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DARE to ExCEL with New Experiential Learning Initiative 


October 26, 2016

DARE to ExCEL project poster presentation

The application process was a competitive one. The University received 41 DARE applications and we are thankful that our DARE, Experiential Learning through the Cooperative Education Lifecycle (ExCEL), was one of the five selected. Our core participants include Drs. Abichandani, Dandekar, Fontecchio, Goldberg, Kontsos, Mongan, Rocheleau, Silverman, Stanford, and Smith.

The ExCEL DARE focuses on an important area of research in STEM education: Experiential learning in which students learn from direct experiences. Opportunities of this type include: mentored research, cooperative education (Co-op), internships, service-learning, volunteering, and study abroad.

We will be focusing on a few interrelated concepts: We will conduct research on best practices in effective experiential learning experiences in STEM, and authentic STEM learning experiences; Provide opportunities for career development and community building centering on STEM education; Develop mechanisms to support long-term sustainability of effective STEM projects; and support STEM education assessment related initiatives both within and outside of Drexel, including co-op. The latter will be prioritized as we assess the impact and visibility this program has on our immediate Philadelphia community.  

The ExCEL DARE presents opportunities to ask questions about the benefits of experiential learning and what makes for a good experiential learning experience.  As other institutions begin to explore ways to incorporate more experiential learning opportunities into their STEM students’ learning experiences, Drexel will have the opportunity to serve as a national model for experiential learning in STEM if it can adequately demonstrate the benefits of its experiential learning programs. 

Email for more information on the ExCEL Dare.