Project Lead the Way
In 2001 there were two PLTW high schools in South Carolina, T.L. Hanna and Westside High Schools in Anderson School District Five with an enrollment of 80 students. In the spring of 2002 the USC College of Engineering and Computing (CEC) made the commitment to become the PLTW Affiliate Partner for South Carolina. During the summer of 2002 two USC CEC faculty attended PLTW course Core Training offered at Rochester Institute of Technology, Rochester, New York. Dr. Ed Young, Mechanical Engineering, was trained as the PLTW Gateway to Technology (GTT) Affiliate Professor, and Dr. Curtis Rhodes, Mechanical Engineering was trained as the PLTW Introduction to Engineering Design (IED) Affiliate Professor. The University of South Carolina became a PLTW National Affiliate Training Center in the summer of 2003 training 6 GTT teachers and 18 IED teachers.
Today the University of South Carolina, College of Engineering and Computing, is one of forty-one Engineering, and ten Biomedical Sciences Project Lead The Way (PLTW) National Affiliates. In 2012 the PLTW Engineering Program in the state has grown to 99 Pathway to Engineering (PTE) high school programs, five PTE post-secondary programs in South Carolina Technical Colleges, 75 Gateway to Technology (GTT) middle school programs, and the Biomedical Sciences (BMS) to 25 programs with an enrollment of over 20,000 students. South Carolina has 378 PLTW teachers, 18 Master Teachers, and eleven Affiliate Professors. Mr. B.T. Martin is the South Carolina PLTW PTE State Leader; Ms. Nancy Allen, PLTW BMS State Leader; Dr. Donald Griffith, BMS and PTE Affiliate Director; and Ms. Krystal Dubose, BMS and PTE Assistant Affiliate Director. Initiatives and accomplishments to date are as follows:
The annual South Carolina PLTW Engineering and Biomedical Sciences Summer Teacher Institute (STI) is delivered by the University to provide PLTW teachers “Core Training” prior to teaching a PLTW course. South Carolina PLTW Core Training Instructors (CTI’s) team-teach CTI courses with a USC PLTW Affiliate Professor. South Carolina Core Training Instructors (SCCTI) have been trained, or are being trained for all 10 Engineering and 4 Biomedical Sciences Core Training courses delivered at USC. Five SCCTI’s have been trained for the middle school Gateway To Technology (GTT) Basic and Advanced courses; Two SCCTI’s have been trained for the foundation pre-engineering high school courses: Introduction to Engineering Design (IED) and Principles of Engineering (POE). One SCCTI has been trained for Aerospace Engineering (AE), Biotechnical Engineering (BE), Computer Integrated Engineering (CIM), Civil Engineering and Architecture (CEA), Digital Electronics (DE), and Engineering Design and Development (EDD). One SCCTI’s has been trained for each of the PLTW BMS courses, Principles of Biomedical Sciences (PBS), Human Body Systems (HBS), Medical Intervention (MI), and Biomedical Innovation (BI). At least 1 USC Affiliate Professor supports each PLTW Core Training course offering. During 2012, 205 PLTW teachers were trained in our College, approximately 60% were South Carolina teachers. During the summer of 2011, 134 teachers were trained in one of 10 PLTW Engineering courses.
The University partners with the South Carolina Department of Education, Office of Career and Technology Education to provide the annual PLTW Engineering and Biomedical Sciences Counselor Conferences, annual PLTW Fall and Spring On-going Teacher Training, and PLTW Design Competitions.
The University partners with the South Carolina Department of Education, Office of Career and Technology Education to plan, schedule, perform, and complete annual PLTW High School Certifications and Re-Certifications. The number of certified programs in South Carolina has grown from twelve in 2005 to over 80 fully certified programs in 2012. The PLTW State Leader and Affiliate Director serve on numerous PLTW Partnership Teams throughout the state. Additionally, collaboration with New Carolina, and the South Carolina Engineering Cluster has been established to support PLTW initiatives statewide. Three South Carolina PLTW schools have been recognized as PLTW National Model Schools, Wando High School (2008), Anderson 1 & 2 Career and Technology Center (2010), Tamassee-Salem and Wando High Schools (2011).
Initiatives have been established to insure college access and success by providing pathways for a seamless transition to post-secondary education. The USC College of Engineering and Computing has signed Memorandums of Agreements (MOA) with South Carolina Technical Colleges serving as PLTW Post-Secondary Schools for students to articulate from their Engineering Technology programs to Engineering programs at USC. Additionally, USC offers PLTW undergraduate transcripted college credit for the two PLTW foundation engineering courses and Digital Electonics. During the past 5 years 326 high school students have received transcripted undergraduate college credit from USC for PLTW courses completed at their high school.
The USC College of Engineering and Computing in partnership with the College of Education have established degree programs to prepare teachers to teach PLTW courses. The USC CEC provides undergraduate education majors the opportunity to take engineering classes as a pathway to receive teaching certification in South Carolina for PLTW courses. The Master of Education in Teaching: Emphasis Engineering provides the curriculum and pathway for in-service teachers to teach PLTW courses.