Engineering schools tackle “Grand Challenges”

Initiative aims to use engineering to address major global challenges.

engineer-engineeringIn a letter of commitment presented to President Barack Obama at the White House Science Fair on March 23, more than 120 U.S. engineering schools announced plans to tackle some of the most pressing issues facing society in the 21st century.

The initiative could educate a new generation of engineers.

These “Grand Challenges,” identified through initiatives such as the White House Strategy for American Innovation, the National Academy of Engineering Grand Challenges for Engineering and the United Nations Millennium Development Goals, include complex yet critical goals such as engineering better medicines, making solar energy cost-competitive with coal, securing cyberspace and advancing personalized learning tools to deliver better education to more individuals.

(Next page: Five targeted elements in Grand Challenges training)

Laura Ascione