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"I Love People, but I Hate Technology": Examining How Youth Make Meaning of Engineering Experiences

Sun, April 11, 10:40am to 12:10pm EDT (10:40am to 12:10pm EDT), Division C, Division C - Section 1e: Engineering and Computer Science Paper and Symposium Sessions


Despite ongoing efforts to engage diverse populations of young people in engineering, few youths from non-dominant backgrounds pursue engineering in their college careers. The field of engineering remains one of the least diverse, inclusive, or accessible STEM fields. In response, this qualitative study longitudinally analyzes how seven focal youth from non-dominant backgrounds engage with engineering practices and talk about their experiences in a community engineering program. The analyses document ways youth make meaning of their engineering experiences in their personal lives. I consider tensions that emerge from narrow understandings of the discipline. Findings suggest design considerations for youth engineering experiences, (re)imagining ways to support youth engineering work both to sustain and expand identities and skills.