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Overview of a Multi-Disciplinary Online Engagement Model for Female Hispanic Students in Pre-College STEM-Oriented Programs (Work in Progress)

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Conference

2021 ASEE Virtual Annual Conference Content Access

Location

Virtual Conference

Publication Date

July 26, 2021

Start Date

July 26, 2021

End Date

July 19, 2022

Conference Session

Pre-College Engineering Education Division Poster Session

Tagged Division

Pre-College Engineering Education

Tagged Topic

Diversity

Page Count

7

Permanent URL

https://peer.asee.org/37555

Download Count

26

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Paper Authors

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Kaylee Andree Wersant University of Texas at El Paso

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Diane Elisa Golding University of Texas at El Paso

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Diane is a educator and proponent for K-12 engineering education and the education of future teachers.She is an assistant professor at the University of Texas at El Paso (UTEP). Diane serves as the director for the UTEP YES! She Can program that support minorities and minorities within minorities in personal and STEM self-efficacy. She earned her undergraduate and graduate degrees from UTEP and holds a doctorate from the Rossier School of Education, University of Southern California.

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Irma Y. Torres-Catanach University of Texas at El Paso

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Irma Torres-Catanach, PhD, is a postdoctoral researcher at the University of Texas at El Paso, and has worked as part of the research team for the H-AGEP program for the past three years. Her educational background is in psychology, and prior to returning to school to obtain a doctorate degree, she worked as a mental health clinician for fifteen years. Within STEM-education, her research interests are centered on broadening participation of underrepresented minority students in STEM across all educational levels, mentoring experiences, community cultural wealth, and examining URM student's STEM career decision-making process and STEM identity development.

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Karla Alejandra Ayala University of Texas at El Paso

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Karla Ayala is currently an undergraduate student pursuing a Bachelor of Science in Electrical and Computer Engineering at The University of Texas at El Paso. Karla strives to get a concentration in Computer Engineering to be at the forefront on the integration of hardware and software for future technologies that can better enhance the user experience.

Currently she is an undergraduate Support Assistant at the Under Graduate Learning Center in UTEP; where Karla serves as the Gaia Maker Space training team-lead, providing software training to classes as well as one-on-one trainings with students on various software that involve 3D printing, CAD/CAM Design, media production and web services, while also providing technological support to students and faculty with the UGLC’s building and technology infrastructure for events and classes. Karla is also a part of the Tech-E program which exposes k-12 students to a range of emerging technologies through Project-Based Learning opportunities that prepares them for future career and degree choices in STEAM.

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Nora Cuvelier University of Texas at El Paso

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Ivonne Santiago P.E. University of Texas at El Paso

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Dr. Ivonne Santiago is a Clinical Professor of the Civil Engineering (CE) Department at the University of Texas at El Paso (UTEP). Dr. Santiago has a combined experience of over 20 years in the areas of water quality, water treatment and wastewater treatment in Puerto Rico (PR), New Mexico and Texas. Dr. Santiago is passionate about providing experiential learning opportunities to both undergraduate and graduate students locally, regionally and internationally with a focus on Hispanic and female students. She is currently Co-PI of UTEP’s NSF-AGEP program focusing on fostering Hispanic doctoral students for academic careers; the Department of Education’s (DoE) STEMGROW Program and DoE’s Program YES SHE CAN. With support from the Center for Faculty Leadership and Development, she leads a Learning Community for Diversity and Inclusion for Innovation at UTEP. She is also a member of two advisory committees to UTEP’s President: The Diversity, Equity, and Inclusion committee and is chair of the Women’s Advisory Council. She is a member at large of the UTEP Council of Academy of Distinguished Teachers. She is secretary-treasurer for the Public Service Board, which manages El Paso Water. She was a member of the Environmental Protection Agency National Advisory Committee (NAC), that advises the Administrator of the EPA on environmental policy issues related to the implementation of the North American Agreement on Environmental Cooperation. Also, she was a member of the Good Neighbor Environmental Board (GNEB) that advises the President and Congress of the United States on good neighbor practices along the U.S./Mexico border. She has received local and state teaching awards: 2014 UTEP’s CETaL Giraffe Award (for sticking her neck out); 2014 College of Engineering Instruction Award; 2014 The University of Texas System Regents’ Outstanding Teaching Award; and the 2012 NCEES Award for students’ design of a Fire Station. She also received 2018 American Society of Civil Engineers’ Texas Section “Service to the People” award, and 2019 El Paso Engineer of the Year by the Texas Society of Professional Engineers. This is the first time in more than 30 years that a UTEP faculty wins this prestigious award.

