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Showing Nonengineers The Ropes: Teaching Engineering Fundamentals To Future Army Officers

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2004 Annual Conference


Salt Lake City, Utah

Publication Date

June 20, 2004

Start Date

June 20, 2004

End Date

June 23, 2004



Conference Session

Topics in Civil ET

Page Count


Page Numbers

9.1095.1 - 9.1095.11



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Paper Authors

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Thomas Messervey

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MAJ Dave Borowitz

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LTC Keith Landry

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Ronald Welch

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

Session # 2549

Showing Non-Engineers the Ropes: An Introductory Engineering Course for Future Army Officers

CPT Thomas B. Messervey, MAJ David T. Borowicz LTC Keith A. Landry, and COL Ronald W. Welch

United States Military Academy


“Army Leaders must be sophisticated users of advanced technologies and comfortable in employing scientific, mathematical, and engineering concepts to solve national security problems.” 1 - Excerpt from the Operational Concept for the Academic Program of the United States Military Academy

The complexity and ever-changing nature of the world in which our future army officers will be leading soldiers’ demands that each graduate of the United States Military Academy at West Point be a disciplined problem solver who has internalized the engineering thought process. In fact, Engineering and Technology is the first of six domains of knowledge listed under the Academy’s Academic Program Goals (Page 6 – Educating Future Army Officers for a Changing World1). As such, every future “army leader” at West Point must take an engineering sequence, or “track,” as part of their academic program regardless of major or field of study.

The Department of Civil & Mechanical Engineering offers two of the six available engineering sequences at the Academy: civil and mechanical engineering. Historically, these sequences consisted of five, semester-long courses which were also taken by CE and ME majors in the department. However, in 2002, this changed. In response to rapid changes in technology, the Academy conducted a review of its academic program which resulted in the addition of two information technology courses to the core undergraduate curriculum. Consequently, the Department of Civil & Mechanical Engineering surrendered two of the five courses in both engineering sequences and conducted a complete revision of the undergraduate engineering experience for non-engineering majors (Table 1).

“Proceedings of the 2004 American Society for Engineering Education Annual Conference & Exposition Copyright © 2004, American Society for Engineering Education”

Messervey, T., & Borowitz, M. D., & Landry, L. K., & Welch, R. (2004, June), Showing Nonengineers The Ropes: Teaching Engineering Fundamentals To Future Army Officers Paper presented at 2004 Annual Conference, Salt Lake City, Utah. 10.18260/1-2--13839

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