Cincinnati State team presented plans at “PIPE Showcase” to increase enrollment & success of women in engineering

Cincinnati State faculty members and academic administrators presented ideas for increasing enrollment and academic success of women in engineering fields at the PIPE Showcase held May 14, 2024, at Clark State College.

The Ohio Association of Community Colleges (OACC), in collaboration with the National Alliance for Partnerships in Equity (NAPE), provided the PIPE (Program Improvement Process for Equity) program to help teams from 16 Ohio community colleges develop and implement effective approaches to increasing student access and diversity. 

Diagram that illustrates the steps of the PIPE process
The PIPE program process, explained

The PIPE program emphasizes research-based, data-driven decision making designed to bring about institutional change. 

The Ohio PIPE program started in August 2023, with each college bringing a team of faculty members and administrators selected by the Provost. The Cincinnati State team focused on finding ways to increase female enrollment in the Electrical Engineering Technology (EET) program from 11% of students in the major to 25%.

During the 2023-24 academic year, the PIPE teams participated in workshops to examine barriers that underrepresented students face and then develop a structured implementation plan to meet the project goals. 

Doug Bowling, Dean of Engineering and Information Technologies (on left in photo), said Cincinnati State’s plan was “well-received and generated considerable positive feedback” from others in attendance at the May Showcase presentation.

The Cincinnati State team surveyed over 70 female students from 14 high schools who visited the College’s booth at regional recruiting events, and reviewed the EET curriculum as well as current approaches for recruiting and supporting students.

The Cincinnati State team’s plans for the 2024-25 academic year include activities such as:

  • Developing new promotional materials to appeal to women who are prospective EET students
  • Emphasizing the Biomedical Equipment major as a career field that combines interests in healthcare and engineering
  • Offering summer camps for middle school aged girls
  • Improving access to College resources for student support and mentoring
  • Increasing financial support for female students in engineering majors
  • Developing a web page that highlights resources and scholarship opportunities for women in engineering

Along with Dean Bowling, the PIPE team members are:

  • Geraldine Danger, EET instructor
  • Mollie Miller, Director of Institutional Research
  • Crissy Ross, Director of the Library (center of photo)
  • Dr. Ralph Whaley, Program Chair, EET (on right in photo)