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William F. Cofer

Fall 2002

It takes a village to raise an engineer

In two months spent as a participant in the Boeing A. D. Welliver Faculty Summer Fellowship, I observed that there is more to the development of an engineer than just formulas and lectures.

In spite of the recent downturn in the economy, the demand for engineers in the workforce has remained fairly strong. Yet the enrollment in the nation’s engineering programs has been flat and retention of students low, with less than half of entering engineering students receiving engineering degrees. Prospective engineers are attracted because of their curiosity about the way things work and their problem-solving creativity, but they often drop out of engineering programs … » More …