Geeks are CHIC: Cultural identity and engineering students' pathways to the profession

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Conference Proceeding

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This paper reports findings from a longitudinal study of undergraduate engineering students on their embracing of a campus and disciplinary culture, that of a "geek." In analysis of data from the students' first and second years, researchers examine the development of pre-professional engineering identity within the pseudonymous Mountain Technology Institute (MT or Mountain Tech). Authors speculate that despite widespread enjoyment in the first year of finding others - "geeks"-who share their interests, in the second year, some of MT's undergraduates chafe at the narrowness of their engineering and technology education. Further, the authors postulate that the students who become reluctant to remain geeks throughout their undergraduate careers may be reluctant to remain in the engineering field. © American Society for Engineering Education, 2007.

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