IUPUI Grant Aims to Boost Creativity in Engineering

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The IUPUI School of Engineering and Technology plans to use a more than $450,000 grant from the National Science Foundation for a new pilot program. The university says the goal is to boost the creativity and problem-solving skills of graduate-level engineering students. In an interview on Inside INdiana Business Television, Associate Professor Sohel Anwar said the program provides a unique combination of engineering and the arts.

The grant will support a new design track in the university's master's program in mechanical engineering. IUPUI says three new multidisciplinary courses and a new graduate certificate program will be developed by the School of Engineering and Technology. Anwar says the key to the new track will be the "integration of the foundational elements of creativity and innovation into an engineering, technology and arts pilot program."

Anwar says there is a gap between what corporations need and what universities produce in terms of the graduate student population. "They are frustrated at the fact that, when students come from the university, they're not particularly able to solve difficult problems and that hinders their ability to get ahead. This method will help us prepare our graduate students to get that edge."

The IU School of Art and Design in Bloomington and the IU Ernestine M. Raclin School of the Arts in South Bend are partnering on the project as well. The university says it expects new publications, invention disclosures and copyrighted materials to come out of the project.

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