June 18, 2006
June 18, 2006
June 21, 2006
K-12 & Pre-College Engineering
11.1406.1 - 11.1406.9
Using Research as a Tool for Student Recruiting ABSTRACT The Dave C. Swalm School of Chemical Engineering, in conjunction with the Mississippi Science and Mathematics School, in Columbus, MS (approximately 25 miles from the Mississippi State campus) has joined in a program for providing research experiences for junior and senior high school students. Three students participated in the program in the fall 2005 semester. The goals of the program include recruiting high school students to consider programs of study in chemical engineering or related fields at Mississippi State and to increase students’ technological literacy by participating in active research projects. Of the three participants for fall 2005, one has declared his intention of studying chemical engineering at Mississippi State. The authors felt that the program objectives were met for helping students to become more familiar with our program and curriculum and for helping high school students to learn about conducting research with “real-world” applications. Future offerings of the program will be modified to optimize student schedules and increase the efficiency of their time on the Mississippi State campus.
Recruiting students with top academic standing is a highly competitive activity necessitating creative strategies for engaging them as they choose a university and major field of study. Such students may be academically prepared for entrance into an engineering program and informed about educational opportunities, but may lack the experience to accurately judge which field best fits their interests. It is important to provide these students with additional “data” and positive experiences. Providing an interactive experience can enlarge their view of engineering and of their potential for playing a significant role in a particular field. Attributes of providing a research experience through a local university include exposing students to the college environment, promoting interactions with successful undergraduates, and providing personal points of contact among faculty at an institution.
The authors have worked cooperatively with a counselor at an accelerated mathematics and science high school to introduce high school juniors and seniors to a chemical engineering research environment. Students participating in this program investigate scientific literature and conduct experimental work under faculty guidance. Their research experience culminates with a project report and presentation for class credit. The high school students spend 3 to 4 hours per week on campus engaged in research related activities. We anticipate reaching the goal of recruiting more, high quality, students to MSU’s chemical engineering program (or other engineering and science programs) by fostering interactions with faculty, graduate and undergraduate students through teamwork in the laboratory, discussions at meetings and by enjoying social interactions.
Strengths and weaknesses of this program will be discussed, including the development of the mentor/protégé relationship, exposure to new concepts, laboratory training, and providing a meaningful experience within time constraints. This discussion will conclude with an
Elmore, B., & Minerick, A. (2006, June), Using Research As A Tool For Student Recruiting Paper presented at 2006 Annual Conference & Exposition, Chicago, Illinois. https://peer.asee.org/1139
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: © 2006 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