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Victor Manuel Garcia Jr. University of Texas at El Paso Orcid 16x16 orcid.org/0000-0003-0227-8201

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Victor Garcia is completing his doctoral degree in Civil Engineering from The University of Texas at El Paso (UTEP). Victor’s doctoral dissertation contributed to the development of performance-engineered mix design specifications to produce balanced mix designs. For more than seven years, he has conducted research projects sponsored by the Texas Department of Transportation in the areas of transportation engineering, highway design, and pavement materials. He has published more than fifteen journal articles and presented more than ten technical presentations in these research topics. He is currently a research associate of the Yes SHE Can program sponsored by the US Department of Education, and the H-AGEP program sponsored by the National Science Foundation. His research interests are in the areas of transportation infrastructure and pavement materials, civil engineering applications in Smart Cities, advancement of STEM education, and career opportunities for underrepresented minority groups. Upon graduation, he will continue his professional career as a civil engineer and researcher at the Airfield and Pavements Branch of the Geotechnical and Structures Laboratory from the US Department of Defense.

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Abstract

Overview of a Multi-disciplinary Online Engagement Model for Female Hispanic Students in Pre-College STEM-oriented Programs (Work-in-Progress) Educational instruction across the world has moved into an online format as a result of the health threats caused by the COVID-19 pandemic. Although online learning is not a new approach at the college level, remote learning environments have now become essential at all education levels. As such, instructors, teachers, and professors have encountered challenges in implementing diverse strategies for keeping students engaged and focused in these learning environments. The development and implementation of new and innovative online engagement models are paramount to fostering remote learning environments that promote accountability, motivation, engagement, and comprehension among students with heterogeneous learning styles. The purpose of this paper is twofold: 1) to document the workshops and activities implemented to increase the attractiveness of STEM programs for female Hispanic high school seniors, and 2) to report on the lessons learned from applying multi-disciplinary online engagement models at a pre-college education program. Through the Yes, She Can (YSC) program at a university, a multi-disciplinary research group investigated the effectiveness of an online engagement program during the summer of 2020. In collaboration with Upward Bound (UB), a program dedicated to increasing the rates of post-secondary education attendance of first-generation low-income students, university researchers deployed the online engagement models with Hispanic female high school students. The online engagement models exposed students to educational activities through professional workshops. The workshops addressed topics such as financial literacy, standardized testing, resume writing, and time management, issues that contribute to a successful entry into post-secondary education. In addition to the workshops, students were offered weekly individual mentoring sessions to allow for a more in-depth grasp of the material and to allow for questions in a face-to-face virtual setting. Surveys meant to collect information about the effectiveness of the program were formulated and distributed to the participants during each workshop and at the end of the six-week program. Qualitative data generated from open-ended responses was analyzed to generate preliminary conclusions for the online engagement program. The feedback was also used to adjust survey instruments and improve data collection during the professional workshops that will be offered next summer. In summary, STEM-oriented online engagement models were investigated through a collaborative research effort between the university YSC and UB programs. The research group offered the following preliminary conclusions and recommendations: 1) allow college students, mainly freshmen level, to lead the professional workshops to create a stronger bond between workshop facilitators and attendees, 2) formulate surveys that are simple and easy to access, and 3) continue offering individual mentoring sessions, as these were found to be very helpful to mentors and mentees. From the data collected and feedback provided, a framework for designing online engagement models will be formulated considering accountability, motivation, and engagement tools that support the learning needs of Hispanic female high school students.

Wersant, K. A., & Golding, D. E., & Torres-Catanach, I. Y., & Ayala, K. A., & Cuvelier, N., & Santiago, I., & Garcia, V. M. (2021, July), Overview of a Multi-Disciplinary Online Engagement Model for Female Hispanic Students in Pre-College STEM-Oriented Programs (Work in Progress) Paper presented at 2021 ASEE Virtual Annual Conference Content Access, Virtual Conference. https://peer.asee.org/37555

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