June 15, 2019
June 15, 2019
June 19, 2019
Minorities in Engineering
In 2018, the National Academies of Science, Engineering, and Medicine released a report entitled, Minority Serving Institutions: America’s Underutilized Resource for Strengthening the STEM Workforce. The report highlighted the various academic, economic, and social benefits linked to Minority Serving Institutions (MSIs) and spotlighted their impact on their respective institutional and community stakeholders. The report affirmed that MSIs have not been adequately researched or utilized to increase future research and that MSIs should be prioritized. Historically Black Colleges and Universities (HBCUs), one of two MSI types that are historically and culturally defined, were researched and analyzed as a part of the report. Defined by federal law (20 USC § 1061) an HBCU is a “college or university that was established prior to 1964, whose principal mission was, and is, the education of Black Americans.”
While only accounting for 3% of all post-secondary institutions in the U.S., HBCUs graduate 17% of all Black students. Within science, technology, engineering, and mathematics (STEM), 40% of Black students pursuing graduate degrees attended HBCUs for undergraduate study. Between 2002 and 2011, HBCUs saw year-over-year increases for the number of Blacks who went on to successfully complete doctorate degrees in science and engineering, with top producers from North Carolina A&T University, Florida A&M University, and Morgan State University. This is particularly important when considering that of the 631 ABET (Accreditation Board for Engineering and Technology) accredited institutions only 15 are HBCUs as of 2016.
Prior research and statistics have documented the significant role HBCUs play in the production of Black engineers; however, this report emphatically states that these institutions are not utilized at the level necessary for the U.S. to stay competitive within the STEM workforce. Therefore, this current study consists of a rigorous document analysis to summarize information from the report that is directly and/or indirectly connected to engineering education at HBCUs including, but not limited to, background of authors, the institutional selection process, review of literature cited, and recommendations. Results found that First, there is a need for increased efforts to advance and expand quantitative research related to the role of HBCUs in graduating Black engineers including dual engineering programs with PWIs. Second, an analysis of research and practice-based funding allocations for engineering at HBCUs should be conducted.
Fletcher, T. L., & Fletcher, T. L., & Williams, J. L., & Benedict, B. S., & Boyd, B. N., & Watkins, K. (2019, June), Minority Serving Institutions: America's Underutilized Resource for Strengthening the STEM Workforce Report – Implications for Historically Black Colleges and Universities (HBCUs) Paper presented at 2019 ASEE Annual Conference & Exposition , Tampa, Florida. https://peer.asee.org/33114
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