S ilicon p rairie i nitiative on r obotics in i nformation t echnology
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S ilicon P rairie I nitiative on R obotics in I nformation T echnology. Engineering Is Fun!!!.

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Silicon Prairie Initiative on Robotics in Information Technology


Is Fun!!!

The word engineer has its roots in the Latin word ingeniator, which means ingenious, to devise in the sense of construct, or craftsmanship. Several other words are related to ingeniator, including ingenuity.

Engineering Notebook

  • A significant fraction of engineering time is used just writing things down in the book.

    If it isn’t documented, it didn’t happen.

Engineers and Scientists

  • Engineering Design Process

    • Identify the problem or design objective

    • Define goals and identify constraints

    • Research and gather information

    • Create potential solutions

    • Analyze the viability of the solutions

    • Choose the most appropriate solution

    • Implement the solution

    • Test and evaluate the design

    • Repeat ALL steps as necessary

What Do Engineers Do?

  • Engineers maintain and improve our quality of life.

Convergent (left brain) and

Divergent (right brain) Thinking

Ethics and Design

  • Ethics problems are like design problems

    • Open-ended, non-formulaic

    • No unique, correct answer

  • Both apply a large body of knowledge to the solution of the problem.

  • Both involve the use of analytical skills.

  • Both use heuristics for the search.

21st Century Challenges

  • International Competitiveness

  • Rebuilding the Infrastructure

  • Air and Water Pollution

  • Energy


  • Concurrent engineering demands consideration of the complete life cycle of the product, process, or project.

  • Design for:

    • Manufacturability

    • Affordability

    • Reliability

    • Sustainability

    • Quality






Computer Science

To engineer is human.

To be human is to engineer.

Silicon Prairie Initiative on Robotics in Information Technology


Is Cool!

Those who can, do.

Those who can do more, TEACH.

Both available from the National Academies Press

Messages for Students

  • An engineering education is valuable as the basis for a variety of careers.

  • Engineering offers challenges, excitement, opportunities, and satisfaction.

  • Engineering is worthwhile, challenging, fun, and within reach.

  • An engineering career provides flexibility that allows for family life choices and helping people.

  • It’s not as complicated as you think. Anyone can understand the principles of engineering.

  • Engineering is a collection of diverse fields that need people with diverse talents, experiences, creativity, and entrepreneurial spirit.

  • Math (and science and technology) literacy will open doors in your future.

  • Math is the alphabet of science and engineering.

  • The excitement of engineering is that engineers create “something that has not been” for the good of humanity.

  • Engineering includes a variety of fields of study and occupations.

  • Math is challenging. Competition is not limited to sports.

  • Engineers are not what people expect.

  • Engineering is a springboard to many career opportunities.

Messages for Parents, Teachers, and Guidance Counselors

  • Students must take the tough courses if they want to enter a college of engineering.

  • Engineering features low unemployment.

  • Engineers are creative and human.

  • If you like math, you’ll love engineering.

  • If you like solving problems, wait till you hear what engineers can do.

  • Engineering offers a lifetime of interesting work.

Messages for the Engineering Community

  • Engineering is a core competency necessary to solve the complex technical and environmental challenges facing our customers and stakeholders.

  • Engineering is a lion’s profession.

  • Engineering provides innovative solutions to societal problems.

  • Engineers make use of both old and new knowledge to solve practical problems.

  • Engineering plays an influential role in the burgeoning fields of bioethics, national security, and others.

  • Engineering is a profession for leaders.

Messages for Policy Makers and Opinion Leaders

  • Engineers are responsible for the high standard of living in the United States.

  • Engineering builds societies. Engineering advances economies.

  • Engineering is integral to society’s progress and a country’s ability to produce wealth.

  • The United States can’t expect to continue to solve its problems by importing technical talent from developing countries.

  • Engineers are technology-literate citizens.

  • Global competitiveness demands that many of the best and brightest students enroll in engineering.

  • If engineering enrollments continue to decline, our nation will face a severe competitive and economic crisis.

1970-2003 Degrees

Engineering Degrees

Women Engineers

NAE Aspirations for 2020

  • By 2020, we aspire to a public that will understand and appreciate the profound impact of the engineering profession on sociocultural systems, the full spectrum of career opportunities accessible through an engineering education, and the value of an engineering education to engineers working successfully in nonengineering jobs.

NAE Aspirations for 2020

  • We aspire to engineers in 2020 who will remain well grounded in the basics of mathematics and science, and who will expand their vision of design through a solid grounding in the humanities, social sciences, and economics. Emphasis on the creative process will allow more effective leadership in the development and application of next-generation technologies to problems of the future.

NAE Aspirations for 2020

  • We aspire to an engineering profession that will rapidly embrace the potentialities offered by creativity, invention, and cross-disciplinary fertilization to create and accommodate new fields of endeavor, including those that require openness to interdisciplinary efforts with nonengineering disciplines such as science, social science, and business.

NAE Aspirations for 2020

  • By 2020 we aspire to engineers who will assume leadership positions from which they can serve as positive influences in the making of public policy and in the administration of government and industry.

NAE Aspirations for 2020

  • We aspire to an engineering profession that will effectively recruit, nurture, and welcome underrepresented groups to its ranks.

NAE Aspirations for 2020

  • It is our aspiration that engineers will continue to be leaders in the movement toward use of wise, informed, and economical sustainable development. This should begin in our educational institutions and be founded in the basic tenets of the engineering profession and its actions.

NAE Aspirations for 2020

  • We aspire to a future where engineers are prepared to adapt to changes in global forces and trends and to ethically assist the world in creating a balance in the standard of living for developing and developed countries alike.

NAE Aspirations for 2020

  • Our aspiration is to shape the engineering curriculum for 2020 so as to be responsive to the disparate learning styles of different student populations and attractive for all those seeking a full and well-rounded education that prepares a person for a creative and productive life and positions of leadership.

Attributes of the 21st Century Engineer

  • Strong analytical skills

  • Practical ingenuity

  • Creativity

  • Communication skills

  • Business and management skills

  • leadership skills

  • High ethical standards and a strong sense of professionalism

  • Dynamism, agility, resilience, and flexibility

  • Lifelong learner

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