Message from Coordinator: Engineering Policy and Society
There is an increasing need for professionals and educators in the field of engineering to integrate social considerations into their work and practice, whether it is assessing the implications of new technologies on an individual’s civil/privacy rights or developing engineering solutions that have potential impacts on the environment. As such, TCNJ’s School of Engineering has incorporated aspects of Engineering for Social Justice within its curriculum. Engineering for Social Justice examines the development of structures, devices, technologies, and methods that address problems relevant to environmental concerns, public policy, social contexts, legal and ethical implications, and global policy. How may engineering be used to improve the lives of the disadvantaged and the underrepresented? One example is the development of low-cost energy generation and information access technologies for third-world countries.
In the Policy & Society Specialization, students take a robust mix of mechanical and electrical engineering coursework, coupled with additional courses grounded in the political and social sciences. This coursework can be chosen from a wide array of topics, enabling great flexibility to either sample from many fields or specialize in a specific area such as environmental, public policy, social justice, legal, or political themes. Students also complete an internship which may be taken locally or in Washington DC. Like with all School of Engineering programs, a senior capstone experience is required under this specialization, in which students work as part of an engineering team to design and fabricate a complex engineering system. This educational option would serve well students that want to pursue an accredited and licensable engineering degree program, but provides the flexibility to work in either traditional engineering roles or in para-technical fields in government agencies; such as FBI, NSA, CIA, NIH, DOE, DOD, or in roles involving the bridging of engineering solutions with policy. The program also serves well students who want to pursue an engineering degree prior to entering law school.
TCNJ’s engineering programs offer a caring learning environment, enhanced by high quality faculty, staff, facilities, and equipment; individualized attention from highly qualified professors, no teaching assistants and small class sizes. The environment includes exceptional instruction; frequent opportunities for relevant laboratory experience; practice of communication, design, and teamwork skills; and the challenge of undertaking realistic engineering projects.
Lisa Grega, Ph.D.