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Title: Developing a Collaborative Undergraduate STEM Program in Resilient and Sustainable Infrastructure
After a natural disaster, multiple disciplines need to come together to rebuild the damaged infrastructure using new paradigms. For instance, urgent restoration of services demand to abridge the projects’ schedule and provide innovative solutions, thus making collaboration and integration essential for the project’s success. Commonly, the academic preparation of scholars on infrastructure-related disciplines takes place in isolated professional domains, rarely tackling interdisciplinary problems and/or learn from the systematic research of previous experiences. In Puerto Rico, the aftermath of Hurricanes Irma and Maria has heightened awareness regarding the education on infrastructure-related disciplines to provide transdisciplinary solutions to pertinent complex challenges. This taxing context compels the academia to train a new cadre of professionals properly prepared in those STEM disciplines. Further, current public awareness of the vulnerability of the existing infrastructure creates an opportunity to recruit and prepare students to become those much-needed professionals. The present work offers the conceptual framework of a collaborative effort among Architecture, Engineering, and Construction (AEC) to develop an interdisciplinary program in resilient and sustainable infrastructure. The framework includes the development of transformational pedagogic interventions and changes that will challenge the disciplinary splits among AEC. The framework targets values and skills for inter and transdisciplinary problem solving, more » as well as helps smooth the transition from academic education to professional practice. To implement the initiative, the project created a collaborative platform among three campuses of the University of Puerto Rico System. Each of these campuses offers a different educational component relevant to the enriching educational initiative. We expect this approach to create a new breed of professionals ready to face the challenges posed for the development of robust infrastructure. The strategy fosters readiness in environmental design in engineering and construction through evidence-based design and inter/transdisciplinary problem solving. Thus, this research contributes to the body of knowledge by presenting a collaborative effort to train future professionals to design and build a robust infrastructure that can overcome the impact of major natural catastrophes. « less
Authors:
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Award ID(s):
1832468
Publication Date:
NSF-PAR ID:
10111782
Journal Name:
Review & directory - American Society for Engineering Education
ISSN:
0092-4326
Sponsoring Org:
National Science Foundation
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