IUCEE - EPICS in IEEE
In order to respond to the Community Services needs and the undergraduate students future needs for solid expertise in their discipline, Purdue University has created EPICS: Engineering Projects In Community Service. EPICS is a unique program in which teams of undergraduates are designing, building, and deploying real systems to solve engineering-based problems for local community service and education organizations. EPICS was founded at Purdue University in Fall 1995. EPICS program aims at students to gain long-term define-design-build-test-deploy-support experience, communication skills, experience on multidisciplinary teams, and leadership and project management skills. They gain an awareness of professional ethics, the role of the customer in engineering design, and the role that engineering can play in the community. Community organizations gain access to technology and expertise that would normally be prohibitively expensive, giving them the potential to improve their quality of service or to provide new services. In the EPICS program, students work in teams and partner with a not-for-profit organization. Students design projects to meet the needs of this community partner enabling them to better serve residents in the local community. Partnerships are key to the EPICS program. The EPICS model involves the reciprocity of benefits of student, community and mentors. The community partners serve as the customers, corporate and higher education partners serve as mentor to the students offering expertise, and additional partnerships through foundations and philanthropic organizations offer financial and/or material support as needed.Projects are in four broad areas: human services, access and abilities, education and outreach, and the environment.
IEEE, the world’s largest technical professional organization dedicated to advancing technology for humanity, recently collaborated with EPICS program. EPICS in IEEE is an IEEE Foundation Priority Initiative that helps advance science, technology, engineering and mathematics (STEM) learning by providing real-world learning experiences that attract young people to the engineering profession. This new collaboration with India is part of a pilot program spearheaded by EPICS in IEEE and Purdue University’s EPICS department. Over 10 colleges and universities in India have been invited to participate in the program. These include: