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Attracting and Motivating the American Indian Student into Engineering and Technology

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3 Author(s)

After examining the inadequately low enrollment of American Indians in studies leading to degrees in Engineering and Engineering Technology, this paper attempts to discuss the reasons for this shortage. It also suggests methods to encourage, motivate, and enable Native American youth to start meaningful studies in these fields. However, to succeed with these methods, a constructive input must come from within the Indians. The writers emphasize the necessity of an early start in motivating the students to take the needed subjects in their secondary education. Orientation lectures should inform them, for instance, what is expected from an engineering or technology student at a university and what engineering work involves. Information obtained by field trips, moving demonstration units, science clubs, etc., should supplement these lectures. It is also necessary that reservation teachers and counselors be involved in the orientation program. Training programs in nearby universities could supplement their background in the nature of engineering as well as in teaching science and mathematics with special reference to technical applications. The implementation of the whole program, including the demonstration units, teachers' programs, tutorials, etc., would require a considerable amount of funds. The establishment of a suitable position for the coordination of all the pertinent activities is definitely needed along with the support of the program by professional organizations as well as by the Indians.

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Education, IEEE Transactions on  (Volume:17 ,  Issue: 1 )