Friday, January 25, 2019

The University of Iowa College of Engineering is partnering with Engineer Your World (EYW) at the University of Texas at Austin to provide hands-on engineering experiences to high school students across Iowa.

Engineer Your World has been recognized as one of 10 high-quality STEM programs that will take part in the Iowa Governor’s STEM Scale-Up Program, which is focused on increasing student interest and achievement in STEM (Science, Technology, Engineering, and Mathematics). High schools across the state of Iowa can apply for the STEM Scale-Up Award to cover most startup costs for this innovative high school engineering program.  

Engineer Your World engages learners in collaborative, student-directed projects that foster creative problem-solving and engineering design skills,” says David Rethwisch, professor of chemical and biochemical engineering and faculty director of Iowa EYW. “This course is designed to teach the value of collaborating to solve complex, real-world problems and create a strong foundation for future STEM learning.”

As part of the program, educators will take part in a two-week professional development institute at the UI July 8-19 where they will engage in authentic engineering practices, experience the curriculum they will teach, and discover the most effective strategies for project-based instruction. Educators will then take what they have learned into their own classrooms and deliver EYW I: Engineering Design and Analysis. In this hands-on course, students work in multi-level teams to make portable pinhole cameras for artists with disabilities, design earthquake-resistant buildings, and create automated aerial imaging systems for targeted disaster relief efforts. 

“The design skills that these students learn will be invaluable to them if they choose to pursue careers in engineering,” says Rethwisch. “Just as importantly, these students will gain critical thinking and problem-solving skills that will benefit them no matter which career path they find.”

For more information, go to