June 14, 2009
June 14, 2009
June 17, 2009
K-12 & Pre-College Engineering
14.946.1 - 14.946.18
Pathway Programs For Underrepresented Ethnic Students from Pre-College to the College of Engineering
With support from the Ohio Board of Regents the Emerging Ethnic Engineers (E3) Program in the College of Engineering at University of Cincinnati (UC), Ohio, U.S.A. has established a series of Pathway Programs leading to their enrollment and graduation from the College of Engineering. The objective of the “Pathway Programs” is to increase the awareness and interest of underrepresented ethnic students in pursuing engineering as an academic major; and to assist in their math/science academic preparation. Underrepresented ethnic students are defined as students whose enrollment numbers have been traditionally low in the college; they consist of African American, Hispanic/Latino, and Native American. Each program has specific objectives, with the long-range goal of increasing the pool of prospective ethnic engineering students from the greater Cincinnati and Northern Kentucky area eligible for admission to the College of Engineering. The Cincinnati Public Schools has the largest concentration of prospective ethnic students; and therefore is the target district, but all of the programs are open to Greater Cincinnati students.
The support received from the Ohio Board of Regents has been used to specifically establish three Pathway Programs beginning with our Family Science Academy (4th to 7th grades), to the Summer Institute (8th to 12thgrades), and the underrepresented ethnic students accepted into the UC’s College of Engineering are invited to participate in our Summer Bridge Program. The E3 Program has a long history of providing pre-college programs; beginning with the Family Science Academy serving 502 students from 1995 -2005, the Summer Institute, serving 316 students form 1990 – 1998, and the Summer Bridge Program for entering underrepresented first year engineering students serving 382 students form 1989 – 2008. Both the Family Science Academy and the Summer Institute were reconstituted in 2007 with emphasis on project-based ;earning activities and contextual learning. While these programs have a long history, an independent evaluation was necessary for all programs to better measure their impact of increasing awareness and interest underrepresented ethnic students; and increasing the success of those students once admitted to the College of Engineering. Beginning in 2007, a independent evaluation process for these programs was implemented and conducted by the UC Evaluation Services Center (UCESC). This paper, first, describes the salient features of the three Pathway Programs and how each was executed during the summer of 2007, second, the paper describes the evaluation plan to conduct the formative and summative assessments of the three programs established by the UCESC, third the evaluation results obtained for the 2007 pathway programs, and, fourth, in conclusion the enhancements planned from the lessons learned. Hopefully, the material presented in this paper will help others plan similar programs at their institutions.
Need for the Programs
In the past years, there has been an increased discussion on the national and state level regarding the number of students entering science, technology, engineering, and mathematics (STEM) disciplines in general and underrepresented ethnic students in particular. Concerns about these situations and the overall quality of STEM education have been raised in a number of reports,
Kukreti, A., & Simonson, K., & Evans, L. (2009, June), Pathway Programs For Underrepresented Ethnic Students From Precollege To The College Of Engineering Paper presented at 2009 Annual Conference & Exposition, Austin, Texas. https://peer.asee.org/5012
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