that the term, 'engineering' would enter the lexicon of secondary

“Proceedings of the 2003 American Society for Engineering Education Annual Conference and Exposition Copyright ©2003, American Society for Engineering Education”

Vieth, R., & Kazerounian, K. (2003, June), Engineering Ambassadors In The High School Classroom Paper presented at 2003 Annual Conference, Nashville, Tennessee. 10.18260/1-2--11447

ASEE holds the copyright on this document. It may be read by the public free of charge. Authors may archive their work on personal websites or in institutional repositories with the following citation: © 2003 American Society for Engineering Education. Other scholars may excerpt or quote from these materials with the same citation. When excerpting or quoting from Conference Proceedings, authors should, in addition to noting the ASEE copyright, list all the original authors and their institutions and name the host city of the conference. - Last updated April 1, 2015