On Saturday, Feb. 29, the College of Engineering and Engineering Technology (CEET) held its first Engineering Open House in 2020, which was attended by 135 prospective high school and transfer students with 241 parents and guests for a total of 376 visitors. They were welcomed by Dean Donald Peterson in the auditorium, who gave an overview of the college, then they heard presentations by the department chairs and alumni to learn more about each major. Student ambassadors gave tours of the Engineering Building and the Engineering Technology labs at Still Hall. Faculty were present to provide their perspectives on the prospects for careers in engineering and degree programs offered by CEET.
Feedback collected in exit surveys from guests was very positive. Overall, 91% rated the event excellent or very good and 97% said either they themselves or their student would likely apply to NIU’s CEET. Of guests who attended tours at the Engineering Technology Department, 100% said overwhelmingly that they found the department visit to be “exciting,” and 81% are now considering enrolling in Engineering Technology more seriously after the visit. In fact, 78% said there is more than a 50% chance that they will enroll (or recommend someone to enroll) in Engineering Technology.
In addition to coming from across the Chicagoland area, prospective students came as far as Oregon, Wisconsin; Milwaukee, Wisconsin; Detroit, Michigan and Peoria, Illinois. Three groups of Illinois high school students came with their teachers from Proviso West High School in Hillside, Harvest Christian Academy High School in Oswego and Rock Valley Community College in Rockford. Two high school science teachers attended from Oswego East High School to see what CEET can offer students, as did the engineering department chair from the College of DuPage.