The 21st century is witnessing a rapid increase in the pace of knowledge creation in the sciences and engineering. Competing in this global economy requires a science and engineering workforce that is consistently at the technological forefront. Dr. Charles Vest, President of the National Academy of Engineering, in a speech at the University of Michigan on October 15, 2007, put it simply: prospering in the knowledge age requires people with knowledge.
The purpose of the Lifelong Learning Imperative Workshop, summarized in this volume, was to consider learning opportunities for the engineering professional. The participants in the workshop addressed the necessity of lifelong learning, the history of continuing education, possible delivery systems, systems used by other professions, and the current state of learning when viewed in the light of the rapid rate of technological change.