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PREPUBLICATION COPYâUncorrected Proofs 37 4 Naval Engineering Workforce This chapter discusses the second of three pillars supported by the National Naval Responsibility for Naval Engineering (NNR-NE): the naval engineering workforce. To do so, the chapter begins with an overview of trends in science, technology, engineering, and mathematics (STEM) educational attainment in the United States during the past two decades since the NNRs were established. As explained in Chapter 3, naval engineering is multidisciplinary, and therefore it shares the same workforce pipeline as many other technical and engineering fields. Consideration is therefore given to trends in the overall demand for STEM graduates, particularly from disciplines of high relevance to NE. The chapter then summarizes initiatives by the NNR-NE, the Office of Naval Research (ONR), and the U.S. Department of Defense (DOD) to encourage more students to pursue STEM educations and careers critical to the Navyâs NE needs. The chapter concludes by considering how NNR-NE can use the âlead, leverage, and monitorâ framework for prioritizing its pipeline- and workforce-related activities. It merits noting that a recent study by the BankRate.Com ranked naval architecture and marine engineering as the most valuable college majors when taking into account factors such as median salary and unemployment rate. These students are finding work in maritime fields such as offshore energy production and commercial shipbuilding and in non-maritime fields where their systems engineering knowledge is valuable. While the growing value of an NE degree can be viewed as a positive development for the NE enterprise if it leads to more students entering NE programs, it may also make it more difficult for the Navy to attract workers due to compensation and security clearance demands.24 TRENDS IN STEM EDUCATION IN THE UNITED STATES According to statistics from the National Science Foundation,25 STEM education has been on the rise in the United States over the past two decades. For instance, the number of engineering bachelorâs degrees increased by 63 percent and the number of engineering masterâs and doctorate degrees increased by more than 90 percent from 2000 to 2015 (see Figure 4-1). 24 https://www.bankrate.com/career/most-valuable-college-majors/ 25 National Science Foundation. 2018. https://www.nsf.gov/statistics/2018/nsb20181.
PREPUBLICATION COPYâUncorrected Proofs 38 FIGURE 4-1 Number of engineering undergraduate and graduate degrees awarded in the United States. SOURCE: National Science Foundation (https://www.nsf.gov/statistics). These gains, however, need to be placed in context with a growing number of degrees awarded in other fields that compete for students, including some that have less relevance to the NE workforce pipeline. NSF data, for example, show that the social sciences regularly account for the largest number of bachelorâs degrees awarded, and their number increased by 50 percent between 2000 and 2015 (see Figure 4-2). The popularity of engineering is nevertheless high at the graduate school level, where it accounted for more masterâs degrees than any other field in 2015 (see Figure 4-3). As the economy has become more technology driven, competition for STEM talent has increased, which has presumably been a factor spurring growth in the study of engineering and other technical disciplines but also a potential challenge for channeling sufficient graduates to the NE enterprise, especially in disciplines of high relevance to NE such as mechanical engineering, naval architecture, systems engineering, modeling and simulation, and data analytics. Because the broad domain of NE also includes professionals filling positions across many different science and engineering disciplines, it is difficult to characterize the total future labor demand in NE. It is notable, however, that the Bureau of Labor Statistics26 forecasts the number of U.S. positions in âMarine Engineers and Naval Architects,â which stood at 8,200 in 2016, will grow by 12 percent over the next decade, or âfaster than averageâ and among the highest of all disciplines examined for the category of âArchitecture and Engineering.â To fill 26 U.S. Department of Labor. Occupational Outlook Handbook, Marine Engineers and Naval Architects. https://www.bls.gov/ooh/architecture-and-engineering/marine-engineers-and-naval-architects.htm. 0 20,000 40,000 60,000 80,000 100,000 120,000 Engineering Engineering Engineering Bachelors Masters Doctorates 2000 2015
PREPUBLICATION COPYâUncorrected Proofs 39 these positions, the NE enterprise will need to compete with other sectors for highly qualified STEM graduates. FIGURE 4-2 Trends in annual number (thousands) of bachelorâs degrees awarded in the United States in STEM and adjacent fields, 2000 to 2015. SOURCE: National Science Foundation (https://www.nsf.gov/statistics). Faced with high demand for needed engineering and technical expertise, an option for the NE enterprise is to recruit recent graduates from STEM fields and dedicate a period of time to training them in relevant NE subject matter. The recruitment and retention of NE professionals, however, can be further challenged by the long time required to process security clearances for new hires, which the U.S. Government Accountability Office has identified as a âhigh-riskâ problem for federal government programs.27 As discussed