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Lack Of Gender Diversity? Change Your Recruiting Tactics

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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

Engineering Technology Poster Session

Page Count


Page Numbers

8.804.1 - 8.804.6



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Paper Authors

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Michael Holcombe

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

Session 1547


Michael L Holcombe Purdue University


Gender diversity typically is considered when institutions of higher learning are faced with declining enrollments. It is well known that the percentage of women in engineering technology is quite low. Some of the recruiting techniques used to attract women to engineering technology can be modified to be more effective in achieving their purpose.

Women make up 54% of the present day college/university population on campuses where engineering technology is offered. [1] The recruiting techniques being used are not effective in producing an increase in the percentage of the women students in engineering and engineering technology. To paraphrase an old quote – “one size does not fit all.”

This paper is a follow-up to the paper that was presented at the Illinois/Indiana sectional conference in April, 2002. [2] That paper was based on a survey designed to identify the primary motivators leading women to choose engineering/engineering technology. The survey identified several salient points in the decision making process for women students. The foremost was the attitude of the home environment toward education. Another significant factor was the effect of role models and the encouragement towards a technology degree. The student’s success in math and science in high school was another significant factor. A more in-depth and thorough review of the data collected is offered here.

The need to address the perceptions of engineering technology held by the women candidates, their peers, and others that have great influence on their lives is visited. Factors that deserve consideration are the what, when and how to recruit women for engineering technology. Examples of programs and procedures that are in place at various schools are cited along with some creative ideas for consideration. The need for establishing an early awareness of the field and the stereotyping that must be overcome is addressed.

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

Holcombe, M. (2003, June), Lack Of Gender Diversity? Change Your Recruiting Tactics Paper presented at 2003 Annual Conference, Nashville, Tennessee. 10.18260/1-2--11677

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