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Recruitment And Retention Of Underrepresented Students To A Career Of Research In Engineering And The Sciences

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2001 Annual Conference


Albuquerque, New Mexico

Publication Date

June 24, 2001

Start Date

June 24, 2001

End Date

June 27, 2001



Page Count


Page Numbers

6.840.1 - 6.840.8



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Ardie Walser

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

Session 2530

Recruitment and Retention of Underrepresented Students to a Career of Research in Engineering and the Sciences Ardie D. Walser Electrical Engineering Department of the City College and Graduate Center of the City University of New York


We wish to present a program designed to encourage pre-college students to major in engineering and to consider research as a career track. We will give a description of the program and how it was mounted. It is our objective in this presentation to demonstrate that a program tailored for our institution is flexible enough to be adapted to fit many other universities.

I. Introduction

The City College of the City University of New York has long been a viable means for underrepresented groups to advance socially and professionally. The geographic area in which the university sits allows the school to draw its enrollment from one of the highest concentration of minority groups in the nation. City College has been and continues to be a major source of underrepresented undergraduates who go on to earn the Ph.D. degree. It is generally accepted that the most effective time to encourage young people to consider careers in engineering and the sciences is during the pre-college years. SPISE-CREAM (Select Program in Science and Engineering-Careers in Research Encouragement and Mentoring) is directed toward pre-college students, exposing them to engineering and the research experience. The program, while directed at high-school juniors, has attracted high- school seniors and sophomores. By linking to undergraduate research programs that feed minority students into graduate programs, SPISE CREAM creates a minority Ph.D. pipeline.

II. Program Description

The SPISE-CREAM program is a ten week Saturday program sponsored in part by the General Electric fund and the NSF sponsored coalition ECSEL. The instructional staff consisted of two professors (one civil engineer and one electrical engineer) from the school of Engineering at the City College of New York, a high school science teacher from the New York City Public School system and four undergraduate students. The students were given a hands-on feeling for the nature of research and design through work on a project in a team and mentoring environment. The project encompasses concepts and principles from various engineering disciplines (i.e. computer science, mechanical, electrical and civil engineering). The program encourages pre-college students to major in engineering at City College and to consider research as a career track. During the application process candidates had to submit an application form, two letters of recommendation from a high

“Proceedings of the 2001 American Society for Engineering Education Annual Conference & Exposition Copyright 2001, American Society for Engineering Education”

Walser, A. (2001, June), Recruitment And Retention Of Underrepresented Students To A Career Of Research In Engineering And The Sciences Paper presented at 2001 Annual Conference, Albuquerque, New Mexico. 10.18260/1-2--9722

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