Professor Ed Coyle spoke at the Lunchtime Seminar on Teaching Science and Technology to Nonscientists today. He described a great program which he founded at Purdue University in 1995. His idea is to mutually benefit the community and the university by assessing technology needs with community organizations, and the university proposing solutions by devising engineering projects. Funding is by grant from society or foundation. Professors and students design, develop and manage the project. The projects involve committments of a year anyway, and credit is given for successful completion.
Prof. Edward J. Coyle can be reached at Electrical Engineering in the E-QUAD or ejc@Princeton.EDU He is the William R. Kenan, Jr. Visiting Professor for Distinguished Teaching of Electrical Engineering and the Center for Innovation in Engineering Education.
He is helping to launch projects in Princeton. Prof. Catherine Peters is leading a group of students in “Green retrofitting” an old building at the Stony Brook Watershed Association. Prof. Michael Littman is instructing Princeton Young Achievers in rebuilding a 19th century clock from a tower in Trenton. Here is a link to the Purdue website: http://webscript.princeton.edu/~epics/main.php?section=main&sel=main