Engineering course fills gap

March 12, 2013 — by Dylan Jew

As part of Silicon Valley and all of the high tech companies, Saratoga High has a valid argument for an engineering course.

As part of Silicon Valley and all of the high tech companies, Saratoga High has a valid argument for an engineering course. Next year’s addition of the Introduction to Engineering class, open to sophomores and juniors, will be a welcome addition to the current math and science courses.

An introduction course is especially beneficial, since many high school students do not have a firm grasp on what engineering is exactly. While calculus and physics offer most of the skills engineers would need, it can be a tough transition into college for engineering majors if they have not taken a single class specifically geared toward the design aspect of engineering.

Depending on the enrollment in the intro class, more advanced classes can be offered to those who wish to pursue the field further. Many other majors have multiple courses that students can take to gear their high school curriculum toward what they will be learning in college and ultimately utilizing in their profession, such as pre-med majors taking AP Bio. By including an engineering track in the curriculum, school officials are exposing students to one of the valley’s most important careers.

With the termination of other classes, especially the languages, such as Japanese, it could be said there is too much emphasis put on math, science and technology — the STEM fields. Engineering, however, has received little attention as a class, and the school must shape its class offerings to the desires of the students. If many students are interested in an engineering class, it is in the school’s interest to provide one.

The addition will also help ease the jump to AP Comp Sci; the engineering track could offer a gentle paced computer science introduction for those interested in programming.

The engineering class will also be hands on, and project based. This benefits students with this kind of learning style, and will give them an opportunity to learn certain math or science skills using a different approach.

With so many parents coming from an engineering background, a class dedicated to that profession should be a no-brainer.