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Florida Polytechnic University Wins Grant to Develop Ethics in STEM Fields


When you think of the professional engineering field, ethics may not be the first thing that comes to mind. However, when professional engineers work on projects in the classroom or out in the real world, they have an obligation to focus on human health and well-being. A professional engineer’s priority should be on public safety, so if they create dangerous roads, buildings and other products, they can be held liable, putting their license and livelihood at risk.

In recent years, ethics has been an area of concern, especially in the engineering field, where technology is always evolving. Florida Polytechnic University recently received a $600,000 grant to help understand the role of ethics in the STEM field, including engineering. This federal grant from the National Science Foundation (NSF) will be used in a research setting to analyze ethical behavior in an academic setting and what barriers exist. The study will assess the students’ ethical attitudes and actions and in what ways these ethical attitudes continue as the students graduate and enter the engineering workforce.

The teachers and staff at Florida Polytechnic University want to offer students the absolute best in terms of technical training. However, even the best education is useless if the students are unaware of how to practice professional engineering in an ethical manner. There is a lot of pressure in the field, and that is how unethical behavior starts. With the right training, students have the skills to better discern what is and what is not ethical.

This grant is the largest that Florida Polytechnic University has ever received. It will fund a four-year program focused on student internships. Approximately 60 engineering students will participate in the research. The research will cover various aspects, such as surveys, case studies, ethical trainings and open discussions on different ethical scenarios. Researchers will gather data and use it to see how these factors impact students’ ethical actions and reactions.

Academic institutions have an obligation to teach students the importance of ethics. The more they more, they more successful they can become upon graduation. Therefore, the goal is to develop a methodology that can be used by colleges and universities across the country to assess ethical competence as a core skill among professional engineering students.

The research is a collaborative effort between Florida Polytechnic University and the University of South Florida (USF).

Keep Your License With Help From a Tampa Professional Engineers Licensing Lawyer 

Ethics play a huge role in the field of professional engineering. Technology is often involved, and while this can improve human life in many ways, sometimes it comes at a cost. Engineering errors have caused serious injuries and even death.

If you are facing issues with your professional engineers license, seek help from Tampa professional engineers licensing lawyer David P. Rankin. He can help resolve your disciplinary matter quickly. He has represented more than 100 professional engineers before the Florida Board of Professional Engineers. To schedule a consultation, call (813) 968-6633 or fill out the online form.