Graduates of traditional engineering programs are called on to fill a myriad of interdisciplinary design careers that are increasingly different than historical engineering jobs. These careers focus on complex problems and the importance of solving them quickly in order to be successful corporately and nationally, and demand the use of teams of interdisciplinary, people-and-process-intuitive professionals with special technical skills in engineering systems and engineering design. The students who will be needed to fill these jobs are different as well. They have grown up with computers, have seen that emerging technologies occur at the interface or outside the boundaries of traditional disciplines and are diverse in many ways beyond gender and ethnicity. National trends show smaller percentages of high school graduates are now choosing careers in engineering. In this paper we report on a fresh and innovative type of engineering department that will offer programs carefully designed to augment traditional departments and programs while providing the underpinning engineering design and systems skills to attract and create the engineers needed today. This new engineering department, called Interdisciplinary Design Engineering, will produce graduates who are experts in the process of designing engineering systems.

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