Discipline: Technology and Engineering
Subcategory: Social Sciences/Psychology/Economics
Jessica Whipple - Kennesaw State University
Co-Author(s): Shelbie Prater, University of Michigan, Ann Arbor
Existing research studies provide an overview of programmatic outcomes of academic intervention programs that target underrepresented minority populations, but lack empirical evidence about the personal experiences of program participants. To address this deficit, in summer 2017, we conducted a pilot study in which we examined the experiences and attitudes of participants of the University of Michigan at Ann Arbor’s Wolverine Pathways (WP) program. Wolverine Pathways is an academic intervention program serving high school students from metro Detroit. Specifically, the study population (n=13) consisted of 11th graders who participated in a weeklong, engineering and healthcare focused summer camp held at the Ann Arbor campus. In this research inquiry, we used an explanatory mixed methods approach to collect quantitative data (pre- and post-surveys) and qualitative data (semi-structured interviews). Descriptive statistics was used to draw inferences from the data. Then, interview data was analyzed to identify trends and insights. Preliminary results indicated that participants completed the program with more positive attitudes toward engineering. Future research will focus on increasing the numbers and diversity of the sample population by including participants from other grade levels to provide a comparative analysis of participants’ experiences across various ages.Not Submitted
Funder Acknowledgement(s): The University of Michigan
Faculty Advisor: Dr. Joi-Lynn Mondisa, email@example.com
Role: In this summer research, I participated in creating the literature review, collecting the qualitative data and analyzing both the quantitative and qualitative data. I analyzed the qualitative data using descriptive statistics to create inferences from the students' opinions before and after completing the Wolverine Pathways camp. Given a script approved from my faculty advisor, I performed half of the semi-structured interviews. I transcribed a portion of these interviews and combined all the transcribed interviews to look for themes to support the results shown from the quantitative data.