Engineering education includes both classroom training in sciences and professional skills as well as learning-through-doing to integrate practice and engineering design into the future licensed Professional Engineer (PE). In a similar manner, nursing education includes both classroom training in sciences and professional skills as well as learning through doing to integrate practice and caring into the future licensed Registered Nurse (RN). From the mid-19th century until modern day, the fields of environmental engineering and community health nursing have worked side-by-side to prevent disease while promoting health and wellness. This paper provides a synthesis of previously published case studies by the author documenting collaborative learning among environmental engineers and community health nurses. During a decade of working together, Florence Nightingale's Environmental Theory served as the organizing principle for teaching practice to the environmental engineers as facilitated through coaching and interaction with community health nurses. This paper provides a side-by-side comparison of the professions of engineering and nursing, and includes the results of assessments using mixed methods to document the impacts of exposure to nursing practice on the formation of emergent engineers.

Meeting Name

2017 ASEE Annual Conference and Exposition (2017: Jun. 24-28, Columbus, OH)


Civil, Architectural and Environmental Engineering

Keywords and Phrases

Education; Engineers; Health; Medical education; Nursing; Personnel training; Professional aspects; Teaching; Classroom training; Collaborative learning; Engineering and nursing; Engineering design; Engineering practices; Health and wellness; Professional engineer; Professional skills; Engineering education

International Standard Serial Number (ISSN)


Document Type

Article - Conference proceedings

Document Version

Final Version

File Type





© 2017 American Society for Engineering Education (ASEE), All rights reserved.

Publication Date

01 Jun 2017