At the University of North Dakota College of Engineering and Mines, working together on projects is important due to the size of our college. We have over twelve different clubs in the college and they are all small. E-Council was created to connect all the clubs, prevent overlapping, and help each other with various projects, as well as serving as a collegiate section of the North Dakota Society of Professional Engineers. This gives us a more productive and efficient way for the clubs to interact with the community and within the college itself.
At E-Council meeting, a representative from each clubs announces current projects they are working on, and other pertinent news. They can also request help on various projects, such as man power, ideas, or financial assistance. E-Council itself might decide to take on a project as its own, if it is felt to be a more general project between clubs and would benefit from a united front from all the engineering clubs.
Since our SWE group is relatively small, we use E-Council to help on various projects we have maintained over the years. During E-Week, SWE has gone around speaking to K-12 classrooms about various opportunities in engineering and answering what questions they might have. Our community has appreciated this to the point that we go to over 30 classrooms each year during E-Week. Due to such a large number of classrooms, E-Council provides us with volunteers so that we are able to go to all classrooms that request us. SWE will organize the entire event, schedule the visits, and come up with the presentations to keep the kids interacted and engaged in the presentations.
For younger kids, we create an activity to visually show the kids what engineers do and to engage them in our presentation. We choose a simple, low-cost project because of the sheer number of kids we talk to at one time and in total. This year we helped them make pin wheels and talked about what went into designing them and why they were made a certain way.
For the high school students, we focus more on the specific thing that they could do as an engineer and what a degree in engineering will give them. We present a general overview of the engineering disciplines, talk about our personal experiences in the engineering field, and end with a question session.
We also use E-Council to gather ideas, gain insight on good projects to do for our own outreach events, and to support team work. We are very proud of all we have accomplished as such a small section at UND. E-Council has been a great resource to us as a club and has helped us to reach the heights we have.
This post was written by the University of North Dakota SWE Section. If you have any questions about these events or their section please email: Traci at email@example.com