Salt Lake City, Utah
June 23, 2018
June 23, 2018
July 27, 2018
Entrepreneurship & Engineering Innovation
A recent survey of global innovation-based competitiveness ranked the US 6th overall across 40 countries in innovation-based competitiveness. In fact, the US is falling behind, ranking last in year-to-year improvement in innovation and competitiveness. To improve on this, the US must produce more STEM graduates capable of driving innovation. Many mid-sized universities in rural and low-technology states lack a culture or ecosystem that fosters innovation. To grow into thriving centers of technological innovation, these states must change their culture. STEM students –particularly engineering students – need a background in innovation processes, as well as real-world connections and experiences, to help develop their innovation instincts.
The College of Engineering (COE) in collaboration with the -- College of Business at the University of -- is addressing these needs by developing an applied innovation curriculum through a multi-discipline, multi-college academic innovation track. Starting as freshmen, engineering students will be partnered with business students to focus on innovation principles and processes, while incorporating classroom content with hands-on experiences and internships to focus on new product development. Students from both colleges learn why innovation matters, how to work together to create innovation, and how to solve problems with market demand. To expand this change to an innovation climate, the University will partner with regional engineering and technology industries in a manner that can serve as a model for other institutions. The COE will use a combination of qualitative and quantitative data to evaluate and iteratively improve the program with the overall objective of attracting, retaining, and graduating students who are capable of innovating. These students will enter the workforce better prepared to improve the economic health and competitiveness of the US.
This paper focuses on the strategy, design and development of this program, lessons learned, and plans for the future.
Schubert, K. D., & Massey, L. B., & Johnson, C. E. (2018, June), Integrating an Innovation Concentration into the Engineering Curriculum Paper presented at 2018 ASEE Annual Conference & Exposition , Salt Lake City, Utah. https://peer.asee.org/30678
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