The currency of the engineering profession is knowledge. The knowledge gained by an engineer immersed in public policy is commonly undervalued because it is seen as not being applicable to the technical discipline. However, knowledge of the policymaking process is exactly what is needed to understand and communicate technical data in a way that decision-makers can leverage in developing prudent policies. So exposure to policy in effect enables engineers to apply their knowledge for public benefit — the genesis of the engineering discipline. This is only one of the many compelling reasons why interaction between engineers and policymakers should be valued by industry and academia. It was a motivating factor for two faculty members who recently made a temporary transition away from their respective universities to pursue Science and Technology fellowships in Washington, DC. Both individuals had tremendous experiences, professionally and personally, and encourage other engineers to make a similar adventure in Washington, DC one of their career goals.

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