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Fuse: Furthering The Underrepresented In Science And Engineering

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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

Diversity: Women and Minorities in Engineering Technology

Page Count


Page Numbers

9.631.1 - 9.631.8



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Paper Authors

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Carryn Bellomo

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Korinne Caruso

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Rafic Bachnak

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

Session 1148

FUSE: Furthering the Underrepresented in Science and Engineering

Rafic Bachnak, Carryn Bellomo, and Korinne Caruso Department of Computing and Mathematical Sciences Texas A&M University-Corpus Christi


A new program that improves the recruitment of underrepresented students has been recently implemented at Texas A&M-Corpus Christi. The program is designed to attract juniors in high schools to participate in two-week summer workshops and a follow-up science and technology exhibit. The workshops introduce students to college life, involve them in hands-on activities, and encourage them to pursue science and engineering careers. This paper presents the evaluation results of summer 2003 workshops.


Texas A&M-Corpus Christi (A&M-CC) is a comprehensive urban university located on the South Texas Gulf Coast. The University is committed to identifying, recruiting, and retaining students who have high potential for academic success, especially those from groups who have been historically underrepresented in higher education and science. The Hispanic population of the University (37%) lags far behind that of the surrounding areas (69%). It is, therefore, imperative that A&M-CC makes strong efforts to recruit and retain its Hispanic population despite the environmental odds of poverty, and inadequate educational preparation.

The current US workforce is comprised of 77% White, 4% Asian, and 19% Minority. According to the Bureau of Labor Statistics and the National Science Foundation, however, among engineering professionals, 88% are White, 6% are Asian, and only 6% are minority1. To improve minority representation in engineering and engineering technology programs, institutions of higher education may use a number of approaches, such as the increase of visibility of the engineering profession, mentoring students, and academic support2. Strategies to recruit and retain students include hands-on approaches3, 4, field trips5, 6, summer workshops7, and software training programs8. This paper describes a project, Furthering the Underrepresented in Science and Engineering (FUSE), that uses all these methods to attract underrepresented students to science and engineering through a program that includes presentations at high schools, invited speakers, field trips, hands-on laboratory activities, and science and technology exhibits9. Specifically, the program involves attracting 11th grade students to attend a two-week Science and Technology workshop. The workshop is designed to introduce students to job opportunities in the food industry and agriculture, expose them to college life, involve them in hands-on activities, and encourage them to pursue science and engineering

Proceedings of the 2004 American Society for Engineering Education Annual Conference & Exposition Copyright 2004, American Society for Engineering Education

Bellomo, C., & Caruso, K., & Bachnak, R. (2004, June), Fuse: Furthering The Underrepresented In Science And Engineering Paper presented at 2004 Annual Conference, Salt Lake City, Utah. 10.18260/1-2--13998

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