in the 2012 National Research Council report Assuring the U.S. Department of Defense a Strong Science, Technology, Engineering, and Mathematics (STEM) Workforce.28 DOD and its associated contractors have special and legitimate needs to hire STEM personnel who can obtain security clearances. Under current practices this generally requires U.S. citizenship, and special problems therefore can arise in hiring in STEM fields in which large proportions of students at U.S. universities are foreign nationals. In the context of the pool of STEM workers available to DOD, the need to obtain a security clearance is a two-fold source of constraint on supply. First, the time required to obtain a security clearance for citizens represents an impediment to success in DODâs hiring process. Second, this requirement reduces the pool of the potential STEM workforce for DOD in fields in which non-citizens represent substantial fractions. 27 https://www.gao.gov/highrisk/govwide_security_clearance_process/why_did_study 28 National Academy of Engineering and National Research Council. 2012. Assuring the U.S. Department of Defense a Strong Science, Technology, Engineering, and Mathematics (STEM) Workforce. Washington, DC: The National Academies Press. pp. 89-90. 0 50 100 150 200 2000 2002 2004 2006 2008 2010 2012 2014 Social sciences Biological and agricultural sciences Psychology Engineering Computer sciences Physical sciences Mathematics and statistics
PREPUBLICATION COPYâUncorrected Proofs 40 FIGURE 4-3 Trends in annual number (thousands) of masterâs degrees awarded in the United States in STEM and adjacent fields, 2000 to 2015. SOURCE: National Science Foundation (https://www.nsf.gov/statistics). The difficulty of recruiting in an environment that demands security clearances is a DOD-wide problem; however, ONR may be able to ease the problem, at least marginally, for recruiting to the NE enterprise. One possible option, for instance, is for the NNR-NE to provide short-term unclassified funding of work for new naval engineering hires that enables them to begin integrating into the workforce sooner as they await security clearances. Such an option would be consistent with the advice in the 2012 National Research Council report, which recommended that DOD be given additional authority to expedite the security clearances needed for such positions, including authority for temporary hiring for nonsensitive assignments pending security clearance.29 The committee is aware, for instance, of an agreement reached in 2018 between the College of Engineering of the University of HawaiÊ»i at MÄnoa and the Pearl Harbor Naval Shipyard that allowed senior year students to perform projects at the shipyard for credit in mechanical engineering. By earning academic credit for an unclassified capstone project in a working shipyard, the students were eligible for security clearance processing and therefore given a head start in completing this critical hiring step. RELEVANT NE WORKFORCE DEVELOPMENT PROGRAMS ONRâs Advanced Naval Platforms Division, which administers the NNR-NE, envisages NE workforce capacity development along a continuum from grade school to college and university programs to professional development (see Figure 4-4). Efforts to increase the workforce supply 29 National Academy of Engineering and National Research Council. 2012. Assuring the U.S. Department of Defense a Strong Science, Technology, Engineering, and Mathematics (STEM) Workforce. Washington, DC: The National Academies Press. p. 8. 0 10 20 30 40 50 60 2000 2001 2002 2003 2004 2005 2006 2007 2008 2009 2010 2011 2012 2013 2014 2015 Engineering Social sciences Psychology Computer sciences Biological and agricultural sciences Physical sciences Mathematics and statistics
PREPUBLICATION COPYâUncorrected Proofs 41 pipeline are designed to be holistic and progressive, starting with inspiring STEM interest in Kâ 12, encouraging training and education in community and 4-year colleges, supporting graduate studies and university research, and providing professional development opportunities. This outlook is consistent with the 2018 guide to Naval STEM,30 which explains how the development and sustainment of the talent base for the Navyâs engineering and science needs requires concerted efforts aimed at: ï· Inspiration and engagementâattracting both future and present scientists and engineers to naval-relevant career paths via engagement of Kâ12 students as well as undergraduate and graduate students and professionals working in relevant disciplines. ï· Educationâincluding the full spectrum of learners, from undergraduate and graduate students to mid-career professionals. Hands-on, experiential learning opportunities are especially effective in both educating and inspiring prospective naval engineering professionals. ï· Recruitmentâbuilding on early engagement of undergraduate and graduate students â and facultyâin the naval engineering enterprise, providing exciting, meaningful career opportunities to the best of the best. ï· Retentionâensuring that these professionals are challenged, and that they are rewarded for high performance, including via career advancement through additional training and experience. FIGURE 4-4 ONRâs approach to building naval engineering workforce capacity. SOURCE: Thomas Fu, ONR, National Naval ResponsibilityâNaval Engineering. Presentation to study committee, April 30, 2018. 30 See http://navalstem.navylive.dodlive.mil.
