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The Smarte Enrichment Programs: Perceptions Of Middle School Students About Science And Technology

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1998 Annual Conference


Seattle, Washington

Publication Date

June 28, 1998

Start Date

June 28, 1998

End Date

July 1, 1998



Page Count


Page Numbers

3.579.1 - 3.579.7

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Paper Authors

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Mulchand S. Rathod

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Joella H. Gipson

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

Session 1547


Mulchand S. Rathod, Joella H. Gipson Division of Engineering Technology College of Education Wayne State University Detroit, MI 48202

SUMMARY women, are depicted to comprise about 70% of the new entrants into the labor force by the year 2000. The Southeast Michigan Alliance for Further more, non-White racial/ethnic groups will Reinvestment in Technological Education constitute an increasing percentage of the total US (SMARTE) is a consortium of community colleges, population. Demographic realities dictate an urgent school systems, Wayne State University, and need for intervention to assist and promote the businesses in southeast Michigan formed in representation of all people and especially under September 1993. The alliance exists to promote represented ethnic and racial groups and women in communication and cooperation among its partners to technical workforce. address needs pertaining to the education of technological workforce. One of the goals of this America faces a shortfall of scientists and virtual center is to collaboratively focus on promoting engineers in a near future. It has been mentioned in the technical career as viable and exciting endeavor several forums that the average age of technical among general population and in particular the workforce in Michigan is in its fifties. This middle school students and their parents. represents a challenge for businesses and educational institutions to prepare a spectrum of technical During the period 1995-97, the consortium workers for continued industrial productivity. carried out several enrichment activities. During the summer, 2-week sessions were held for students The Southeast Michigan Alliance for promoted to 8th grade. During the Fall and Winter Reinvestment in Technological Education semesters, two consecutive weekend sessions were (SMARTE) is a consortium of community colleges, held for students enrolled in the 8 th grade. Students school systems, WSU, and businesses in southeast were selected based on recommendations from the Michigan formed in September 1993. The alliance science teacher, counselor, or principal and the exists to promote communication and cooperation quality of the student essay. Parents and students among its partners to address needs pertaining to attended information sessions and award ceremonies. education of the technological workforce. The At the 1997 ASEE Annual Conference, we reported mission is to work collaboratively in a virtual center on the structure of the enrichment program, course that focuses on restructuring of technical curricula contents, teaching pedagogy, and student evaluation and teaching practices in mathematics and science of the curriculum. As a part of the enrichment with integration of authentic activities in an program, we requested the 8 th grade boys and girls to application mode [1,2,3,4,5,6,7]. share their perceptions of their abilities in science and technology, possible career choices in sciences, ENRICHMENT PROGRAMS engineering, and technology, and the support received in from parents to study in these areas. This During the years 1995-97, six enrichment paper summarizes results of 70 students’ responses programs for middle school students were organized and provides some insight about adolescents on by the consortium. Rathod and Gipson presented the engineering and technical education. curriculum components, teaching pedagogy, recruitment of students, interactions with parents, INTRODUCTION impressions of students, and other lessons learned to address the pipeline issue of the technical workforce The engineering professional community has [8]. begun to realize that there is a direct link between economic growth in the United States and the skills and abilities of the people who contribute to that growth. The under-represented groups, including

Rathod, M. S., & Gipson, J. H. (1998, June), The Smarte Enrichment Programs: Perceptions Of Middle School Students About Science And Technology Paper presented at 1998 Annual Conference, Seattle, Washington.

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