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Gobal Projects: An Initiative to Train Chemical Engineering Students in Global Awareness

Rodriguez Alonso, Joaquin and Sanchez, David Gobal Projects: An Initiative to Train Chemical Engineering Students in Global Awareness. In: ASEE 2022 Annual Conference, 26 June 2022 - 29 June 2022, Minneapolis, Minnesota.

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The United Nations General Assembly established a set of 17 goals in 2015 known as the Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs). They inspire concerted efforts around the world to be accomplished by the year 2030. Goal 17, “Partnerships for the Goals”, embraces the fundamental strategy to achieve all the goals by the effective collaboration of all nations, institutions, organizations, and individuals. It relies on extensive global awareness as the fundamental ground to build the recognition of diversity and inclusion; striving to consider every perspective in our shared world. Academic institutions, particularly colleges and universities, should take leadership roles in educating the upcoming generation of professionals and leaders to accomplish this mission. Engineering schools and departments are required to demonstrate these as educational outcomes for their students. Specifically, Student Outcomes 2, 3, and 4 of ABET Criterion 3, all involve awareness, communication, and consideration of global contexts. This is critical to address the Sustainable Development goals as the students make up the future workforce in charge of advancing technical solutions for a better and sustainable world. This paper discusses a three-year experience in the Chemical Engineering Department, with the participation of 162 college students, in 33 projects, as a curricular requirement for a capstone course. The project provided a unique opportunity for students to become acquainted with problems around the world and to challenge them to consider multiple solutions. Student teams collaborated with foreign organizations (in the country they chose to address a problem) to analyze and propose solutions for challenges in that country. Activities are organized during the entire semester following project management techniques. They include an early presentation of the proposal, a scheduled progress report presentation, a poster, and a final presentation. Foreign partners are asked to provide their reflections on the experience. All classmates review and peer grade every deliverable from other teams. Students evaluate their teammates’ performance and provide a self-assessment of their individual experience at the end of the course. A ChE Global Day was held at the end of the semester to display the posters and presentations to a broad audience with the support of university offices and centers focused on global experiences and international relations. Students earn up to 10% of the definitive grade of the course for these global engagement projects. This approach has proved to be fully sustainable, and with an overwhelming satisfaction of all the participants. It is important to note that the incorporation of a virtual platform during COVID-19 and the continuous monitoring and coaching by the instructor are producing best practices to foster communication between students and stakeholders.


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Item Type: Conference or Workshop Item (Poster)
CreatorsEmailPitt UsernameORCID
Rodriguez Alonso, JoaquinJOR104@pitt.eduJOR1040000-0002-7238-4774
Sanchez, David
Event Title: ASEE 2022 Annual Conference
Event Dates: 26 June 2022 - 29 June 2022
Event Type: Conference
Schools and Programs: Swanson School of Engineering > Chemical and Petroleum Engineering
Refereed: Yes
Uncontrolled Keywords: global awareness, college engineering, global projects
Date Deposited: 05 Jul 2022 20:34
Last Modified: 07 Jul 2022 04:55


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