Apologies for the lack of timely blogging, but things in CRA-ville are a little bit crazy as we prepare for our Spring Board Meeting, CRA’s Computing Leadership Summit, and our annual congressional visits day — all next week. But there is a story that is a little dated, but certainly worth a note here. CRA Board Member Leah Jameson, along with her colleagues Edward J. Coyle and William Oakes from Purdue’s Engineering Projects in Community Service (EPICS) program were awarded the Bernard M. Gordon Prize by the National Academy of Engineering on Monday night.
The EPICS project pairs teams of undergraduate engineering students with nonprofit organizations to solve engineering problems in the community.
Community service agencies face a future in which they must take advantage of technology to improve, coordinate, account for, and deliver the services they provide. They need the help of people with strong technical backgrounds. Undergraduate students face a future in which they will need more than solid expertise in their discipline to succeed. They will be expected to work with people of many different backgrounds to identify and achieve goals. They need educational experiences that can help them broaden their skills.
The challenge is to bring these two groups together in a mutually beneficial way.
Apparently, the NAE felt EPICS was meeting that challenge. The Gordon prize is given annually for “innovation in engineering and technology education” and carries a $500,000 award. And it’s not the first the program has received.