Seminar Series – Taryn Bayles, Ph.D.

Date(s) - 09/20/2022
9:15 am - 10:15 am

New Engineering Building - Room 100


Taryn Bayles, Ph.D.
Professor, Teaching Track, and Vice Chair of Undergraduate Education
Chemical & Petroleum Engineering Department
University of Pittsburgh 

Title: Engaging Students with Hands-On Engineering Design Projects 

Abstract: STEM outreach programs can make science and engineering more appealing and accessible for students from kindergarten through college. Programs that involve young people and those who influence them over significant periods of time are more effective in influencing these aspirations. An overview of various outreach programs will be provided, as well as hands-on engineering design projects which have real world relevance. Threaded by STEM content and utilizing the engineering design process, these projects are inexpensive to implement and are easily adaptable to a wide range of audiences, from high-school outreach programs to first-year design courses to junior level transport courses. These projects allow students to develop their transferable skills; including solving open-ended problems, ability to effectively work in teams, ability to think creatively, ability to synthesize what is learned in science and math classes and apply that knowledge to a real-world problem, ability to think creatively and the ability to communicate technical ideas. Some of these projects include a hemodialysis system, renewable energy system, heart lung system, hot air balloons, and contaminated water purification system. The projects have professionally produced videos which introduce the design challenge and provide the real-world context, and hands-on exploration activities which help students understand key concepts and help them to scaffold the successful design of their projects. Videos taken during design project testing will also be featured.

Taryn Bayles is a Professor, Teaching Track, and Vice Chair of Undergraduate Education in the Chemical & Petroleum Engineering Department at the University of Pittsburgh. She started her career working in process engineering, computer modeling & control, process design & testing and engineering management with Exxon, Westinghouse, Phillips Petroleum, Sandia National Labs and PETC. Bayles subsequently spent over 20 years teaching Chemical Engineering at the University of Nevada Reno, University of Pittsburgh, University of Maryland College Park, and the University of Maryland Baltimore County.

Bayles actively researches best practices in Engineering Education and Outreach. Key objectives of her work include increasing awareness of and interest in pursuing engineering as a career, as well as understanding what factors help students be successful once they have chosen engineering as a major. Although research is not a part of her formal responsibilities, Bayles has secured over $7.5M of funding from NSF to support these efforts. She has led over 160 workshops with over 7,500 participants and her various outreach programs and curriculum development have impacted more than 22,000 K-12 students.

Bayles has been recognized with the 2021 ASEE Don Woods Lectureship for Lifetime Achievement in Chemical Engineering Pedagogy, the 2020 ASEE Lifetime Achievement Award in the Pre-College Engineering Education Division, Excellence in Teaching awards, and the University System of Maryland Board of Regents Award in both Excellence in Mentoring and Collaboration in Public Service.

Bayles is an AIChE Fellow, CTOC Director, AIChE Student Chapter and Chem-E-Car Advisor and has served as the Chair of the AIChE Education Division and ASEE CHED and PCEE Programming Chairs. She also served on the Organizing & Finance Committees of the 2022 ASEE/AIChE Chemical Engineering Summer School. She earned her BSChE at New Mexico State University and MSChE, MSPetE and PhD ChE from the University of Pittsburgh.