NSF Research at Carnegie Mellon — EEC-0343760
Educating 21st Century Power Engineers


Project Description
The top American universities are not educating the technical and managerial leaders for much of our infrastructure. While the market has commanded the attention of undergraduate engineers in careers in areas such as computers, information technology, biotechnology, and nanotechnology, programs for the mature industries have withered. Despite the thrill of the new areas, the vast majority of jobs and economic activity are in the mature industries. If no first rate students are trained to assume leadership roles in these industries, the economy will suffer. The lack of adequate education will have long-term impacts on the overall U.S. economy.

We propose to confront this issue by developing a curriculum that will show to undergraduate engineers the exciting, challenging prospects of working in the electricity industry. Using
fundamentals from engineering, computer science, economics, policy and business, we address the challenges in the evolving electric power sector. This program will prepare students to think about complex network industries, including both engineering and business components.

By preparing students to think about the electric power sector in a qualitatively different manner than power engineering subjects have been taught in the past, this program will prepare qualified students to engage in doctoral programs and prepare undergraduates to enter the workforce in this rapidly changing field. Having an educated workforce that appreciates the benefits of advanced technologies on industry performance will create a major application for computers and communications in this seemingly mature industry sector. This approach could provide stimulus in moving the overall economy forward.

Back to home page