Optimizing summer externships

Major Hans J. Thomas, Michael E. Nowatkowski, Brodie K. Hoyer, Michael J. Benson, Bruce Floersheim, Luksa Luznik, Wesly Anderson, Steven J. Condly

Research output: Contribution to conferencePaperpeer-review


Summer immersive experiences provide students the opportunity to explore the limits of their engineering education and develop a depth in a field of study. For institutions that centrally manage these experiences, ranging from experiments conducted at other academic locations to research and development with industry partners, to procurement and development with government laboratories and program offices, it can be difficult to ensure that all participants are receiving quality experiences. A survey had previously been administered to capture the value of student's summer immersive experience based on ABET Student Outcomes. Much of the data proved inconclusive due to the structure of the questions. However the data was used as a baseline for follow on research and guided the development of future surveys. Following the summer of 2013, a new survey was administered to students majoring in aeronautical, electrical, and mechanical engineering at three different colleges who had participated in institution-sponsored immersive experiences. The goal of the survey was to determine why students chose their summer experiences, what made these experiences successful, and how to improve experiences in the future to maximize return on investment. Success was measured not just in whether they experienced the ABET Student Outcomes (a)-(k) but to what level they were challenged in those domains. The results of the survey will be used next summer to influence which experiences are offered and refine how students are paired with a summer experience.

Original languageEnglish (US)
StatePublished - Jan 1 2014
Externally publishedYes
Event121st ASEE Annual Conference and Exposition: 360 Degrees of Engineering Education - Indianapolis, IN, United States
Duration: Jun 15 2014Jun 18 2014


Other121st ASEE Annual Conference and Exposition: 360 Degrees of Engineering Education
Country/TerritoryUnited States
CityIndianapolis, IN

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Engineering(all)


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