Missouri S&T's Global Studies Minor Development Experience


The Missouri University of Science and Technology is a member of a relatively small number of institutions that focus primarily on engineering studies. The prescriptive nature of ABET-accredited curricula means that the opportunities for undergraduate students to study abroad over either the short or long terms are limited. An interdisciplinary group of faculty members working on international water-related research projects developed a campus-wide undergraduate minor proposal intended to attract students interested in international studies without regard to the students' major fields of study. A critical aspect of the minor was the desire by the originators to have the minor administered independently of any degree program so as to maintain an independent (or "international") spirit. Housing the minor at the campus level instead of the academic department level created a unique set of concerns and challenges which required considerable time to address. The most organized resistance to the minor came from some humanities and social science faculty members. The administration of the minor is thus highly defined, and the three- year plus time period required to formally establish the minor resulted in several lessons learned that may be of interest to others who want to pursue interdisciplinary programs. The minor is currently administered by a group of faculty from engineering, physical and natural sciences, liberal arts, and business degree programs; and it is expected that the 2009-2010 academic year will yield the first generation of students in the minor program.

Meeting Name

World Environmental and Water Resources Congress: Challenges of Change (2010: May 16-20, Providence, RI)


Geosciences and Geological and Petroleum Engineering


Environmental and Water Resources Institute of ASCE

Keywords and Phrases

Engineering education; Undergraduate study; Academic department; Degree program; Faculty members; Interdisciplinary programs; International waters; Lessons learned; Liberal arts; Long term; Missouris; Science and Technology; Study abroad; Time periods; Undergraduate students; Curricula; Engineering education; Water resources

International Standard Book Number (ISBN)


Document Type

Article - Conference proceedings

Document Version


File Type





© 2010 American Society of Civil Engineers (ASCE), All rights reserved.

Publication Date

01 May 2010