Scholarships have been awarded to seven students at Lawrence Technological University and five at Monroe County Community College (MCCC) under a scholarship program funded by the National Science Foundation (NSF) to address the need for more engineers for the power industry.
The five MCCC scholarship recipients are expected to enroll at Lawrence Tech within the next year.
As a result, the full five-year grant of $598,000 for the Scholarship in Science, Technology, Engineering and Mathematics (S-STEM) program has been approved based on the results during the first year under the leadership of Assistant Professor Kun Hua of the Department of Electric and Computer Engineering.
Thanks to the NSF grant, Lawrence Tech is offering $10,000 scholarships for two years to community college graduates to complete a bachelor’s degree in electrical engineering with a power engineering concentration. Community college students working on their associate degree in this area also qualify.
Responding to an impending national shortage of power engineers needed for the nation’s electricity production plants and distribution system, last year NSF awarded LTU the five-year grant to provide scholarship assistance to students in this field.
Power engineers develop, maintain, and modernize “the Grid,” the vast network of transformers, generators, motors and electronics that supply electrical power.
LTU’s S-STEM scholarship recipients gain additional knowledge about the power industry from outside speakers, field trips and participation in professional organizations. Internships and job placement are also part of the scholarship program.
“LTU is leveraging its network of local and regional partnerships to aid in the recruitment, retention, and job placement of the S-STEM scholars,” said Hua, the S-STEM advisor.
One of those partners is DTE Energy, which has a specific need to hire more nuclear engineers for its Enrico Fermi Nuclear Generating Station near Monroe. DTE Energy worked with Monroe County Community College in developing the associate degree in nuclear engineering technology, and graduates of that program are eligible for the scholarship program to continue their studies at LTU.