PREPUBLICATION COPYâUncorrected Proofs 42 The Navyâs success in building the NE workforce pipeline can therefore be measured on the basis of a number of outcomes. Perhaps the most direct one is the population of graduate students and post-doctoral researchers supported by ONR programs. Changes in this population over time may be indicative of changing levels of ONR support for graduate work, but it may also be reflective of longer-term trends in the number of individuals entering relevant STEM fields to create a larger body of interested and capable candidates for program support. The 2011 Transportation Research Board (TRB) review of the NNR-NE estimated that for the 4 years from 2006 to 2009, the program supported 1,235 graduate students and 330 post- doctoral fellows, or about 310 and 80 per year, respectively (see Table 4-1). When queried about recent support for these students and researchers, ONR program staff estimated the number of graduate students had grown to an average of about 640 per year and the number of post-doctoral fellows to about 160 per year (see Table 4-2). TABLE 4-2 Graduate Students and Post-doctoral Fellows Supported by NNR-NE, 2006â2009 Fiscal Year Graduate Students Post-doctoral Fellows 2006 275 50 2007 460 100 2008 245 80 2009 255 100 SOURCE: TRB Special Report 306: Naval Engineering in the 21st Century: The Science and Technology Foundation for Future Naval Fleets. Transportation Research Board, Washington, D.C., 2011. p. 145. TABLE 4-2 Graduate Students and Post-doctoral Fellows supported by NNR-NE, 2017 and 2018 Fiscal Year Graduate Students Post-doctoral Fellows 2017 650 129 2018 637 183 SOURCE: J. Smith, ONR, personal communication, September 2018. These most recent numbers indicate that the NNR-NE program has been increasingly successful in supporting the training and education of students pursuing advanced degrees in disciplines related to naval engineering. One might infer that the NNR-NE efforts to interest Kâ 12 students in STEM and to inspire undergraduate NE students have contributed to the growth in NE graduate students by creating a larger base of younger students interested in and able to pursue those graduate-level opportunities. The NNR-NE program has a record of contributing to STEM pipeline programs and naval engineering experiential learning opportunities, and these efforts may be paying off in ways that are now becoming evident in the graduate and post-doc populations. Unfortunately, metrics that address outputs across all NNR-NE pipeline investments are not available for assessing the validity of inferences about the long-term workforce value of investments in Kâ12 STEM and experiential learning. For this purpose, ONR might need âlongitudinalâ metrics that track individuals as they move into and through the NE workforce pipeline. The idea would be to track how many funded students transition to naval engineering positions in the government and industry and how long they remain in those positions. While
PREPUBLICATION COPYâUncorrected Proofs 43 difficult to develop, such metrics could inform important choices about the appropriate mix of workforce investments across the continuum, from STEM Kâ12 to graduate research and professional development. Although their benefit cannot be assessed directly, investments aimed at inspiring and attracting people to the NE educational pipeline are being made by NNR-NE as well as the Navy and DOD. In reviewing the data gathered on graduate and postdoctoral NE students from the 2011 TRB review (2006 to 2009, cited in Table 4-1) and this review (2017 to 2018, cited in Table 4- 2), the committee also observes that the shares of the total student population from underrepresented groups, including women, African American, and Hispanic, have remained largely unchanged over the period, with women accounting for between 15 and 20 percent and underrepresented racial and ethnic groups accounting between 5 and 10 percent. It merits noting that according to a recent NASEM report on STEM graduate