June 26, 2011
June 26, 2011
June 29, 2011
Entrepreneurship & Engineering Innovation
22.845.1 - 22.845.11
Incorporating Entrepreneurship into Mechanical Engineering Automotive Courses: Two Case StudiesAbstractEngineering programs are often criticized for focusing solely on technical educationwhile ignoring industry and business needs. In response, many programs have addeddedicated courses in leadership or entrepreneurship into the curriculum. The problemwith this approach is that, often, students do not find that it is connected to their studies ina meaningful way. Additionally, in many programs this sort of class is offered as anelective; thus it reaches a relatively small audience.A more effective approach is to try and incorporate entrepreneurship ideas directly intoexisting classes. Engineering professors often find it difficult to make room in the coursesyllabus for entrepreneurship education. Further, many faculty have not been exposed tothe “entrepreneurship mindset” and thus do not feel prepared to broach the subject inclass. Kettering University has attempted to solve this problem by offering a series ofentrepreneurship classes over the course of a term to faculty from all disciplines anddepartments. Armed with their newfound confidence and knowledge, these faculty arethen expected to incorporate entrepreneurship concepts and projects into existing courses.This paper focuses on the incorporation of entrepreneurship ideas and assignments intotwo automotive courses offered in the Mechanical Engineering department. Thesuccesses and failures of the approaches will be discussed. Examples will be given toillustrate how these ideas have been used to enhance the undergraduate learningexperience in the classroom setting at Kettering University. Since the university has astrong automotive focus, many of the examples cited pertain to that industry, but theconcepts can easily applied to other fields such as aerospace, power production, andalternative energy.In addition to enhancing undergraduate education, there are significant other benefits tothis approach. For students, these ideas can be much more engaging than traditionalclassroom material and the exposure to the ideas of the “entrepreneurial mindset” helpsto prepare them for careers in the fast paced society in which we live.
Davis, G. W., & Hoff, C. J., & Riffe, W. J. (2011, June), Incorporating Entrepreneurship into Mechanical Engineering Automotive Courses: Two Case Studies Paper presented at 2011 ASEE Annual Conference & Exposition, Vancouver, BC. https://peer.asee.org/18126
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