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Offering A Successful Engineering Technology Program At A Large Research University: Challenges And Unusual Circumstances

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2009 Annual Conference & Exposition


Austin, Texas

Publication Date

June 14, 2009

Start Date

June 14, 2009

End Date

June 17, 2009



Conference Session

Issues and Direction in ET Education and Administration: Part II

Tagged Division

Engineering Technology

Page Count


Page Numbers

14.921.1 - 14.921.10



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Paper Authors


Carmine Balascio University of Delaware

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Carmine C. Balascio, Ph.D., P.E. is an Associate Professor in the Department of Bioresources Engineering at the University of Delaware. He earned bachelor’s degrees in Agricultural Engineering Technology and Mathematics from U.D. He earned an M.S. in Agricultural Engineering and a Ph.D. double major in Agricultural Engineering and Engineering Mechanics from Iowa State University. He teaches courses in surveying, soil mechanics, and storm-water management and has research interests in urban hydrology,water resources engineering, and assessment of student learning. In August 2008, he concluded eight years as a member of Delaware’s Engineering Licensing board, the DAPE Council, but continues to be active on DAPE and NCEES committees.

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

Offering a Successful Engineering Technology Program at a Large Research University: Challenges and Unusual Circumstances

Abstract: This paper examines the challenges facing the Department of Bioresources Engineering in offering its 4-year general Engineering Technology (ET) Program at the University of Delaware (UD). UD is a large land-grant university classified by the Carnegie Foundation (1) as a Research University (very high research activity) – RU/VH. The RU/VH designation indicates the highest level of research activity as rated by the Carnegie Foundation. The department and its ET program are subject to unusual circumstances because neither is formally associated with the university’s College of Engineering, but instead are administered through the College of Agriculture and Natural Resources. The challenges examined in this paper include: ≠ Recruitment of ET students for a program and department located physically and administratively in the university’s College of Agriculture and Natural Resources. ≠ Coping with limited departmental laboratory space for teaching laboratory-rich ET subject matter. ≠ Recruitment of faculty who can contribute to a general ET program when hiring decisions are based primarily on the ability of a potential tenure-track faculty member to support the research mission of the College of Agriculture and Natural Resources – a mission that does not specifically include research related to ET. ≠ Recruitment of faculty in a department with no doctoral program and only a fledgling master’s program. The role of adjunct faculty, future evolution of the ET program at UD, and implications for programs in more conventional settings are also discussed. Introduction: The history of the general ET program at the University of Delaware (UD) goes back to the 1960s when the then Department of Agricultural Engineering began an unaccredited 4-year program in Agricultural Engineering Technology (AET). At that time, the department offered no graduate degrees and the university was not in the upper tier of research institutions. From the program’s inception through the 1980s, 20 to 30 students typically graduated each year. In the early 1980s, the AET program obtained TAC of ABET accreditation and became the only accredited AET program in the country at that time. To serve an indentified need in the state, a 4-year general ET program was added about 1983 that was intended to serve mainly transfers holding 2-year ET associate degrees from regional community colleges. The 4-year general ET degree obtained TAC of ABET accreditation by around 1987.

Balascio, C. (2009, June), Offering A Successful Engineering Technology Program At A Large Research University: Challenges And Unusual Circumstances Paper presented at 2009 Annual Conference & Exposition, Austin, Texas. 10.18260/1-2--5468

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