Inspiring and Engaging the Next Generation in STEM through PLTW and REAL
Abstract: Dr. Cordelia Ontiveros and Elena Alvarez co-authored this California State Polytechnic University, Pomona paper on their K12-outreach efforts. This paper is included in the ASQ 2012 Advancing the STEM Agenda Conference Proceedings.
Our nation's shortage of engineering graduates is an issue in which higher education institutions have placed ongoing efforts. Recently, a greater emphasis has been designated to increasing the number of underrepresented groups that would account for a diverse pool of well qualified engineers (Genalo et al., 2000). The College of Engineering (CoE) at California State Polytechnic University, Pomona (Cal Poly Pomona), a Hispanic Serving Institution, is committed to increasing the number of individuals within engineering, including women and underrepresented students, through the implementation of various programs that promote early engagement in K-12 schools. The CoE at Cal Poly Pomona has taken an approach that engages and inspires the next generation of engineering students through comprehensive outreach that incorporates middle and high school engineering curriculum through Project Lead The Way (PLTW), elementary school exposure through the Robotics Education through Active Learning (REAL) Program, and the fostering of student implemented K-12 outreach that serves the dual purpose of retention for our current students and outreach.
Keywords: STEM - Conference Proceedings - Women and Girls in STEM - Hands-on Learning - K-12 Outreach