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News Archive 2001 - 2010

Engineering Student Recruitment/Retention Program Receives Funding

July 22, 2010

Lower classmen university and community college students are the targets of a new program at The University of Texas at Arlington intended to produce more graduates with engineering degrees. The program – Research Experience for Undergraduates (REU) – will involve research teams made up of undergraduate students paired with College of Engineering faculty members and high school teachers who are participating in an on-going Research Experience for Teachers (RET) program.

Professor and Chair of Civil Engineering Nur Yazdani and Senior Lecturer Dr. Yvette Weatherton, P.E., are the developers and coordinators of the REU program, which is being funded by a $300,000 National Science Foundation grant. The NSF also funds the RET program.

Participants in the program will concentrate in the fields of civil, electrical and computer engineering as they apply to topics in hazard mitigation.

“This program will introduce students to the practical applications of engineering research to real-world problems,” said Dr. Yazdani. “This is especially important with the increased occurrences of natural disasters (hurricanes, tornadoes, flood, earthquake), and man-made events (terrorist threats, cyber security breaches and infrastructure failures such as oil leaks and massive blackouts) that the world has experienced over the past several years.”

“The REU program provides an excellent opportunity to integrate research and education,” added Dr. Weatherton. “In addition to being involved in computer or laboratory-based research, students will participate in field trips, presentations and workshops, all designed to broaden the students’ educational experiences.”

Students will have additional opportunities to give presentations based on their research at area schools, an outreach effort demonstrating engineering principals in action and developing additional interest among younger students for pursuing an engineering degree.