June 24, 2007
June 24, 2007
June 27, 2007
Electrical and Computer
12.1345.1 - 12.1345.9
Teaching and Mentoring Research Experiences for Undergraduates in Power Electronics
This study examines the National Science Foundation’s (NSF) Research Experiences for Undergraduates (REU) program and REU for Louis Stokes Alliance for Minority Participation (LSAMP) Scholars at the Center for Power Electronic Systems (CPES) at Virginia Tech.
The REU program “supports active research participation by undergraduate students in any of the areas of research funded by the National Science Foundation. REU projects involve students in meaningful ways in ongoing research programs or in research projects designed especially for the purpose. […] Undergraduate student participants […] must be citizens or permanent residents of the United States or its possessions.”1
The CPES REU program seeks to: provide experiences, develop expertise in experimental laboratory research among undergraduates prior to their senior year of undergraduate study, and to encourage participants to pursue graduate studies in science, technology, engineering and mathematics (STEM) programs. The NSF Engineering Research Centers (ERC) Program, which is designed to foster multi-institutional, interdisciplinary, and systems-oriented approach to collaborative research, is a favorable environment for development of a rich REU experience.
Following completion of a successful three-year REU program at Virginia Tech and the University of Puerto Rico Mayaguez (UPRM), CPES successfully proposed a three-year continuation of the program at both universities. During this period, CPES also sought to broaden its approach to the REU program goal of expanding linkages to curriculums designed to increase participation of students from under-represented populations in STEM fields. As multi- institutional centers with a 10-year potential NSF funding cycle, ERCs are well suited to foster inter-institutional collaboration with core and outreach partner institutions over the course of many years. To encourage the development of programmatic linkages as part of each Center’s diversity strategic plan, the NSF offered all active ERCs the opportunity to submit proposals for the development of programs which create linkages between research centers and large-scale NSF human resource development initiatives. For CPES, this program solicitation represented the opportunity to expand linkages with the NSF’s Louis Stokes Alliance for Minority Participation (LSAMP) program. The LSAMP program “is aimed at increasing the quality and quantity of students successfully completing STEM baccalaureate degree programs, and increasing the number of students interested in, academically qualified for, and matriculated into programs of graduate study. LSAMP programs support sustained and comprehensive approaches that facilitate achievement of the long-term goal of increasing the number of students who earn doctorates in STEM fields, particularly those from populations underrepresented in STEM fields. The program goals are accomplished through the formation of alliances.”2
In 2004, CPES successfully proposed to build on a growing collaboration between the ERC program and the LSAMP program in order to develop an REU in power electronics targeted to LSAMP participants. The purpose of this program is threefold: 1) to provide additional
Sterk, D., & Thacker, T., & Tranter, E., & Goff, R., & Terpenny, J. (2007, June), Teaching And Mentoring Research Experiences For Undergraduates In Power Electronics Paper presented at 2007 Annual Conference & Exposition, Honolulu, Hawaii. 10.18260/1-2--2625
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