NSF ATE funds both Projects and Centers. Here are the currently funded NSF ATE projects and Centers in Florida. If you are interested in any of the activities described below, please connect via the email. IF you are interested in pursuing NSF ATE funding for a project at your college, contact FLATE (firstname.lastname@example.org) and check the following resources: www.nsf.gov/ate and www.teachingtechnicians.org
(Look for “help for ATE PIs”)
Southeastern Advanced Cybersecurity Education Consortium (ACE)
Daytona State College
Grant # 1204800
(Principal Investigator) Philip Craiger email@example.com
ACE Consortium, composed of ten colleges from Florida, Georgia, and South and North Carolina, whose goals include serving as a leader for cyberforensics education and workforce development in the Southeastern region. The consortium will further cybersecurity education broadly. The current project involves the development of distance-delivered, hands-on cyberforensics courses, with core knowledge, skills, and competencies based on multiple sources, including those developed by the Department of Defense Cyber Crime Center, NIST, and existing ATE Centers. The courses are being disseminated to interested colleges to address the evolving, converging, and emerging technical workplace and new technologies.
SpaceTEC, as a National Aerospace Resource Center, has created an infrastructure for a nationally-recognized performance-based certification process for aerospace and aviation technicians. With industry and government support, the knowledge and skill sets are developed on which the certification exams are based. Professional development is provided for examiners and college faculty. Articulation agreements are coordinated. The certifications provide information to college faculty about the competencies the industry requires of technicians so that curricula can be modified. The Center also expands its repository of materials to include NASA education and training materials and industry subject matter experts and increases services to veterans and under-employed technicians.
Developing a 21st Century Training Program in the Florida Keys for Renewable Alternative Energy Technology: Wind, Solar and Tidal Power
Florida Keys Community College
Grant # 1601440
(Principal Investigator) Patrick Rice firstname.lastname@example.org
Florida Keys Community College (FKCC) is ideally located in one of the sunniest, windiest and tidal energy rich cities in the US. This project at FKCC will install of an Associate in Science degree for Engineering Technology that will focus on Alternative Energy Technicians. As FKCC trains the 21st Century workforce for green energy, conducts research to harness the surrounding renewable energy resources and develops a global network devoted to fostering the renewable energy industry, the Engineering Technology Alternative Energy Technicians (ET-AET) program will be at the epicenter as will its 17,000 square meter research lagoon that will be used as a tidal energy simulation laboratory (TESLA).
This project builds on a prior NSF ATE grant (Award DUE-1104234, “iNoVATE: A Network Virtualization Project”), which resulted in the creation of a Network Virtualization technical certificate, over 100 community college faculty completing professional development in network virtualization, and over 100 students enrolled in newly developed network virtualization courses. The new project will create online curricula for five courses that align with the Microsoft Certified Solutions Expert (MCSE) server infrastructure certification, along with two additional courses, “Virtual Internship” and “Virtual Capstone.” Major project activities include (1) designing, implementing, and disseminating the curriculum for the new Network Enterprise Administration certificate; (2) expanding Network Enterprise Administration labs; (3) developing and offering workshops and other faculty resources; and (4) disseminating project information and resources.
Assessing Information Technology Educational Pathways that Promote
Florida State University
Grant # 1304382
(Principal Investigator) Charles McClure email@example.com
Chipola College, Tallahassee Community College, and nonmetropolitan industry leaders join with Florida State University Information Use Management and Policy Institute and School of Library and Information Studies to examine the educational and career pathways of information technology (IT) technicians supporting broadband deployment in Northwest Florida. The mixed methods research project investigates the region’s broadband staffing needs to identify the roles of broadband technicians, education needed and skills to be successful in these roles, and the process to sustain long-lasting partnerships between educational and industry stakeholders. The study will provide 1) a gap analysis that supports curriculum development; 2) a network of nonmetropolitan stakeholders that includes employers, industries, community institutions, and technician educators; 3) an iterative curriculum/labor needs assessment; 4) multiple faculty/industry workshops; and 5) activities that supports broad dissemination of the findings.
