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Successful Strategies for Attracting More Female Students to Engineering Majors in Emerging Economies: The Case of Southern Mexico

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2020 ASEE Virtual Annual Conference Content Access


Virtual On line

Publication Date

June 22, 2020

Start Date

June 22, 2020

End Date

June 26, 2021

Conference Session

Women in Engineering Division Technical Session 10

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Women in Engineering

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Paper Authors


Miguel X. Rodriguez-Paz Tecnologico de Monterrey (ITESM) Orcid 16x16

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Prof. Rodríguez-Paz got his B.Sc. In Civil Engineering from Tecnologico de Oaxaca in 1993. He studied a M.Sc. In Structural Engineering at Tecnologico de Monterrey and got his Ph.D. from the University of Wales at Swansea in 2003 where he did research on Numerical Methods for Fluid Dynamics as a post-doc Research Officer. In August 2004 he joined Tecnologico de Monterrey at its Puebla Campus. He is a full professor of Applied Mechanics since 2009. His research topics include Engineering Education, Structural Dynamics and Applied Mechanics. He has been a member of the National System of Researchers (SNI) in the Mexican Council of Science and Technology. He has held several position within the School of Engineering, including Head of School and his current post as head of the department of Sustainable Technologies and Civil Engineering. He enjoys teaching Engineering in a fun way and likes to learn about Flipped Learning and Open Education. Since 2010 he is an Academic/educatational Youtuber.

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Israel Zamora-Hernandez Tecnologico de Monterrey

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Israel Zamora-Hernández has a B.Sc. in Electronic Engineering from the Autonomous University of Puebla, Mexico. He has a M.Sc. in Digital Systems from Tecnologico de Monterrey. He has been a lecturer in the School of Engineering for over 18 years. His work especializes in attracting new students to STEM programs at University level. He has directed several teams in the Admissions Office at Tecnologico de Monterrey.

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Jorge A. Gonzalez-Mendivil Tecnológico de Monterrey

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Master in Sciences with an speciality in Quality Systems and Industrial and Systems Engineer by ITESM in Mexico, twenty years of experience in engineering education, several projects in innovation of engineering education such as the use of 3D virtual ambiences as a way of developing competences.

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J. Asuncion Zarate-Garcia Tecnologico de Monterrey (ITESM)

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J. Asuncion Zarate-Garcia received a B.S and a M. E. in Mechanical Engineering from Tecnologico de Monterrey and a Ph. D in Mechanical Engineering from Arizona State University.

He is currently Professor of Mechanical Engineering in the Mechatronics Department of the School of Engineering and Sciences of Tecnologico de Monterrey in Puebla, Mexico, where he teaches Heat Transfer, Thermodynamics and Fluid Mechanics. He also serves as the Director of Division of the School of Engineering and Sciences of Tecnologico de Monterrey in Puebla. His areas of interest are the analysis, design and optimization of thermal systems and the efficient and optimum use of energy in buildings. He has published some articles in the numerical simulation of single phase heated turbulent flow and two-phase turbulent boiling flow.

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The attraction of new students to Engineering programs has always been a topic of interest for Universities all over the world. For the case of female students, in some countries the situation can be even more complicated as cultural issues might be involved.

In this work, we present the results of more than ten year of experience in the attraction of female students to Engineering programs such as Mechatronics Engineering, Industrial Engineering, Mechanical Engineering and Computer Science into a private University. The strategies presented in this paper are focused on the Southern Region of Mexico. This region presents the lowest index of human development according to United Nations results.

Different problems have been faced by the attraction team since the opening of our university campus in 2003, ranging from funding to the difficult cultural issues such as the case when an Engineering degree is not considered as a women’s career choice in some regions of the country.

Some of the best strategies are included along with the kind of activities that have worked best for attracting more women into Engineering . Also, recommendations on how to help them overcome peer and family pressure are described as well as some institutional measures that can be taken into consideration to improve the perception of current students in Engineering.

The conclusions and recommendations of this work can be used in other emerging economies that are working in increasing the number of women in STEM programs.

Rodriguez-Paz, M. X., & Zamora-Hernandez, I., & Gonzalez-Mendivil, J. A., & Zarate-Garcia, J. A. (2020, June), Successful Strategies for Attracting More Female Students to Engineering Majors in Emerging Economies: The Case of Southern Mexico Paper presented at 2020 ASEE Virtual Annual Conference Content Access, Virtual On line . 10.18260/1-2--35253

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