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Nanotechnology Fellows Program: Integrating Interdisciplinary Education, Professional Development, and Outreach

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2018 ASEE Annual Conference & Exposition


Salt Lake City, Utah

Publication Date

June 23, 2018

Start Date

June 23, 2018

End Date

July 27, 2018

Conference Session

Multidisciplinary Engineering Programs

Tagged Division

Multidisciplinary Engineering

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Saniya Leblanc George Washington University

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Dr. Saniya LeBlanc obtained a PhD in mechanical engineering with a minor in materials science at Stanford University. She earned her BS from Georgia Institute of Technology and a Master's of Philosophy in Engineering from Cambridge University as a Churchill Scholar. With a strong commitment to educational equity, she served in Teach For America as a high school math and physics teacher in Washington, D.C., and she was co-founder of the American Society for Engineering Education's Stanford chapter. Dr. LeBlanc was previously a research scientist at a startup company, where she created research, development, and manufacturing characterization solutions for thermoelectric technologies and evaluated the potential of new power generation materials. Dr. LeBlanc's research goal is to use advanced materials and manufacturing techniques to create energy technology solutions. She uses scalable manufacturing techniques to create nanostructured materials for energy and thermal management applications and creates techno-economic models for emerging energy technologies.

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Ekundayo Shittu George Washington University

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Ekundayo (Dayo) Shittu is an assistant professor of Engineering Management and Systems Engineering at George Washington University. Professor Shittu conducts basic and applied research that take a systems approach to address the different dimensions of decision making under multiple and sequential uncertainties. His focus is on the economics and management of energy technologies, the design and impacts of climate change response policies, sustainability efforts, corporate social responsibility, and patterns of consumer behavior in energy consumption in the emerging era of smart grid technologies.

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An undergraduate Nanotechnology Fellows Program was established to addresses key problems in implementing nanotechnology education: (1) science and engineering curricula are already full; (2) practical, hands-on experiences require extensive training on complex, expensive equipment; and (3) necessary fundamental concepts and knowledge span multiple disciplines and are rarely taught at the undergraduate level. This work reports on the program evolution over the course of three years as well as the short- and long-term impacts on students’ academic and professional careers. The evaluation results from the first year indicated the most profound impact came from integrating the interdisciplinary education, professional development, and outreach components to develop students’ career and leadership skills. The nanotechnology education outcomes were secondary to the career and leadership development even though nanotechnology education and training was the primary program goal. Program modifications were made in the second and third years to capitalize on these initial results. The summative survey results for all three cohorts demonstrate the impact of these changes. The results point to the use of this integrated program approach as a tool for improving engineering education.

Leblanc, S., & Shittu, E. (2018, June), Nanotechnology Fellows Program: Integrating Interdisciplinary Education, Professional Development, and Outreach Paper presented at 2018 ASEE Annual Conference & Exposition , Salt Lake City, Utah. 10.18260/1-2--30831

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