‘Explore Engineering at Sweet Briar’ is open invitation to high school women

| September 1, 2008

About a month into the first semester in Sweet Briar College’s engineering program, students at the all-women’s school get their initial taste of what engineers do in the workplace. You could say they get their feet wet.

The annual Cardboard Boat Regatta is a team project involving each step of the design process that engineers use every day to solve real-world problems. Students in Engineering 110 must propose, design, test and build buoyant vessels with cardboard and duct tape. Then they climb aboard and try to beat each other to the finish line – if they don’t sink first.

Sound like fun? Sweet Briar Engineering is inviting sophomore, junior and senior high school women to a weekend event to introduce them to engineering and the rewarding opportunities offered by careers in the field. “Explore Engineering at Sweet Briar” begins with a welcome by the department faculty and student mentors at 5 p.m. Friday, Sept. 26 and concludes at SBC’s Lower Lake Saturday afternoon for the fifth running of the regatta.

The schedule includes information sessions on Sweet Briar’s engineering program, internships and careers. There also is a segment where you can “try on” engineering through hands-on design exercises. The program is partially funded by a grant from the National Science Foundation and is made available at no cost to attendees, including accommodations in the College’s residence halls and meals. A $20 deposit is required to reserve a spot, which will be refunded to those who attend the event.

“Engineers use their creativity and imagination to make a difference in our world,” said Hank Yochum, director of the College’s engineering program. “We are thrilled to invite high school women to Sweet Briar to experience firsthand how they can become engineers that design, discover and innovate.”

As one of the few all-women’s colleges in the country to offer degrees in engineering, Sweet Briar’s program is by definition distinctive. It offers a challenging but supportive environment where the classes are small and faculty interactions are high.

The curriculum emphasizes experiential learning from day one, design as a fundamental element of engineering, and creating solutions to human problems in a global context. It stresses a multidisciplinary approach to engineering with particular emphasis on electrical and mechanical systems.

Visit www.engineering.sbc.edu for more information about Sweet Briar Engineering. Click on the “Explore Engineering at Sweet Briar” link for registration information or contact Yochum at hyochum@sbc.edu or (434) 381-6357.

Category: Engineering Science