FLATE: Florida’s Advanced Technological Education Center of Excellence
Hillsborough Community College
Grant # 1204751
(Principal Investigator) Marilyn Barger firstname.lastname@example.org
The Florida Advanced Technological Education (FLATE) Center is a statewide ATE Regional Center for Advanced Technological Education that supports manufacturing and its related technology sectors. This project includes three goals as an extension and expansion of FLATE’s efforts to: implement a statewide unified education system for manufacturing so that manufacturing education is a convergent curriculum that optimizes technician preparation; provide an effective outreach platform for high school, community college, industry, and legislature access, providing information about the requirement for and impact of manufacturing education in Florida; and present professional development opportunities for STEM educators to develop, refine, and certify their knowledge within manufacturing and its enabling technologies. FLATE makes a significant impact on the broader aspects of technical education in Florida. It has developed a method for filtering course, certificate, and degree program content that the Florida Department of Education has delegated to FLATE to apply to new Engineering Technology- based program submissions. FLATE has demonstrated an effective way for community colleges to work directly with Workforce Florida – supported Banner Centers in order to optimize technical workforce education and training efforts statewide.
This project is developing, disseminating, and maintaining activities that broadly promote and disseminate the impact and outcomes of the Centers supported through the Advanced Technological Education (ATE) Program. The goal is to inform stakeholders of the resources and services offered through the coalition of ATE centers. The overall outcome is a community that makes informed decisions and takes informed actions to promote and support technician education and a competitive workforce in the United States. The project objectives include: print publications, an interactive website, branded displays, and joint ATE Center exhibits at both national and regional meetings. These activities are: increasing decision makers’ and influencers’ knowledge of ATE program activities and accomplishments; raising other educators’ awareness of ATE resources and services; cultivating new partnerships to advance initiatives important to the nation’s technological workforce and STEM education; and creating a distinct and national brand for the advanced technological education centers and projects that receive support from the National Science Foundation. The broader impacts of the project are significant. The website, print publications, and joint center exhibits emphasize the range of disciplines supported by the centers. These efforts support the entire ATE community and further disseminate the program outcomes to new audiences.
Regional Center For Nuclear Energy Education and Training (RC-NET)
Indian River State College
Grant # 1104238
(Principal Investigator) Kevin Cooper email@example.com
Indian River State College established a Regional Center for Nuclear Education and Training (RC-NET). The Center ensures the demand for skilled nuclear technicians is met in a unified, systematic way in the Southeastern United States. Some of the goals of RC-NET are to create a comprehensive curriculum for technician tracks, develop or enhance training programs at the regional colleges, provide career paths to higher education and undergraduate research, and provide remote access to expensive and unique training components. This Regional Center serves the nuclear industry as a training resource, curriculum repository, and source of expertise, while improving communications and collaboration across the industry. RC-NET is supported by partnerships with colleges across the region. Highly qualified minority and female students are targeted to continue their education through scholarships, summer bridge programs, 2/3 articulation, and undergraduate research opportunities.
This project is establishing a regional laser and fiber optic (LFO) technology center to serve states in the southeastern United States. It is working with a network of 10 colleges and more than 250 companies. Goals are 1. Continue study of the specific technician needs of the laser and fiber optic industry in the southeast and establish education programs and strategies, priorities and timelines to satisfy these needs. 2. Better define the specific area of focus for each partner college and create education programs with the college. 3. Expand the coalition of partner colleges. 4. Enlist faculty and industry representatives to direct the Center’s activities. 5. Create an outreach education program for middle and high school science teachers, counselors and administrators. 6. Recruit and assist returning veterans and minorities to enter LFO programs.
Enhancing an Energy Technology Associate Degree Program to Meet Employer Needs
Lake-Sumter State College
Grant # 1601875
(Principal Investigator) Eugene Jones JonesE@lssc.edu
This project at Lake Sumter State College (LSSC) in Florida is designed to meet the labor force needed for Electrical Substation and Protective Relay Technology (ESPRT). Through strategic recruitment students will enter a pathway that will result in a paid-summer internship and high skill, high wage employment.
The primary objectives of ESPT are to:
- Upgrade program course content and materials;
- Strengthen partnerships between industry partners, educational institutions, FLATE and ATEEEC for program growth and improvement;
- Inform targeted populations about careers in energy systems protection and control;
- Recruit and enroll no less than 20 students into the ESPRT Program annually;
- Focus on student retention, completion, placement, and workforce needs.
Manufacturing Certifications for Rural High School Students through Community College Dual Enrollmentm (ACE)
North Florida Community College
Grant # 1566545
(Principal Investigator) David Dunkle firstname.lastname@example.org
North Florida, like other rural areas, must adequately prepare the next generation of skilled technicians in the sector of advanced manufacturing. Participants who secure high-paying jobs can support themselves and contribute to the growth and prosperity of the community. This project at North Florida Community College (NFCC) is designed to develop an advanced manufacturing dual enrollment project with Madison County high school students. The project will result in career pathways leading from two local high schools to the community college to employment. This project will include dual enrollment (DE), career and technical education (CTE), industry partnerships, and soft skills development. This unique combination of project components is designed to meet the specific needs of rural high school students and rural manufacturing companies. Project findings will be disseminated and can serve as a model for other rural communities nationwide. A comprehensive evaluation will document successes and guide project development.
