Engineering Technology program at The University of Alabama in Huntsville

Dr. Alisa Henrie, the Director of the Engineering Technology program in the College of Science at The University of Alabama in Huntsville (UAH), a part of the University of Alabama System, recently shared significant updates about the program's developments, providing insights into the program's growth, achievements, new concentrations, providing insights into the program's growth, new concentrations, ABET accreditation on the horizon, recent graduates, and ongoing initiatives.

Dr. Henrie enthusiastically shared the program's success in producing its first batch of graduates. As of 2023, the program within the College of Science has seen seven successful graduates, each making noteworthy strides in their respective fields. The diverse accomplishments of these graduates range from pursuing higher education to securing positions at prestigious companies such as Blue Origin, NASA, and Nucor.

Some graduates have taken unique paths, including ventures into small business ownership. Dr. Henrie acknowledged the program's positive impact on graduates' career opportunities, with employers recognizing and valuing the knowledge and skills gained.

The program takes pride in its diverse student body, with a notable percentage of military and female students. Dr. Henrie emphasized the inclusivity and importance of recognizing each student's diverse experiences and knowledge. The program aims to enhance the transferability of knowledge, allowing students to apply their existing expertise to new challenges and industries.

An existing partnership with Blue Origin includes support for the program's senior capstone projects and the development of lab capabilities. The partnership is facilitated through an industry advisory board, ensuring alignment with industry needs and fostering a strong connection with the sector.

Regarding the financial support from Blue Origin, the program has prioritized enhancing the senior capstone experience and expanding its lab capabilities to provide students with a more interactive and industry-relevant learning environment.

The Engineering Technology program at UAH is exploring adding new concentrations, including manufacturing and electromechanical or mechatronics. Additionally, plans are underway to introduce an engineering technology minor, allowing students from other disciplines to complement their major with relevant engineering coursework.

ABET accreditation is a crucial goal for the program, as it holds significance for students seeking employment, especially in the engineering sector. Dr. Henrie clarified the importance of ABET accreditation to companies, which often prioritize candidates from accredited programs in the hiring process. The accreditation process involves thorough assessment by experienced professionals, and the program is diligently working towards meeting all requirements and documentation.

Dr. Henrie highlighted ongoing efforts to facilitate knowledge transfer by developing test-out options for experienced individuals, allowing them to demonstrate their proficiency in certain courses. This approach aligns with the program's commitment to respecting and leveraging students' prior experiences.

The Engineering Technology program at UAH, under the leadership of Dr. Alisa Henrie, is witnessing remarkable growth and success. As it continues to evolve, the program remains focused on preparing students for diverse and impactful careers in engineering and technology.