education the number of masterâs and doctoral degrees in STEM fields grew considerably for both men and women from 2000 to 2015, but the growth rates for women were higher.31 Women earned 96 percent more masterâs degrees and 74 percent more doctoral degrees in 2015 than in 2000, while men earned 82 percent and 43 percent more, respectively. Hence, there would appear to be increasing opportunity for attracting more women to NE, especially since (according to the NASEM report) women earned 322,900 STEM degrees in 2015, nearly on parity with men (who earned 327,100 degrees). While growth rates in STEM undergraduate and graduate degrees earned by underrepresented minorities have been lower than the rates of growth achieved by women, the NASEM report points out that demographic trends are expected to increase the formerâs share of potential graduate students as wellâand thus potentially offer more opportunity to expand the NE talent pool. ONR/NNR-NE Programs The SeaPerch Kâ12 outreach and education camp was one of the first STEM programs funded by the NNR-NE. Based on a book of that name, the first curriculum using this concept was created at the Massachusetts Institute of Technology to inspire young students into the ocean sciences and naval engineering pipelines. Students learn about robotics, engineering, science, and mathematics while building an underwater remotely operated vehicle. With the assistance of ONR and the Society of Naval Architects and Marine Engineers, the SeaPerch program has expanded to reach young people across the country and abroad. The RobotX competition is another STEM effort funded under the NNR-NE program that has had considerable success in attracting young people to NE disciplines, in this case by focusing on undergraduate and graduate students. First held in 2014 in Singapore and later in Hawaii in 2016 and 2018, the competition employs a standardized surface vessel platform that students transform into an autonomous system capable of performing a series of tasks on the water on its own. Students are responsible for all aspects of the system, including sensors, controls, software, power, communications, and the propulsion system. The NNR-NE program has also played a major role in the establishment of several internship programs to provide the experiential learning opportunities that connect both students and teachers to the NE enterprise. They include the Naval Research Enterprise Intern Program (NREIP), a 10-week program that offers summer appointments at Navy laboratories to 31 National Academies of Sciences, Engineering, and Medicine. 2018. Graduate STEM Education for the 21st Century. Washington, DC: The National Academies Press, pp. 33-55. https://doi.org/10.17226/25038.
PREPUBLICATION COPYâUncorrected Proofs 44 sophomores, juniors, seniors, and graduate students from participating universities. The program is administered by the American Society for Engineering Education (ASEE). In 2017, 41 undergraduates participated at Navy labs and about 20 at the Naval Postgraduate School. The ASEE also administers the Navy/ASEE Summer Faculty Research and Sabbatical Leave Program that enables university faculty members to work for ten weeks (or longer for those eligible for sabbatical leave) in Navy laboratories on research of mutual interest. In addition to attracting and retaining members of the NE pipeline, programs such as these can potentially play a role in minimizing the adverse impacts on future NE workers from delays associated with obtaining security clearances. Two examples of similar programs from outside the ONR portfolio that are intended to inspire and help recruit the future analytical and engineering workforce are described in Box 4-1. They suggest a potential to leverage ongoing collaborative efforts that engage students, scientists, startups, and practitioners (including sailors) to band together to tackle difficult and important challenges such as those that span the Navyâs digital, technical, and engineering landscape.
