University of Washington: Nurturing practical problem-solving by providing engineering students with reliable and searchable engineering information

Zachary Brown, former student of University of Washington-Seattle, shares his perspective on how Knovel can help students and how it empowers him to do his work.

Don’t ever stop learning. That’s the advice structural engineer, Zach Brown offers not only to students, but to every science and engineering professional — beginner or veteran. Just because you graduate and have a degree doesn’t mean you’re done , he says. Engineering is a field of constant innovation and new development. New technologies emerge all the time. To stay current, you’ve got to read the news, you’ve got to read articles, read new texts that are published, all different kinds of information.

Interview with Zachary Brown, University of Washington – Knovel | Elsevier


As Brown explains, many of today’s engineering students graduate with a skills gap that keeps them from being able to succeed in the industry straight out of university. Brown also sees a communication disconnect between what employers are expecting and what universities are able to deliver. As a result, new graduates often face a steep learning curve. Universities do just enough, so that you have a really firm understanding of the fundamentals, but that’s all they can cram into four years. They give you enough to…build upon. And it’s up to you to continue building.


Brown sees mentoring as an essential element in closing not just this skills gap but the communications gap as well. And a key part of his mentoring centers around Knovel. For him, Knovel is an organization that’s involved in education — not just in the university sense or even after that — but in the sense that Knovel bridges that gap between education and career.

quote, University of Washington - Knovel | Elsevier

Knovel for me is an irreplaceable resource. It helps me grow the breadth and depth of my engineering knowledge.

Zachary Brown, University of Washington


As Brown and many in the industry already know, the struggle to close the knowledge gap never really ends. With constant new developments, the gap is always growing. That’s why Brown sees the information Knovel provides and his ability to access that information from anywhere as empowering. He knows there will always be more to learn and more to discover. But he also knows that Knovel will be there to support him, providing the information he and his peers need to stay on top of new developments in the fields of science and technology.

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