PRISM - American Society for Engineering Education - Logo - OCTOBER 2004 - VOLUME 14, NUMBER 2
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A Whole Lot Going On

Frank L HubandOctober 1 is the beginning of ASEE's new fiscal year, and so it feels appropriate to be moving ahead with new plans and new projects. We've just held a successful ASEE International Colloquium in Beijing, China, at Tsinghua University. It was an excellent meeting—with a fine program and good attendance. Exchanging ideas across the cultural divide was challenging and exciting. Another new effort includes the major changes ahead for the Journal of Engineering Education. There will be a special January 2005 issue that will celebrate the practice of research in engineering education as well as set an elevated tone for Journal issues ahead. We've also gained momentum with the award of the National Science Foundation's Graduate Fellowship Research Program. Administering this major program necessitated important growth, and we've leased additional office space and hired 10 new people. ASEE's new K12 Constituent Committee is only 18 months old but already boasts almost 400 members. Jacquelyn Sullivan, professor at University of Colorado at Boulder, has been a strong supporter of ASEE's K12 efforts, and she served as the first chair of this fast-growing constituent committee. Jackie is profiled in this month's Prism article, "True Grit." Her story is one of success, and I think you'll enjoy reading about this determined advocate for more women and minorities in engineering.

This month's cover story is "Sweating the Small Stuff" – and we're talking really small stuff. Nanotechnology is a hot new field. Industry is clambering for trained workers at all levels, and states see nanotechnology as an area of investment that can make them economically competitive. According to the National Science Foundation, the existing nanotechnology workforce numbers around 20,000; and according to NSF projections, by 2015 worldwide need will have burgeoned to 2 million. Little wonder then that educators and schools are scrambling to figure out how best to teach the new field, or that approaches vary widely.

"East Side Story," looks at the state of information technology in the former Eastern bloc countries. Mostly, the cyber-situation there is sad—PCs woefully out of date, inadequate training, lack of maintenance, and language barriers. However, efforts are being made to span the digital divide between the "information rich" and the "information poor." One hope is that increased integration with the West will help.

As always, if you have comments or thoughts, I would welcome hearing from you.


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

 

 

FEATURES
Sweating the Small Stuff - By Corinna Wu
East Side Story - By Thomas K. Grose
True Grit - By Mary Lord
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Branching Out - By Jo Ellen Meyers Sharp
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Research: Protecting the Home Front - By Randolph Hall
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LAST WORD: Paper or Plastic? - By Mary Kasarda
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