The Engineers' Alliance for the Arts - Just Amazing!!





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Published on May 13, 2013

Through EAA, design professionals volunteer their time to teach high school students about the art and engineering of bridges during an eight-week education program. The curriculum guides students through a design and construction process that is very similar to a real life bridge project. The design professionals are present each week to help the students prepare for the competition at the end of the program and also to lend some insight into the architecture, engineering, and construction industries.

Since its inception in 1997, EAA has graduated nearly 3500 students with the help of nearly 500 volunteer engineers. This year's program had 37 volunteer engineers in the classroom and more than 70 total volunteers. With creativity and dedication, engineers focus their efforts on urban high schools where the need is greatest, and inspire teenagers to do things they never thought they could do, culminating with an opportunity for them to proudly display and present their bridges in a public forum.

Habibullah remarked, "It is absolutely incredible how these structural engineers, serving as mentors and teachers, are able to instill passion and confidence in young people by introducing them to the artistic and creative aspects of structural engineering. These students are the future of our profession."

At a time when educators are finding that students have difficulty organizing and putting their thoughts onto paper, and when public speaking is a cause of such high anxiety among adults, this program could not offer more valuable lessons and experience. Further, the project begins and ends with art, an oft-overlooked field of study that brings form and grace to the world around us.

Susan Stauter, Artistic Director of the San Francisco Unified School District, added "When I feel sad and overwhelmed about the state of public education, when I worry about how we are going to have a chance at engaging and moving this new tech-savvy generation forward in ways that are inspiring and creative and personal, all I have to do is think about the work of the EAA and watch the EAA YouTube video and it puts me right where I need to be. I have no doubt that there are so many students whose worlds are a bit larger, whose dreams a bit higher and who will think of their own futures in brighter terms because of the work the EAA and the hope that it is providing. Please know that this work saves lives -- because it really does!.

For more information about the EAA, please visit http://www.eaabayarea.org


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