Outreach Activity Including Public Service
Georgia Intern Fellowships for Teachers (GIFT) Program
Advisor for two undergraduate students, James Hite (Earth and Atmospheric Science) and Talia Knapp (Computer Science), from the Pre-Teaching: Summer Undergraduate Research Experience (P-T SURE) program in summers 2011 and 2012, CEISMC (Center for Education Integrating Science, Mathematics and Computing), Georgia Institute of Technology.
Advisor for three high school teachers through the Georgia Intern-Fellowships for Teachers (GIFT) in summers 2010, 2011, and 2012: Dr. Ashuri hosted these teachers in his ESBE Lab for a 4-week summer research boot camp in building energy efficiency. The GIFT program was founded in 1991 as a program of the Georgia Institute of Technology’s CEISMC (Center for Education Integrating Science, Mathematics and Computing).
Advisor for 12 high school students and their teachers hosted in The ESBE Lab for a 4-week summer research boot camp in building energy efficiency in summers 2010, 2011, and 2012: Professor Ashuri established this program in collaboration with the Georgia Tech Center for Education Integrating Science, Mathematics and Computing (CEISMC) and financial support through the Georgia Intern Fellowships for Teachers (GIFT) Program and Georgia Power (local electricity utility company). Students came from South Cobb and Rockdale County High Schools – both are classified as “High Needs” Title I. Students conducted research to better understand: (1) why should homeowners demand energy efficiency interventions with both new and existing homes?; (2) what are current mechanisms (e.g., government incentives, taxation policies, building codes and standards, etc.) to enforce or peruse construction companies to make design/blueprint decisions based on energy efficiency?; and (3) how can one make a business case for investments in energy efficiency interventions?
The ACE Mentor Program of Atlanta
The ESBE Lab has been working as an active mentor with the ACE Mentor Program of Atlanta. The ACE Mentor Program of America http://www.acementor.org/introduces high school students to possible careers in Architecture, Construction and Engineering. Students come from predominantly minority and underserved high schools and neighborhoods and have not been exposed to these industries. We created an outreach and engagement module for the ACE Program. This was a one-day event consists of interactive lectures, discussions, and a team-based fun exercise central to the core research topics of energy-efficient buildings and sustainable development. The significance of energy conservation in buildings, as well as appropriate strategies to make energy-efficient and green buildings, was presented to students through several familiar cases in Metro Atlanta. The applicability of incorporating flexibility in building design and its impact on life cycle energy-efficiency were introduced to students through a fun class exercise. This educational module is intended to raise the awareness of students about the importance of buildings in energy conservation and sustainable development and promote innovative, critical thinking in identifying flexible design alternatives for buildings operating in uncertain environment. It encourages a diverse group of students across all cultural, racial, and socio-economic backgrounds to pursue career in engineering fields related to sustainable building design and construction.
The Georgia Tech Undergraduate Research Opportunities Program (UROP)
The ESBE Lab has been working closely with the Georgia Tech Undergraduate Research Opportunities Program (UROP) (http://www.undergradresearch.gatech.edu) to engage undergraduate students in research activities. Through this well-established program, Professor Ashuri has the opportunity to recruit and work with several undergraduate students in civil engineering, building construction, industrial, and mechanical engineering. Three ESBE Lab Undergraduate Students Rustann Solomero, Seungho Shin, and Jingwei Zhou are the recipients of the prestigious President's Undergraduate Research Award. Undergraduate student Seungho Shin also won Outstanding Poster Presentation Award, representing his research on “Regression Analysis Model for Predicting Construction Cost Index,” in Georgia Tech's Undergraduate Research Spring 2010 Symposium. SeungHo’s work is one of the more than 120 different research projects that Georgia Tech students presented at the Undergraduate Research Spring Symposium on March 16, 2010 in the Student Center Ballroom. The ESBE continues to work with many of the UROP’s outstanding minority students and plans to reaffirm their support in this project. These students will work under the supervision of Dr Ashuri and the mentorship of the PhD students in various activities such as data collection and model building.
Construction Education Foundation of Georgia (CEFGA)
Dr. Ashuri presented his research to k-12 program students in the 2009 CEFGA Expo and SkillsUSA at Georgia International Convention Center (GICC) on April 16-17. CEFGA is a nonprofit organization dedicated to promoting careers in construction and addressing the industry’s skilled worker shortage. CEFGA's mission is to attract, train and motivate the next generation of construction professionals – designers, builders and managers.
2012 Siemens Competition – High School Workshop
Dr. Ashuri and his Ph.D. student, Mr. Mohsen Shahandashti, participated in the 2012 Siemens Competition – High School Workshop at Georgia Tech on November 16, 2012. They presented their research “Evaluation of Investments in Photovoltaic Systems” to high school students and their teachers.