Akron, Ohio, March 15, 2013 — When President Barack Obama cited the nation's 70,000 structurally deficient bridges in his State of the Union address last month, the University of Akron (UA) already had one solution to the problem: corrosion engineers. Now, a new partnership between UA and the Department of Defense will inspire the next generation of rust-busting corrosion engineers through an interactive educational exhibit that debuts at the Orlando Science Center in Florida, opening March 16.
As they stand under a 200-square-foot, rusty steel trestle bridge, visitors to the display move through a series of virtual experiences that depict how corrosion occurs and the scientific "fix" now under development at the University of Akron, which offers the nation's first bachelor's degree program in corrosion engineering. Supported by the U.S. DoD Corrosion Policy and Oversight Office and Bruno White Entertainment, the display (Corrosion: The Silent Menace) features videos of UA corrosion engineering students discussing their career futures.
Among the exhibit's engaging components is a video game experience, which uses kinesthetic gaming "Corr Sim Jr." to give children the opportunity to become corrosion-prevention technicians and keep their bicycles free of rust.
Launched in 2010, UA's corrosion engineering program emphasizes project management and responds to governments' and industries' calls for corrosion engineers to address what has become a $400 billion national corrosion problem.
"There is both regulatory push and industry pull for corrosion engineers," says Dr. Ed Evans, UA corrosion engineering faculty member and associate professor of chemical engineering, who points out that the high price of corrosion to industry and government prompted both entities to advocate mandates for formally educated and trained corrosion engineers.
More on UA's corrosion engineering program is available http://www.uakron.edu/corrosion/.
University of Akron
The University of Akron offers more than 300 associate, bachelor's, master's, doctorate and law degree programs – with accreditations by 35 professional agencies. With nearly 30,000 students and $46.7 million in sponsored research awards, UA is among the nation's strongest public universities focused on innovation, entrepreneurship, and investment in community and economic growth. Programs are targeted to diverse groups of learners, including full-time, part-time and on-line students, veterans, and adults returning to the classroom. The distinctive Akron Experience enhances post-graduate success through internships and co-ops, academic research (both undergraduate and graduate), study abroad, on-campus student employment, and service projects.
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