Rowan Gives Teens Taste of Engineering

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GLASSBORO, N.J. -

Area teenagers are getting together for three days of exciting engineering experiences at Rowan University this summer.

“When you’re in high school and you’re 17 years old, you don’t know what you want to do,” said Melanie Basantis, director of engineering outreach for Rowan University.

So, the school created RISE, Rowan’s Introduction for Students to Engineering. Unlike its other two middle-school programs, this one focuses on high school students who will soon be faced with determining a college major.

“This exposes the students to hands-on experiments and research and career opportunities in each of the disciplines that we have here at Rowan University, that being chemical, civil and environmental, mechanical, electrical and computer and biomedical,” said Basantis.

The students will experience the different types of engineering in the three-day program through the hands-on project.

This lesson is based on a program that we’re doing at Rowan to familiarize the engineering students in high school with programs in our university.

The program will include: “Exciting lab tours, industry tours in addition to campus tours through the mentorship of faculty and grad students,” according to Basantis.

During day one of RISE, the students put on safety glasses and gloves and got right to work in groups.

“This lesson is based on a program that we’re doing at Rowan to familiarize the engineering students in high school with programs in our university,” said Dr. Iman Noshadi, an assistant professor in Chemical Engineering at Rowan University.

“In biomedical engineering, as you can see, they’ll be doing gel bead and fermentation,” said Basantis.

For civil engineering, they’ll build and race concrete canoes. They’ll also have to build a robotic arm and learn how to code for electrical and computer engineering.

“Mechanical engineering involves a bottle rocket experiment where the students fill a bottle with water and shoot it as far as they can,” said Basantis.

Rowan officials hope that through these experiences the high school students will have a better understanding of what type of engineering discipline they should rise to and study for their higher education. 

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