What We Do


Our Mission

Half of the students Who enter engineering as freshmen, drop out by their junior year…

Nationwide, the attrition rate for undergraduate engineering students is approximately 50%.  Furthermore, more than 90% of graduating seniors in engineering began their academic careers as engineers (compared to 50% and 60% in the social and physical sciences, respectively).  This means that, while the engineering attrition rate is not extraordinarily high, students typically do not decide to become engineers once they reach college.  Therefore, in order to produce more engineers nationally, we must retain and recruit better.  (Source)

Engineers are “applied” in nature. We believe that the unfavorable attrition rate in engineering is due, at least in part, to the difficult (and typically theoretical) science and math courses that students must take in their “engineering core” before they’ve had the opportunity to take some of the “real” engineering courses.  Therefore, InSPIRESS seeks to provide a context for these upper-level math and science courses.  We want to show high school students why they need the upper-level math/science courses, before they actually take them.

Engineering has gotten a bad reputation.  The InSPIRESS teams are presented with real-world, open-ended, engineering problems, and we walk with them through the solution and design process.  We think the best way to get people interested in engineering (and recruit more engineering students), is to introduce it to them when they are young, before they come to the false realization that engineering is hard, potentially scary, and a field devoid of creativity.  We want to show the high school students how fun, exciting, and varied real engineering can be.

We Are Providing an Environment for Our Students to Grow & Excel

Our Objective:

  • Create more engineers
  • Create better engineers


  • Lay foundation for engineering
  • Show spectrum and breadth of engineering
  • Provide a context for upper-level math and science courses


About Us

Who We Are

Aubrey Savery

InSPIRESS Chief Engineer

Email: [email protected]

Phone: 256.824.7629

Kristin Brevik

STEM Ed Director

Email: [email protected]

Phone: 701.899.1073

Matthew W. Turner, Ph.D.

SPARCC Lab Associate Manager

Email: [email protected]

Phone: 256.824.4629

Michael P.J. Benfield, Ph.D.

SPARCC Lab Manager

Email: [email protected]

Phone: 256.824.4629


Student Contacts


Years Established

Get In Touch

Location: 301 Sparkman Dr. Huntsville, AL 35899

Telephone: (256) 824-STEM (7836)

Email: [email protected]