The Sterling Olmsted Award honors those who have made distinguished contributions to the development and teaching of liberal arts in engineering education. It is the highest award given by the Liberal Education/Engineering and Society Division of the ASEE.
The LEES nominating committee (John Brocato, chair; Erin Cech; Atsushi Akera; Juan Lucena; Cherrice Travers) is pleased to present the 2017 Sterling Olmsted Award to Amy E. Slaton, professor of history at Drexel University.
Amy holds a PhD in the History and Sociology of Science from the University of Pennsylvania. Her research focuses on the history of technical expertise and work, seen through the lens of historical ideas of human difference. Her most recent book, Race, Rigor and Selectivity in U.S. Engineering: The History of an Occupational Color Line (Harvard University Press, 2010), follows racial ideologies in engineering higher education since the 1940s. Her current book project, All Good People: Diversity, Difference and Opportunity in High-Tech America, to be published by MIT, describes the limits of American commitments to equity around race, gender, LGBTQ and disabilities as those are expressed in the training of the nation’s industrial workforce. She is co-editor with Tiago Saraiva of the journal History & Technology.
Her areas of interest include the following:
• Social relations of Industrial labor including workplace distributions of skill and knowledge, managerial methods, and social character of mechanization and automation
• Workforce planning and technical education
• Metrology, instrumentation and standards in engineering and the physical sciences
• Intersectional understandings of identity, including race, ethnicity, gender, LGBTQ identities and physical and intellectual disability