National Academy Recognizes WPI in New Report

WPI’s Great Problems Seminars has been recognized by the National Academy of Engineering as one of 29 programs that successfully infuses real-world experiences into engineering education.

NAE Report Cover

The National Academy of Engineering (NAE) recently released “Infusing Real World Experiences into Engineering Education,” a report that lists WPI among 29 notable undergraduate engineering programs at colleges and universities in the U.S. that most successfully incorporate an integrated, real-world experience approach to their engineering curricula.

The report was a collaborative effort of the NAE and Advanced Micro Devices, Inc. (AMD) as part of AMD’s NextGen Engineering initiative.  It was designed to encourage enhanced richness and relevance of the undergraduate engineering education experience and to provide guidance for incorporating real world experience in US engineering programs to produce better prepared and globally competitive students that will be the next generation of engineers presented with tomorrow’s challenges.

WPI’s Great Problems Seminar (GPS) is recognized in the report for its progressive way of engaging first year students through its unique offerings focusing on themes of global importance tied into current events, societal problems and human needs.  It cites how WPI's GPS program helps our First Year students develop skills such as critical thinking, information literacy, evidence-based writing, teamwork, time management, organization and personal responsibility to prepare them for more substantial required projects and a future career in engineering.  Included in the report are detailed comparisons of each of the 29 programs, anticipated and actual outcomes, assessment information, and funding/sustainability.

The NAE’s Real World Engineering Education (RWEE) committee received a total of 89 nominations from public and private universities and colleges offering programs in undergraduate engineering around the country.  WPI Professors Diran Apelian (NAE member) and Svetlana Nikitina of Humanities and Arts, along with Kristen Wobbe, Associate Dean of Undergraduate Studies nominated WPI for this important recognition to promote awareness of WPI’s innovative real-world experience in engineering education. 

December 5, 2012

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