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The Career Compass Professional Development Program, Instilling Integrity, Courage, Competence, and Accountability in all Undergraduate Engineering Students

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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

Internship, Co-Op, and Professional Development Programs

Tagged Division

Cooperative and Experiential Education

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Paper Authors


Frank E. Falcone Villanova University

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Professor Falcone is the Director of Professional Development & Experiential Education in the College of Engineering at Villanova University. His current primary focus is the development of the College's new Professional Development Program entitled CAREER COMPASS. His primary fields of technical interest and experience are in Hydraulics, Hydrology, Fluid Mechanics and Water Resources. He has also taught Professional Practices in Engineering and Engineering in the Humanistic Context which are courses focused on exploring a wide range of leadership, management & ethical issues confronting engineers and engineering students on a day-to-day basis.
Prof. Falcone is a registered professional engineer, a diplomat in the American Academy of Water Resources Engineers, a retired Captain of the U.S. Navy, a former William C. Foster fellow at the U.S. Department of State and a consultant for the U.S. Department of State in the field of International Arms Control. In 2017, he was awarded the EDUCATOR OF THE YEAR Award from the American Society of Civil Engineers, Philadelphia Section.

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Andrea L. Welker Villanova University

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Dr. Andrea L. Welker, PE, is the Associate Dean for Academic Affairs in the College of Engineering and a Professor in the department of Civil and Environmental Engineering at Villanova University. Her research focuses on the geotechnical aspects of stormwater control measures and the use of recycled materials in plastic pipes. In addition to teaching and performing research, she is the director of the GeoVideo competition for the Geo-Institute of ASCE and is the Program Chair of the Civil Engineering Division of ASEE.

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Gayle F. Doyle Villanova University

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Ms. Gayle Doyle is the Assistant Director for Undergraduate Student Services and Operations in the College of Engineering at Villanova University. In this capacity, Ms. Doyle is responsible for numerous undergraduate recruitment activities, for providing liaison with the College’s Admissions Committee, for providing liaison to the University Career Center and for administering the Career Compass Program. Administration of the Career Compass Program requires managing the ‘Blackboard’ learning management system for all students, monitoring student progress and communication with individual students as necessary.

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The Career Compass Professional Development Program Instilling Integrity, Courage, Competence and Accountability in all Undergraduate Engineering Students

This is an Evidence Based Practice Paper. Technology, globalization, and critical world issues are profoundly transforming the engineering profession. Today's graduates are no longer needed to perform routine work that can be accomplished by trained technicians or by advanced computerized systems. Instead, both the public and private sectors are looking for engineering professionals who are driven to innovate, lead and manage in ways much different than their predecessors. The demand is for those who can quickly and efficiently create, identify, design, construct, deploy, and operate technological responses to meet and exceed the needs of today and future generations. In response to this changing landscape, XX University's College of Engineering has developed a comprehensive professional development program dubbed Career Compass. This new, mandatory professional development program stimulates and develops broad-based innovative, leadership and management skills. In addition, Career Compass provides specific guidance in ethical behavior, group dynamics, networking, oral and written communication, and career planning and preparation skills. Developed in consultation with engineering alumni, faculty, and students, Career Compass is a series of six required and two optional courses. The first six courses are completed during the first three years of the curriculum and the second two optional courses may be completed during senior year. The content is grouped around four major themes:

1. The Engineering Profession 2. Setting the Stage for Personal Success 3. Post-Graduation Planning 4. Communicating in the 21st Century

Career Compass is delivered in a variety of formats including online videos with quizzes, direct learning modules, professional events/presentations, in-person workshops, and an organized, guided Mentoring Program.

This paper will focus on the following:  How the Career Compass program was developed  How the Career Compass program is managed, operated, and delivered  The results of pre-assessment and post-assessment surveys administered during the inaugural year of the program  Specifics of the mentoring program  Lessons learned during the implementation of this program  Plans for CC Program improvement from the standpoint of 'Continuous Improvement'

Falcone, F. E., & Welker, A. L., & Doyle, G. F. (2018, June), The Career Compass Professional Development Program, Instilling Integrity, Courage, Competence, and Accountability in all Undergraduate Engineering Students Paper presented at 2018 ASEE Annual Conference & Exposition , Salt Lake City, Utah. 10.18260/1-2--31080

ASEE holds the copyright on this document. It may be read by the public free of charge. Authors may archive their work on personal websites or in institutional repositories with the following citation: © 2018 American Society for Engineering Education. Other scholars may excerpt or quote from these materials with the same citation. When excerpting or quoting from Conference Proceedings, authors should, in addition to noting the ASEE copyright, list all the original authors and their institutions and name the host city of the conference. - Last updated April 1, 2015