New ET Faculty Spotlight!

The engineering technology network and number of colleges offering the statewide A.S. degree in engineering has greatly expanded over the years. Since the implementation of the program in 2007, the degree has been lauded as a model program by the manufacturing institute and has been a winner of several state and national awards. A core part of the program and its success hinges not only on the framework, but also rests on faculty who ensure it is relevant and aligned with local industry needs. The consortium of colleges offering the A.S.E.T degree in 14 state and community colleges across Florida boasts of a distinguished panel of qualified educators.

Joining these ranks is Aubri Hanson, Ph.D., assistant professor of engineering technology at Gulf Coast State
College (GCSC). Hanson has a B.S. and an M.S. degree in Physics with a minor in electronics engineering and mathematics from the University of Southern Mississippi. Prior to joining GCSC, Hanson worked for  Radiance Technologies doing research on radiation detection and for NASA Stennis Space Center working on rocket engine testing, vacuum systems, integrated system health management, and the return to flight efforts after the space shuttle Columbia accident. She has also worked on projects at NASA Marshall Space Flight Center and NASA Kennedy Space Center as a contractor including the Mars Simulation Chamber.

Having transitioned into academia after 12 years in industry, Hanson has a good understanding of what is required of students to be successful and help connect what they are doing in the classroom to real jobs. “The foremost way our courses prepare students for the workforce is by providing hands-on learning experiences in addition to the traditional classroom lectures and textbook learning” Hanson said. To keep content current and relevant, she maintains contacts with industry and professional organizations like the International Society for Automation (ISA) where Hanson currently serving as the Technical Program Chair for the International Instrumentation Symposium and on the Scholarship Committee. “Our industrial advisory committee keeps us in touch with the needs of local industry and we have made several changes/additions in our programs to accommodate their requests.”

At GCSC she currently teaches Data Acquisition & Control Systems; LabVIEW Instrumentation;
Control Systems Technology; Programmable Logic Controllers; Process Control & Instrumentation; Introduction to Electronics; Digital Electronics; Electronic Devices & Circuits, and several special projects courses. Every single course has a lab associated with it where students utilize hardware the same way they will see being used by industry. Hanson makes every effort to ensure curriculum design is never stagnant and students get to hear the voice of industry experts. “It is very important for me to learn from the students, as well as teach them, in an effort to improve my methods of instruction.”

Hanson firmly believes any hard-working student can be successful in the ET program as long as they have the “desire to learn and the willingness to apply themselves in and out of the classroom.” She believes there are a variety of paths to choose from in the A.S program and many certificate programs available to customize the educational experience for each student based on their strengths, needs, and interests.

For more information on the engineering program at GCSC contact Aubri Hanson at   ahanson@gulfcoast.edu, or at 850.769.1551. For information on the statewide A.S.E.T degree visit www.madeinflorida.org, or contact Dr. Marilyn Barger at barger@fl-ate.org. Stay tuned also next month for an update on yet another ET faculty member at Tallahassee Community College.