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Career Drivers

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Clarkson prepares you for the way the world actually works. Your education here will involve working on a wide variety of teams designed to help you gain applicable, real-life experience. After all, in today's complex world the biggest achievements are invariably a result of teamwork, often on a multitude of levels.

So across the curriculum we emphasize a hands-on, collaborative approach to tackling complex, open-ended problems — just the kind of challenges and approach you'll find in the real world. You'll work side by side with students from other disciplines whose concerns are different from your own. In the process, you'll come to understand the collective power of teams, become an efficient problem solver, gain leadership skills, learn to communicate effectively, and gain a better grasp of the big picture.

Combining Business, Engineering and Science
In addition to working on team projects in many class assignments, Clarkson students join teams in extracurricular academic competitions that can range from business entrepreneurship to computer programming in science to environmental remediation in engineering. And many of these teams combine students from different majors to help with specific challenges.

Every year, some 350 Clarkson students get involved in Student Projects for Engineering Experience and Design (SPEED) in which they compete against student teams from other universities to design, fabricate, test — and possibly market — inventions such as solar-powered airplanes, concrete canoes, ATVs and race cars. And it's not just engineering students who are involved. These projects require students from a wide variety of disciplines including business, communication, manufacturing, engineering, science and mathematics to work together quickly to create original, innovative products.

SPEED currently includes 14 exciting design projects run by students who are advised by faculty. These include: Concrete Canoe; Construction Management; Destination Imagination; Design, Build and Fly; Environmental Design; FIRST Robotics; Formula SAE; Manufacturing Experiential Learning Program; Mini Baja; Partners in Education; Snowmobile Challenge; Solar Car Racing; Steel Bridge; and Timber Bridge.

Practical Experience
As a business student, nothing prepares you more for the real world than studying the intricacies of how a business is run, or working with a team of students to operate your own business. The Clarkson Chapter of the Collegiate Entrepreneurs’ Organization (CEO) is Clarkson’s most active club with approximately 100 members. It operates several businesses including the kiosk in the Cheel Campus Center. The Collegiate Entrepreneurs’ Organization develops entrepreneurial skills by starting and running independent businesses. There are more than 500 chapters nationally and in 2005-2006, Clarkson was named the Most Outstanding Chapter for 2005-06, the national organization's highest honor.

Clarkson undergraduates also gain practical hands-on experience by joining student consulting teams that assist area businesses and other organizations in addressing actual problems in areas that run the gamut of challenges from marketing analyses to production efficiency issues.

Ashlie Gregoire