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Hands-On Summer Camp to Attract K–12 Students to Engineering Fields

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4 Author(s)
Muhittin Yilmaz ; Electr. Eng. & Comput. Sci. Dept., Texas A&M Univ. - Kingsville, Kingsville, TX, USA ; Jianhong Ren ; Sheryl Custer ; Joyce Coleman

This paper explains the organization and execution of a summer engineering outreach camp designed to attract and motivate high school students as well as increase their awareness of various engineering fields. The camp curriculum included hands-on, competitive design-oriented engineering projects from several disciplines: the electrical, environmental, mechanical, civil, and chemical engineering fields. The camp also provided additional information on financial aid, the academic programs in the fields of science, technology, engineering, and math (STEM) offered at Texas A&M University-Kingsville (TAMUK), as well as various career options for prospective engineers. The implementation of the camp activities and the well-designed hands-on projects not only increased the students' satisfaction, but also improved their self-confidence and their interest toward engineering disciplines. The engineering outreach camp survey results clearly indicated the success of the camp and the effectiveness of the hands-on, competitive engineering design experiences to attract students to engineering professions. Thus, it demonstrated an effective, feasible, and sustainable engineering recruitment approach.

Published in:

IEEE Transactions on Education  (Volume:53 ,  Issue: 1 )