The “InnovATE” project at Palm Beach State College (PBSC) will increase graduates in STEM disciplines, particularly underrepresented minorities and women, in response to demand for local, highly-skilled workforce needs in the power, aerospace, and manufacturing industries. Synergistic programs are increasing awareness of STEM in middle through high schools, strengthening math skills, and developing a pathway for associate and baccalaureate high-tech degrees. These programs include: a STEM outreach program impacting 1680 middle and secondary students; a summer program for incoming students to complete the Production Technician Certification earning 15 college credits; a contextualized Intermediate Algebra gateway course to improve math proficiency; intensive academic support for math/science; and articulation agreements to baccalaureate degrees.
The goals of the project are to increase the quantity and capacity of industry needed, qualified cybersecurity technicians in the workforce. The college is accomplishing this by:
Expanding the cybersecurity curriculum offered by the Networking Services Technology program at Santa Fe College to include an 18 credit hour cybersecurity certificate and an introductory cyber awareness and cyber safety module which is being taught in all entry-level information technology courses both at the college level and at the secondary level.
- Increasing the diversity of the Networking Services Technology (NST) student population
- Developing and strengthening career pathways from local secondary and rural vocational schools.
- Providing professional development opportunities for college faculty and collaborating secondary school teachers.
Online Technical Education in ATE-Funded Programs: Building Evidence-Based Practice Recommendations
Santa Fe College
Grant # 1501541
(Principal Investigator) Cheryl Calhoun email@example.com
With national spotlights on community colleges, the need for technicians in advance technological fields in STEM, and the significant promise of online education, this research project will identify and synthesize what has been learned through efforts at developing and implementing online courses and course components in technical/technician education in science, technology, engineering, and mathematics (STEM), with a particular emphasis on development and implementation projects supported by the National Science Foundation’s Advanced Technological Eduation program (ATE). The research team will investigate how the implementation and use of online education can or does profoundly change the institutional culture and structure of teaching and learning. Data collection consists of in-depth semi-structured interviews with faculty and key personal and structured document analysis.
This qualitative research study examines the promise of online education for technicians in advanced technological fields in STEM. The goal of the research study is to synthesize what has been learned about online technical education in ATE project and make connections to the broader literature about what works and what does not work in online technical education. The research team will ensure the credibility, dependability, and confirmability of the research findings through an iterative process consisting of triangulation, peer debriefing, and member checking. Data triangulation involves collecting data with multiple methods. Peer debriefing involves an outside reviewer examining the data from transcripts of interviews and focus groups and document analyses to ensure that findings and conclusions represent the perceptions/perspectives of the research participants. Member checking requires that researchers share their findings with research participants to ensure that information was interpreted correctly.
EMERGE – Establishing a Means for Effective Renewabale/Green Energy
Seminole State College of Florida
Grant # 1501486
(Principal Investigator) Stephen Summers firstname.lastname@example.org
This project contributes to the study of science and engineering education by addressing the research question, “Do project-based learning instructional strategies integrated with sustainability content have an impact on student enrollment and retention in STEM college credit certificates and degrees?” Research-informed activities will focus on the development and pilot testing of several coordinated strategies: (1) providing secondary students with opportunities to earn industry certifications by incorporating a replicable Sustainable Engineering certificate within an Early College dual enrollment program; (2) increasing general science knowledge and interest in STEM by offering relevant sustainability courses to both scientist/technicians and non-science college majors; and (3) meeting workforce and societal needs by engaging students in learning sustainability content, embedded within multiple STEM degree and certificate programs.
Project objectives and outcomes include: (1) developing a new 18 credit hour/6 course Sustainable Engineering certificate containing specializations tied to industry certifications; (2) increasing enrollment in Sustainable Engineering courses; (3) increasing the number of students pursing the embedded Sustainable Engineering certificate as part of their degree program; and (4) increasing knowledge of scientists/technicians and non-scientists exposed to sustainable/renewable concepts. Outcomes will further support the development of replicable models for STEM student success, and will impact the training of the future science and technology workforce, increasing participation among underrepresented groups and those empowered by their knowledge about green technology.
