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The Battalion

The Student News Site of Texas A&M University - College Station

The Battalion

The Student News Site of Texas A&M University - College Station

The Battalion

Engineer council hopes survey will link students, A&M administration

Engineering students will have the chance to voice their opinion on 25 by 25, study abroad and other topics as the Student Engineers’ Council fall survey kicks off.
The SEC fall survey opened Monday and the survey’s results will be presented to Dwight Look College of Engineering administrators at the semester’s end.
Melinda McClure, chemical engineering senior and SEC president, said the survey provides an important link between engineering students and administration.
“The SEC fall survey is the main way that the Student Engineers’ Council serves as a representative voice for the College of Engineering,” McClure said. “Essentially, we gather student opinion and relay the results of the survey to the deans at the end of each semester.”
The goal of the survey is to gauge student opinion on a range of issues related to both graduate and undergraduate experiences. Topics such as Engineering 25 by 25, an initiative to increase the enrollment of qualified engineering students to 25,000 by 2025, is the survey’s primary focus.
“We’re also going to be talking a lot about study abroad, and outside of school activities,” McClure said. “Engineering student organizations, multidisciplinary projects, a lot of things to get students engaged outside of school.”
The survey will gauge how students react to SEC efforts to spread awareness on different engineering subdisciplines. McClure said this focus was prompted by the Look College’s decision to admit freshmen as general engineering majors instead of into specific degree-granting departments.
“All students in the college of engineering actually come in as general engineers now, and so one thing that the college is starting to do, through the SEC, is [educate] students on various types of engineering — educating them on what aerospace, or what chemical engineering, is,” McClure said. “So we’re trying to get some feedback on those events as well.”
SEC officers form every survey by first looking at the previous survey’s results. General council meetings and input from college advisors help steer the survey towards specific questions that will eventually be posed to the engineering student body.
“There are a lot of things you can ask on a survey, but we want to make sure that what we ask is actionable by the leaders of the [Look College],” McClure said.
The Fall 2014 survey comes after just 2,012 students participated in the previous spring survey — the SEC’s lowest turnout in several years. SEC officers hope to increase participation this year through increased campus visibility. Yard signs and flyers display survey information, and a survey “kickoff” took place Tuesday.
David Yu, SEC legislation chair, said the presentation of the survey’s results to A&M administration at semester’s end influences decisions on the administration level for the upcoming semester.
“The college administration really cares about improving students’ engineering education experience,” Yu said. “Based on students’ responses, the college administration decides whether to take certain measures or make certain changes.”
Tara Givens, mechanical engineering senior, attended the kickoff event Tuesday and said the survey’s promotion was a good idea. Givens said the survey is easy to complete and has important and relevant questions for engineering students.
“It was really easy to do, it asks a lot of pertinent questions about the 25 by 25 plan,” Givens said. “It asks about what we’d like to see, like if we want funds allocated towards research, building redevelopment, having new professors come that are highly ranked, stuff like that.”
The survey runs until Nov. 2. A link to the survey can be accessed at sec.tamu.edu.

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