The National Science Foundation has awarded a $150,000 grant to three UGA faculty members from engineering, art and education to develop and implement a synthesis studio sequence for undergraduate environmental engineering.
The studio setting, beginning this semester, will allow students from different levels to interact and integrate individual courses into the more complex educational experience.
“We hope to encourage first-year engineering students by introducing design elements into the curriculum earlier and utilizing third- and fourth-year students as mentors,” said Nadia Kellam, assistant professor of engineering and principal investigator on the grant.
Tracie Costantino, an assistant professor of art education in the Lamar Dodd School of Art, and Bonnie Cramond of the College of Education are co-principal investigators on the grant.
“There is a synergy between art and engineering that has not been fully explored and a real need for interdisciplinary studies in undergraduate education,” said Costantino who met Kellam when both were Lilly Teaching Fellows at UGA, a program that nurtures collaboration among innovative young faculty. The two teamed with Cramond, former director of the Torrance Center for Creativity and Talent Development, to bring expertise to the research facet of the grant investigating creativity as a component of the new classroom setting.