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Diversity in Engineering Education

September 12th, 2013

Diversity is important in all aspects of society, including the world of education. Even with the introduction of a variety of international educational programs tailored to encourage the participation of minorities, the percentages show that more could be taking advantage of the opportunities presented to them.

Trying to Foster Cultural Exchange at an International Level

Meaningful cultural exchange improves the process of education by introducing different perspectives and experiences. Increasing Diversity in International Careers: Economic Challenges and Solutions, a recent study from the Institute of International Education (IIE) reveals that more can be done to increase minority participation in these programs.

“Although an unprecedented 3.7 million students around the world currently cross international borders to obtain a higher education and an international experience, participation by American minority students in international education opportunities and in international careers has not witnessed a similar growth,” the IIE survey concluded.

Diversity Abroad is an organization formed to connect minority students and young professionals with overseas educational opportunities. Their founder, Andrew Gordon, agrees with the IIE study. “Ethnic and minority students and those with high financial needs aren’t participating in international programs in proportionate numbers. All students should have an opportunity to participate in education abroad programs, so the playing field will be more level upon graduation,” said Gordon.

Taking Advantage of the Available Scholarship Money

Significant scholarship money is available for diverse students looking to take advantage of these copious international education opportunities. The IIE administers The Benjamin A. Gilman International Scholarship Program, which is funded by the U.S. State Department. This program has awarded over 10,000 scholarships since 2001; largely for students involved in fields within the STEM disciplines.

IIE President Allan Goodman feels international education is a vital aspect of making a better planet. “International education is one of the best tools for developing mutual understanding and building connections between people from different countries. It is critical to the success of American diplomacy and business, and the lasting ties that Americans make during their international studies are important to our country in times of conflict as well as times of peace,” said Goodman.

If you want to take advantage of these international educational opportunities to further your engineering career, be sure to talk to the experts at The Talley Group. One of the leading engineering recruiting companies in the Seattle area, they have the staff on hand to help you explore continuing your education and taking your career to the next level. If you are looking for a career in engineering, contact the Talley Group today.

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