The Role of Extracurricular Activities in the Education of Engineers

The Role of Extracurricular Activities in the Education of Engineers,Odesma Dalrymple,Demetra Evangelou

The Role of Extracurricular Activities in the Education of Engineers  
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The need for reformation of the engineering curriculum taught in most American colleges has been a big topic of discussion, as is evident by the number of journal articles and conferences dedicated to the topic. The terrorist activities that occurred on September 11, 2001 have brought a greater awareness of the vulnerabilities that exist in the world, particularly America. This awareness has lead to the re-examination of the roles of engineers in the society. Emerging from this re- examination is a growing need for renaissance engineers and renaissance engineering education, which is not being satisfied by the current undergraduate engineering curriculum. The reform initiatives currently underway, such as the introduction of an Engineering Education discipline, are ongoing processes, with visible long term impact. However, to bring about more immediate results, alternative complementing ideas can be considered. One such complementing alternative involves the use of extracurricular activities to fill the current gaps in the undergraduate engineering curriculum. Before this alternative can be considered viable, we must explore the role of extracurricular activities in the professional preparation of engineering students. The purpose of this paper is to examine students' perceptions of the role of extra curricula activities in their professional preparation; we present preliminary results.
Published in 2006.
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