Architecture, Engineering and Design

E.E. Ford Program in Architecture, Engineering and Design for the Common Good

The E.E. Ford Program in Architecture, Engineering and Design for the Common Good is an innovative, two-year program for juniors and seniors that provides instruction in courses not typically taught at the secondary school level.

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The interdisciplinary STEAM curriculum combines the study of art and architecture with science, technology, engineering and mathematics. Arts education fosters the creative thinking needed to develop innovative new products and industries, and is an important component of the course.

What makes this program so distinct isn’t solely that Holy Child is pushing back aggressively against an absentee culture of women in engineering and architecture, it is the fact Holy Child recognizes that students are better served when their work has an anchor to a real world issue they can tackle, hence the community connection. Holy Child knows that a rich education is one that clearly demonstrates the connections between both disciplines and peoples, and we fully expect this program to inspire and prepare our girls for advanced study in fields often dominated by men.

Field-based study includes:

  • Participation in hands-on design labs
  • Attendance at lectures on engineering principles by college professors
  • Meet & Greet opportunities with practicing engineers and architects
  • Visiting companies to explore the many different forms of engineering in the real world.

The year-long junior seminar culminates with an immersion program in June where students begin the community-based engineering and design project that will become the subject of their senior thesis. The senior design project must improve some aspect of the community experience, either on the Holy Child campus itself or in the surrounding neighborhoods.

Critical to meeting the goals of the E.E. Ford Program, School of the Holy Child recently opened its new 700-square-foot Design Studio on campus. This unique and dedicated space provides students with authentic experiences in engineering, innovation and design that will have a direct impact on the communities and world around us. The studio includes a multi-purpose workshop and classrooms for students studying STEAM (Science, Technology, Engineering, Art, and Math) fields. The first floor has meeting areas and work spaces for classes and collaboration. The second floor of the studio provides the tools and resources for design projects. It features a 3-D printer, laser cutter, thermoformer, 3-D milling machine, sewing machine, circuit kits, and a variety of hand tools for the creation of physical prototypes.

Class of 2016 Senior Design Projects include:

  • Improving Functional Knee Braces for Student Athletes
  • Application of the Design Process to Building an Underground Track at Holy Child
  • Acoustic Tent for Outdoor Performances on the Holy Child Campus
  • Solar Energy at Habitat for Humanity and the Possibilities of 3D Printed Solar Cells
  • Reinforcing the Importance of STEAM in Young Female Education