June 26, 2011
June 26, 2011
June 29, 2011
Minorities in Engineering
22.754.1 - 22.754.15
Innovative Retention and Development Programs for Undergraduate Minority Engineering Students (including Summer Bridge Programs) GOLDSHIRT TRANSITIONAL PROGRAM: FIRST-YEAR RESULTS AND LESSONS LEARNED ON CREATING ENGINEERING CAPACITY AND EXPANDING DIVERSITYWomen and underrepresented minority students pursue engineering degrees at disproportionatelylower rates as compared to the majority male population. One reason for the low participationrate among underrepresented minorities is that a high proportion of them lack adequatepreparation coming out of high school to enter university level engineering programs. To addressthis preparation gap, the GoldShirt engineering program at the University XXX seeks to providestudents the opportunity to prepare academically to enter engineering and to persist to graduationand beyond.The University XXX has established aggressive goals to increase the number and percentage ofunderrepresented and women students enrolling in and graduating from the College ofEngineering and Applied Science. The GoldShirt program is a key strategy for achieving thesebold goals. Supported in part by the National Science Foundation, the GoldShirt programprovides a performance-enhancing preparatory year for under-prepared students directlyadmitted to the engineering college. This GoldShirt year includes coursework in mathematics,physics, chemistry and the humanities to prepare students to enter the regular engineeringcurriculum in their second year of college. Most GoldShirt students live together in a living andlearning environment focused on engineering excellence.The pilot cohort (cohort #1) entered the program in fall 2009 with 16 students, of whom 15returned for the fall 2010 semester. This cohort achieved strong academic success in their firstyear. Based on the academic success of the first cohort, the university doubled the GoldShirtprogram’s capacity to 32 students in the fall 2010 (cohort #2). Cohort #2 consists of 24underrepresented minority students, 6 female students, 20 first generation college students and 8English language learners. Students in cohort #1 serve as mentors for the entering students incohort #2.The program is assessed based on the students’ academic performance and retention and theirfeedback on a variety of topics including their perceived preparedness in key courses (math,science, engineering, humanities and writing), sense of community within the program andcollege, and their intention to graduate and pursue a career in engineering.This paper examines and reports on the performance of the GoldShirt program. The paperexamines the factors that influenced students to join and persist in the program, and how thestudents performed academically both in the GoldShirt year and into the first year of the regularengineering curriculum. The paper also examines the role of support services, the residential lifeprogram and the new peer mentoring program in the students’ progress.
Ennis, T. D., & Milford, J. B., & Sullivan, J. F., & Myers, B. A., & Knight, D. (2011, June), GoldShirt Transitional Program: First-Year Results and Lessons Learned on Creating Engineering Capacity and Expanding Diversity Paper presented at 2011 ASEE Annual Conference & Exposition, Vancouver, BC. https://peer.asee.org/18035
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