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STEM: Customized for Them

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2018 ASEE Annual Conference & Exposition


Salt Lake City, Utah

Publication Date

June 23, 2018

Start Date

June 23, 2018

End Date

July 27, 2018

Conference Session

Women in Engineering Division Technical Session 1

Tagged Division

Women in Engineering

Tagged Topic


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Paper Authors


Laine Schrewe Tolles Career and Technical Center Orcid 16x16

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Laine Schrewe has been an engineering instructor for Tolles Career and Technical Center with a satellite classroom in Jonathan Alder High School (Plain City, Ohio) for three years. Before becoming a teacher, Laine was an engine design engineer for Honda R&D of America for nine years and has a Bachelor's (from the Cooper Union for the Advancement of Science and Art; New York, New York) and Master's degree (from the University of Wisconsin - Madison) in Mechanical Engineering. She is currently obtaining a Master of Arts degree in Workforce Development (from the Ohio State University).

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Bringing STEM programs into our school curriculum is the latest craze in educational strategies, but STEM courses are still a tough sell for a lot of students who don’t excel in traditional math and science courses. This paper discusses how student feedback was used to promote and grow an engineering program at the high school level. A survey was given to all high school students containing questions aimed at finding areas of interest within the student body that could be utilized to restructure the engineering program and the curriculum within that program to better serve the student body population and their interests by renaming and/or adding courses. Enrollment data for the following year was used to validate the data from the survey and showed the following key results: (1) The survey predicted that the Mechanisms and Drives content standards driven class could triple in enrollment if rebadged as Robotics and the actual enrollment data nearly supports that result with an increase of almost 2.5 times previous enrollment; (2) Survey data predicted that enrollment of female students and students not interested in traditional STEM courses could be boosted with a food-themed course, and data shows that the female enrollment of the refurbished program (including a Food Engineering course) enrollment is up from 8.5% to 40% and overall program enrollment is up by 81% over the previous academic year; (3) The latest enrollment offers class sizes averaging at around 14 students, which achieves the goal or 12-14 students per class set for the program; and (4) With 40% female enrollment, the target to achieve participatory numbers higher than the workforce average of 15% was not only surpassed, but was nearly tripled.

Schrewe, L. (2018, June), STEM: Customized for Them Paper presented at 2018 ASEE Annual Conference & Exposition , Salt Lake City, Utah. 10.18260/1-2--30992

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