PREPUBLICATION COPYâUncorrected Proofs 45 Over the years, the NNR-NE program has leveraged these various internship, scholarship, and fellowship programs to increase the number of young people and early career professionals engaged in the Navyâs NE enterprise. The Center for Innovation in Ship Design (CISD) was created around the same time as the NNR-NE program. The CISD is a partnership between ONR, Naval Sea Systems Command, and the shipbuilding industry. This collaborative learning environment was created to take a total ship design approach to complex design problems. The problems are addressed through âInnovation Cellsâ that employ teams from government, academia, and industry in high intensity, 3- to 6-month projects to create a ship design concept; for instance, a small, fast ship. The NNR-NE program was responsible for the creation of the Centers for Innovation in Naval Technologies (CINTs). The centers facilitate short-term innovation cell activities in BOX 4-1 Examples of Activities from Outside ONR to Inspire and Recruit the S&T Workforce Example activities from other domains that engage students, scientists, startups, and practitioners show how the Office of Naval Research (ONR) could potentially leverage its ongoing collaborative efforts to inspire and recruit its future naval engineering (NE) workforce. Two examples are the Massachusetts Institute of Technology Lincoln Laboratory (MIT/LL) Beaver Works Center in Cambridge, Massachusetts, and the Naval Postgraduate Schoolâs HACKtheMACHINE series, a typical 3-day challenge event recently held in partnership with MIT in Boston in September 2018. Through Beaver Works, undergraduate students are given real-world challenge problems of interest to Department of Defense (DOD) sponsors. Students are divided into project teams that design, develop, and test prototypes of their solutions. They gain experience in presenting their ideas to professors, teaching assistants, and MIT/LL engineering staff who can guide them in transforming their capstone projects into viable solutions for future operational use. This program has successfully generated solutions in unmanned systems, undersea vehicle AlH2O power, and ocean sensing applications. The current Mechanical Engineering course challenges the students to design a deployable network of latent semisubmersible pods that must operate autonomously in a marine environment, providing power and communications links to significantly extend the duration of maritime surveillance operations. These Mechanical Engineering students often enter into the course with little or no knowledge of Navy needs. Through exposure to the challenges of operating in the maritime domain, many students have been inspired to pursue graduate education in ocean engineering or start their own business based on the technology and in doing so have become part of the NE workforce of the future. Likewise, HACKtheMACHINE inspires the science, technology, engineering, and math workforce to apply engineering knowledge to Navy challenges. An upcoming event is the worldâs âonly competitive hacking event to take place using a custom suite of maritime electronics sensors to support a scored hacking challenge.â The program immerses computer scientists and engineers in a digital Navy experience such as a Maritime Capture the Flag, where competitors will radio frequency hacking spoof navigation systems like AID, global positioning systems, and bridge-to-bridge radio. Another track challenges data scientists to leverage artificial intelligence and big-data analytics from the thousands of machines that drive Navy platforms. Their competition involves designing algorithms to build collision prevention systems using maritime data from satellite tracking and electronic nautical charts. A third track, âhack for the oceans,â challenges competitors to build the ultimate app that runs on Navy infrastructure and helps the Navy coordinate with local and regional providers during humanitarian and ecological crises.
PREPUBLICATION COPYâUncorrected Proofs 46 collaboration with Naval Information Warfare Systems Command (NAVWARSYSCOM) San Diego, Naval Surface Warfare Center (NSWC) Carderock, NSWC Panama City, NSWC Philadelphia, and NSWC Dahlgren. Annually, each CINT selects a topic, and creates teams of NREIP students, summer faculty, and government employees to examine the problem and develop solutions. DOD Programs DOD also supports programs that support the NE enterprise workforce. For example, the Science and Engineering Apprentice Program provides opportunities for high school students to work as junior research assistants in DOD laboratories. In 2017, 265 students participated in the program, including 24 at Navy labs and about 40 at the Naval Postgraduate School. Further along in the pipeline, the National Defense Science and Engineering Graduate (NDSEG) Fellowship Program awards fellowships to U.S. citizen graduate students pursuing advanced degrees in STEM areas of interest to DOD, including the U.S. Navy. Another example is DODâs Science, Mathematics and Research for Transformation (SMART) Scholarship-for-Service Program, which provides full tuition and stipend support to undergraduate and graduate students pursuing a degree in a STEM discipline. SMART program scholars, who have to be citizens of the United States, Australia, Canada, New Zealand, or the United Kingdom, are required to work for a minimum number of years in a DOD lab or office. However, this requirement is often viewed as an opportunity to obtain a challenging and competitive position doing work in an area related to the scholarâs field of study. Another key advantage of SMART scholarships is that they require an early commitment from students, allowing the security clearance process to start sooner. Summaries of recent NDSEG fellowship and SMART awards are shown in Tables 4-3 and 4-4. The low number of fellowships and awards in Naval Architecture and Ocean Engineering is worrisome. While NNR-NE is leveraging these two DOD programs, it cannot know how many students from other disciplines end up pursuing careers in the multidisciplinary field of NE either in government or in the private sector. Indeed, the collection of data on how many students from other disciplines ultimately pursue NE careersâincluding the subset that have obtained security clearancesâcould shed light on this potential source of NE workers. NNR-NE efforts aimed at increasing the applicant pools for these programs may be warranted to ensure that each programâs participation adequately reflects the importance of NE to the Navy and DOD.
