Help Us Customize the New House

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Welcome to our very new community of Hacking Engineering. This post is in the way of an introduction beyond the mission statement and – hopefully – the start of a conversation.

The intent of Hacking Engineering is to begin to connect the many people, institutions, and networks that are addressing transformation in engineering education. There is so much good work going on all over the country (and, we’re learning, all over the world) – while there are different flavors of transformation, all of it in some way is aimed at giving students new kinds of learning experiences so that they are better-equipped to help solve problems big and small. There is tremendous power in that network for accelerating learning, adoption and dissemination.

But – you’ll notice that the house is still a little sparse. Yes! If you’re a Strategic Doer, you’ll recognize the principle of “build on the assets that are around the table.” We have some ideas about what the network should look like, but we’re also trying to build around what’s wanted and needed. For example, should we host an in-person meetup, either nationally or regionally? Is there a need for any sorts of workshops (that isn’t already being filled)? Could we facilitate online peer interaction (and if so, how)? Please tell us – either by replying to this post or emailing me.

We do have some larger beams in place – like this blog. The hope is to post at least three kinds of entries:

  • Events: things going on that might be of interest to the community, whether in person or virtual.
  • Assets: pointers to resources that can be used in transforming engineering education.
  • Making Change: assets is about the “what” of change; this category is more reflective, the “how” to make change.

We’ll be reaching out (continuously) to gather fodder for the blog, but want to have efforts at the institutions and organizations in the network front and center. Email me if you have an idea.

We’re also building in a way to share small successes like an idea for a student project, or a way you’ve gotten around bureaucratic hurdles. We’re calling it Hack of the Week. We’d love to have so many ideas it becomes Hack of the Day. Again, email me with your hack.

Finally, to address a question we’ve already gotten: is this just a Purdue effort to spread their own ideas and models? Only in the sense that Purdue is beginning the conversation and wants to share what they’re learning in their own transformation projects. We are confident that there are plenty of others that want to share what they’re learning as well. While the house is indeed under construction, the chairs are around the table, waiting for you. Come on in!

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