Tuesday, July 21, 2009
“ASCEville”: Where Civil Engineering meets ‘Awesome!’
National Engineering Society Develops New Web site to Teach Kids about the Exciting Role Civil Engineering Plays in Their Daily Lives
Reston, Va.— Explore civil engineering projects that are changing the world. Learn about creative people like Stacey, who designed an airport runway and worked on it at night. Have fun designing a bridge that can withstand a strong earthquake. Where, you might ask? At ASCEville, of course.
ASCEville.org, the new kid-friendly Web site developed by the American Society of Civil Engineers (ASCE), encourages kids to explore the impact of civil engineering in the world around them and see the exciting challenges that civil engineers experience in their jobs. The site, which joins ASCE’s extensive educational outreach programming, marks the Society’s first online presence dedicated to engaging kids in an interactive look at the profession of civil engineering.
The site is designed to show that civil engineering is creative, rewarding and plays an important role in our everyday life. Through engaging graphics, interactive activities and compelling stories of inspiring young engineers, the site offers a fresh approach. During their visit to the site, kids will meet engineers such as Ken Maschke, who worked on the Chicago Cubs practice facility to make the structure stronger, or they might challenge themselves in one of several labs exploring ways to repair civil engineering structures, such as tunnels and dams.
Kids, parents, educators, and school counselors will also find valuable information about the history of engineering, engineering disciplines and career fields. And, while convincing students to choose civil engineering as a career is not the primary purpose of the site, informal surveying of students in several fourth through seventh-grade classes who had explored the site showed that children are coming away with a better understanding about the meaningful role of civil engineering in people’s daily lives.
“We’re providing children with a fun, online village where they can see how civil engineers make a difference in our world,” says D. Wayne Klotz, P.E., D.WRE, the president of ASCE. “It’s important to get kids plugged in to the world of engineering today because we are counting on these young people and their imaginations to help us create bold solutions for the challenges we face tomorrow.”
Parents, teachers and engineers will come away from the site with a variety of valuable resources they can use to help them engage kids in conversations about civil engineering. There are links to engineering shows such as PBS’ Go Kids network Design Squad, a popular design show featuring kid contestants competing for college scholarships by creating solutions to engineering challenges; and there are full color, downloadable activity guides, lesson plans, handouts, and brochures for use in the classroom and after school activities. All resources are identified according to appropriate age level. Adults will find these resources invaluable in introducing kids to engineering concepts and putting them in touch with familiar examples of the work civil engineers do.
To visit ASCEville, go to: www.asceville.org.
Founded in 1852, the American Society of Civil Engineers (ASCE) represents more than 146,000 civil engineers worldwide and is America’s oldest national engineering society. For more information, visit www.asce.org.