PREPUBLICATION COPYâUncorrected Proofs 47 TABLE 4-3 Awards from 2014â2017 National Defense Science and Engineering Graduate (NDSEG) Fellowship Program by Field of Study Field 2014 2015 2016 2017 Aeronautical and Astronautical Engineering 15 21 19 28 Biosciences 21 18 15 21 Chemical Engineering 11 5 6 9 Chemistry 13 19 14 11 Civil Engineering 3 4 2 3 Cognitive, Neural, and Behavioral Sciences 6 14 13 9 Computer and Computational Sciences 13 23 13 15 Electrical Engineering 14 14 17 17 Geosciences 10 8 6 5 Materials Science and Engineering 22 15 26 22 Mathematics 11 9 9 11 Mechanical Engineering 14 13 12 17 Naval Architecture and Ocean Engineering 2 2 4 2 Oceanography 12 2 3 5 Physics 22 13 21 20 Total 189 180 180 195 Awards by Sponsoring Agency Army Research Office 64 61 60 65 Air Force Office of Scientific Research 67 59 0 0 Air Force Research Laboratory 0 0 60 65 Office of Naval Research 58 60 60 65 Total 189 180 180 195 SOURCE: https://www.ndsegfellowships.org.
PREPUBLICATION COPYâUncorrected Proofs 48 TABLE 4-4 Summary of SMART Awards and Educational Attainment 2018 2017 2016 Number of Scholars Awarded 382 343 239 Proposed Degree Percentage Percentage Percentage Bachelorâs 57% 58% 58% Joint Bachelorâs- Masterâs 7% 8% 8% Masterâs 18% 15% 15% Ph.D. 19% 19% 19% Awarded by Discipline Percentage Percentage Percentage Aeronautical and Astronautical Engineering 7% 8% 8% Biosciences 1% 3% 3% Chemical Engineering 1% 3% 3% Chemistry 1% 1% 1% Civil Engineering 5% 7% 7% Cognitive, Neural, and Behavioral Sciences 1% 1% 1% Computer and Computational Sciences and Computer Engineering 26% 22% 22% Electrical Engineering 22% 18% 18% Geosciences 2% 2% 2% Industrial and Systems Engineering 2% 3% 3% Information Sciences 2% 2% 2% Materials Science and Engineering 3% 1% 1% Mathematics 5% 3% 3% Mechanical Engineering 16% 20% 20% Naval Architecture and Ocean Engineering 1% 2% 2% Nuclear Engineering 1% 1% 1% Oceanography 0% 0% 0% Operations Research 1% 1% 1% Physics 3% 4% 4% NOTE: Numbers may not add to 100 percent due to rounding. SOURCE: https://smartscholarshipprod.service- now.com/smart?id=kb_category&kb_category=6242a353dbbd0300b67330ca7c9619b9.
