Richard Miller has had one of the toughest jobs in higher education. The Olin Foundation tapped him a dozen years ago to create an engineering college on a hilltop in the Boston suburb of Needham. When Miller started, there were no buildings, no faculty, no curriculum, no students.
The foundation’s mandate: design a boldly original model for a 21st century school whose graduates would be not just accomplished engineers but world-beater entrepreneurs and leaders.
Forty-five percent of your students are women, a much higher proportion than you would find at other top engineering schools. Do you predict that your women graduates will turn out to be leaders and entrepreneurs to the same extent as the men?
This question comes up a lot at board meetings and elsewhere. Gee, it’s unusual that you have so many women here. Is this a good thing? Are the women going to be as successful as the men? So we did a little back-of-the envelope analysis of what we know about the first five graduating classes.
Based on the few metrics that we have already, it turns out that the women are overrepresented—way overrepresented—in success and leadership. For example, Olin is one of the top producers of Fulbright award winners in the country. Something like 80 percent of our Fulbright awards have gone to women. A high proportion of our graduates who are selected to be National Science Foundation fellows are women.The women who are graduating from Olin are doing very well.
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Stop breadboarding and soldering – start making immediately! Adafruit’s Circuit Playground is jam-packed with LEDs, sensors, buttons, alligator clip pads and more. Build projects with Circuit Playground in a few minutes with the drag-and-drop MakeCode programming site, learn computer science using the CS Discoveries class on code.org, jump into CircuitPython to learn Python and hardware together, TinyGO, or even use the Arduino IDE. Circuit Playground Express is the newest and best Circuit Playground board, with support for CircuitPython, MakeCode, and Arduino. It has a powerful processor, 10 NeoPixels, mini speaker, InfraRed receive and transmit, two buttons, a switch, 14 alligator clip pads, and lots of sensors: capacitive touch, IR proximity, temperature, light, motion and sound. A whole wide world of electronics and coding is waiting for you, and it fits in the palm of your hand.