Undergraduate Education Program

Westminster College

Bonnie Baxter, Matt Kruback, Jaimi Butler
Salt Lake City, UT
December 2016

The Great Salt Lake Institute currently engages undergraduate students in its regionally oriented science curriculum and in the community of Westminster College, the only liberal arts college in Utah.  With the lake as a thematic umbrella, the institute facilitates collaboration between disciplines and encourages inclusive perspectives.  This project supports incorporation of the Arts in STEM and endeavors to create a STEAM program called SALT: Scientists and Artists Learning Together.  STEAM approaches are effective at inspiring innovation and affecting learning outcomes, but they are rare at the undergraduate level.  The new approach is envisioned to address the lack of undergraduate curricula in STEAM, expand interdisciplinary creativity, and address process skills such as inquiry, design, and experimentation, by combining disciplines in an equal and collaborative way.  The SALT project will: (1) create transformative and transferrable STEAM courses, (2) develop a summer STEAM research program that allows student/faculty teams to explore creativity, and (3) inspire others by assessing and conveying the successes of SALT to the broader community.  Mixed interdisciplinary groups of students and faculty in SALT will highlight the creative process in all STEAM disciplines to bridge gaps and stimulate new conversations.

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