PREPUBLICATION COPYâUncorrected Proofs 49 In addition to programs aimed at students, DOD has many workforce development and executive education programs targeted at the existing STEM workforce that are applicable to the NE enterprise. While most of these programs are concentrated on uniformed service members, there is vast potential for expansion of the programs to the civilian DOD workforce. The programs run the gamut from short courses taken in the workplace or online to advanced, graduate level in-residence courses. Some DOD institutions offer certificate and degree credit courses in a broad array of resident, non-resident, and hybrid programs. The Defense Acquisition University, for example, provides training at three levels of certification. These DOD programs are obviously important for developing, maintaining, and enhancing the relevance of the skills of defense industry workers. There are also DOD institutions that can be exploited to convert non-STEM employees into STEM workers. For example, the Naval Postgraduate School (NPS) has a program to re- qualify mid-career naval officers with non-STEM degrees into masterâs degree graduates of science and engineering programs. It does so in both resident and non-resident offerings. DOD civilians are eligible for these NPS programs and many are enrolled now, especially in the systems engineering domain, but further use could be made in the future of this conversion option, short-circuiting as it does the 8- to 10-year lag time between eighth grade and the workplace, and virtually eliminating attrition and clearance issues. âLEAD, LEVERAGE, AND MONITORâ WORKFORCE INVESTMENTS In Chapter 3 it was recommended that ONR use the âlead, leverage, and monitorâ construct to guide its science and technology (S&T) portfolio investments. This construct, in the committeeâs view, is equally suited to guiding NNR-NEâs strategic choices about education and workforce investments, as shown in Table 4-5. Its use in this way would also be consistent with the advice in the 2011 TRB review, which pointed to the importance of NNR-NE having an explicit, well- guided role with regard to the NE workforce. Indeed, the earlier report concluded that âONR research investments should be directed according to the value to the Navy of the scientific knowledge they produce, but the connection between research support and professional workforce supply cannot be overlooked.â The report went on to conclude, however, that âthe practical significance of managing STEM as an essential element of the NNRs is not evident.â This study committee agrees with the importance placed by the earlier study committee on NNR- NEâs STEM and workforce roles, but does not find evidence that much has changed in the program since the 2011 report was issued. What the committee finds missing from the NNR-NEâs workforce activities is an âintent- drivenâ approach to strategic direction. NNR-NE has long supported programs aimed at inspiring and developing naval engineering talent through a variety of means across the continuum of Kâ 12, undergraduate student, graduate student, faculty, and government and industry employee programs discussed above. The program, however, lacks insightful outcome metrics that can be used to monitor and improve the effectiveness of its lead workforce responsibilities and overall progress toward its NE workforce goals. As noted earlier, the program lacks longitudinal measures to determine whether its inspirational and experiential learning programs, such as at the Kâ12 levels, are having a positive influence on the number of students entering the STEM fields relevant to NE and whether those students are ultimately pursuing NE careers. As the STEM fields relevant to the NE pipeline change and expand, such metrics are becoming increasingly important to ensure the NNR-NE program aligns with and leverages the training and other
PREPUBLICATION COPYâUncorrected Proofs 50 pipeline activities of other parts of ONR, DOD, and the private sector to ensure adequate workforce depth and breadth to address the Navyâs NE needs today and in the future. Such alignment and leveraging, for instance, could be helpful for finding ways to ensure that DOD- sponsored fellowships and scholarships attract larger numbers of naval engineers. TABLE 4-5 Lead, Leverage, and Monitor Applied to NNR-NE Workforce Investments Lead Leverage Monitor ï· Inspire NE education and talent ï· Sponsor NE experiential learning and training via university grants that include UG and G students ï· Sponsor Kâ12 programs and outreach programs relevant to NE ï· Sponsor student internships at relevant Navy and DOD facilities ï· Sponsor NE faculty internships and sabbaticals at relevant government (and possibly industry) facilities ï· Navy and DOD scholarships, fellowships, and internships toward NE education ï· Industry internships ï· Government and industry faculty sabbaticals in NE relevant settings ï· U.S. and international STEM competitions reflecting NE future challenges ï· Developments in STEM outreach and training programs in the United States and overseas ï· Technology developers external to DOD, including international, with a view to keeping ONR-supported training programs up to date, as well as identifying potential experiential learning opportunities NOTE: DOD = U.S. Department of Defense; G = graduate; NE = naval engineering; ONR = Office of Naval Research; STEM = science, technology, engineering and mathematics; UG = undergraduate. Given the observations made earlier in this chapter, and with these strategic needs of the NNR-NE workforce component in mind, the committee offers the following recommendations: ï· ONR should perform periodic assessments of the effectiveness of NNR-NE workforce development programs, such as faculty summer fellowships, student internships, and centers for innovation (e.g., CISD and CINTs), in connecting faculty and students with Navy challenges and problems. The assessments should be supported by reporting metrics that track career outcomes and paths (Recommendation 4-1). ï· ONR should use NNR-NE funds to leverage the STEM education and workforce programs that already exist in the U.S. Department of the Navy and the U.S. Department of Defense, such as the National Defense Science and Engineering Graduate Fellowship and Science, Mathematics, and Research for Transformation Scholarship-for-Service Programs, as a means of increasing participation by naval engineers and naval architects in line with the importance these disciplines to the Navy and DOD (Recommendation 4-2).