Enhancing Critical Reasoning in Computer Education
St. Johns River State College
Grant # 1565586
(Principal Investigator) John Etienne email@example.com
Working with industry partners, this project at Saint Johns River State College in Florida will increase the practical knowledge, critical thinking skills, and work-readiness of computer science and information technology (CS/IT) graduates to meet local industry demand for highly trained technicians in Northeast Florida by incorporating problem-based learning (PBL) and emphasizing critical thinking throughout the computer education curriculum. Incorporation of PBL in CS/IT is also designed to increase participation, retention, and success of women. The program will leverage student talent to address current community problems and expose students to the need for CS/IT in fields outside the traditional industries by incorporating community-based learning techniques in the capstone course. The project will be disseminated through the project website, ATE Central, and an annual Curriculum Showcase. Curriculum projects will be available for use and adaption by other CS/IT programs.
OP-TEC: The National Center for Optics and Photonics Education
University of Central Florida
Grant # 1303732
(Principal Investigator) Daniel Hull firstname.lastname@example.org
OP-TEC’s mission is to build the capacity of U.S. two-year colleges to provide the quality and quantity of photonics technicians needed in this critical field. To date the center has: Developed seven exemplary Partner Colleges that serve as models, mentors, test sites and regional leaders in specialized photonics technician areas; Launched four Regional Photonics Clusters of employers and colleges, using Partner Colleges for leadership; Supported nine colleges in initiating new photonics AAS degree programs; Assisted five colleges to restore declining or closed photonics programs; Worked with 108 colleges to plan new programs; and Developed a strategy for increasing the number of high school students who enter the optics and photonics field. In addition the center has conducted faculty development, developed curricular material, and has begun work developing a program for precision optics.
PathTech LIFE: Constructing a National Survey of Engineering Technology Students through Regional and Statewide Testing
University of South Florida
Grant # 1501999
(Principal Investigator) William Tyson email@example.com
Southeastern Advanced Cybersecurity Education Consortium (ACE)
Daytona State College
Grant # 1204800
(Principal Investigator) Philip Craiger firstname.lastname@example.org
PathTech LIFE will contribute to the national policy discussion on the role of community colleges and the importance of advanced technological fields in maintaining the global competitiveness of the nation’s STEM workforce. Through the development of a national survey and associated research, the project is designed to identify the characteristics of students in the advanced technological field of engineering technology (ET), their academic pathways, career goals, and school-work-life balance issues that impact their decisions to enroll in and complete ET courses, return for further ET coursework, and/or pursue a certificate or degree. Furthermore, the project will determine the generalizability of the qualitatively-based models developed during an earlier, first phase of the research, which has been supported by an ATE targeted research award.
The partially mixed-methods sequential equal-status research design and instrument development are based on the PRiSM (Pathway to better life; Reflective learner; Synchronizing learning, earning, and living; Match with an academic life) Decision Model for Adult Enrollment; Schlossberg’s Transition Theory from counseling; and the explanatory models developed during the first phase of the research. The project will employ ordinal least squares regression and multilevel regression techniques along with hierarchical linear modeling to examine and model the relationships among demographics and background factors and the outcomes under investigation. The project will test and revise the survey instrument based on results from factor analyses, tests of reliability and validity, and expert peer review.
Broadening Education, Access, and Momentum (BEAM) in Energy Management and Controls Technology
Valencia Community College
Grant # 1601403
(Principal Investigator) Lisa Macon Lmacon@valenciacollege.edu
To meet a growing need for trained technicians in energy building automation, Valencia College will develop an Associate in Science degree program in Energy Management and Controls Technology, per regional industry demand. The new program will offer rigorous technical courses taught in creative ways, in particular, using Valencia College’s facilities as a living laboratory. Along with a fully equipped laboratory designed to build technical skills and competencies on specific industry equipment, the hands-on living lab will include learning outcomes targeting buildings, construction, and land use. Deliverables include: (1) creation of state curriculum frameworks, (2) modifying of three existing courses, and (3) developing nine new courses. Career pathways will also be developed for students entering from the local school districts.
NSF ATE Centers in Florida:
- ACE m- Cyberforensic Technology http://www.daytonastate.edu/ace/
- FLATE – Advanced Manufacturing www.fl-ate.org & www.madeinflorida.org
- LASER TEC Laser and Fiber Optics Technology
- OP-TEC – Photonics Technology
- RCNET – Nuclear Technology
- SpaceTEC – Aerospace Technology