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ASEE PRISM
  American Society for Engineering Education
American Society for Engineering EducationNOVEMBER 2007Volume 17 | Number 3 PRISM HOMETABLE OF CONTENTSBACK ISSUES
FEATURES
COVER STORY:  ‘PATCH AND PRAY’ - BY THOMAS K. GROSE
FEATURE: GM SHIFTS GEARS - BY MARY LORD
FEATURE: EYE ON THE WORLD - BY PIERRE HOME-DOUGLAS

DEPARTMENTS
COMMENTS
BRIEFINGS
DATABYTES
REFRACTIONS: Thinking Simple - HENRY PETROSKI
CLASSIFIEDS
LAST WORD: Don’t Overlook Industry - By DONALD A. KEATING & EUGENE M. DELOATCH

TEACHING TOOLBOX
TEACHING TOOLBOX: Knowledge Builders - WITH ‘ELECTRIC PICKLES,’ SPACE-SHUTTLE TILES AND OTHER ATTENTION-GRABBING STRATAGEMS, COLLEGE AND GRADUATE STUDENTS SEEK TO INSPIRE A YOUNG GENERATION OF POTENTIAL ENGINEERS. BY BARBARA MATHIAS-RIEGEL
JEE SELECTS: The Habit of Learning - SCOTT JIUSTO AND DAVID DIBASIO
ON THE SHELF: Our Town, Our World - ROBIN TATU


BACK ISSUES







 
COMMENTS FROM THE PUBLISHER: Problems Back Home Frank L. Huband
 


India and China are evolving as superpowers whose economic ascents have caught world attention. Developed nations are quick to point out the political problems and infrastructure needs that beset both rising powers. Yet if India’s progress is restrained because it can’t build highways, power plants and airports fast enough, what of our own infrastructure? Prism’s cover story, “Danger Zone,” investigates the condition of U.S. infrastructure, an issue thrust into the headlines by the Minneapolis bridge collapse in August. With everything from roads to power grids decaying, the total repair bill is estimated at $1.6 trillion. But money isn’t the only requirement. Government needs to change its approach to maintenance so that problems are corrected before disaster occurs. Fortunately, research engineers are devising new ways to make this task easier with technologies that can detect hidden damage and new materials to prolong infrastructure life. Still, while technologies emerging from academic labs will provide future answers, shoring up America’s aging infrastructure remains a monumental challenge for today.

If roads are becoming hazardous, so is the condition of America’s auto manufacturers. “GM Shifts Gears” reports on the efforts of the biggest, General Motors, to get ahead of the curve. Realizing it has a worldwide pool of technical talent, GM has partnered with the University of Michigan to develop a master’s degree program in engineering that uses the Internet to link instructors in Michigan with students at GM facilities around the globe. Besides online learning, the program fosters online design collaboration.

Knowledge Builders” reports on another program worth examining in engineering education—that of sending undergraduate and graduate-level university students into middle and high schools to offer badly needed exposure to engineering. Judging from anecdotal evidence, these college students appear to be making an impact.

I hope you enjoy these and the many other articles in this month’s Prism. The goal, as always, is to provide members with articles that are topical as well as informative. We are fortunate to have a new managing editor at Prism who brings considerable expertise and experience to the table. Mark Matthews has served as Washington news editor and diplomatic and Middle East correspondent for the Baltimore Sun, and his book, Lost Years: Bush, Sharon and Failure in the Middle East, was just published. I know that Mark, as well as I, would welcome any comments or suggestions you may have.

Frank L. Huband
Executive Director and Publisher
f.huband@asee.org

 

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American Society for Engineering Education