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Student design expo highlights research and design efforts of more than 50 Golden Bears

Students showcase their research projects at the 2017 Student Design Exposition

On Thursday, April 13, nearly 200 WVU Tech students, faculty, staff, alumni and members of industry packed the Tech Center Ballroom for the third-annual Student Design Exposition.

The expo showcased the work of more than 50 WVU Tech students from computer science, engineering technology and the chemical, civil, electrical and mechanical engineering fields.

Attendees spent time with 19 comprehensive projects ranging from robotics to clean energy. They explored wind turbine designs, played educational video games and examined everything from remote-controlled planes to concrete bowling balls.

Senior mechanical engineering major, Yazid Amrani, was the principal organizer of the event. He said he was happy to see so many visitors to the expo, which grew in attendance by nearly 30% over the previous year. He was also pleased to see so many members of local industry in attendance.

“The ultimate goal of the design expo is to become an event that serves like a reverse career fair where employers that are pursuing similar projects in their respective industries recruit students who are working on projects that are matching industry needs,” he said.

Beyond simply displaying student work, Amrani said the expo is about developing skills that are essential in the modern STEM workplace; skills such as pitching ideas, demonstrating the value of a project and talking about their work in a public setting.

“Student presenters stepped out from their comfort zone to evaluate and produce an economic analysis of their product. An event like this enables us, the junior engineers, to develop the entrepreneurship mindset that is very important when working on innovative projects like the ones we have seen during the expo,” he said.  

Amrani said the event is also about exchanging ideas and getting a handle on what a senior design project truly entails.

“Something that I love about the design expo is that students from all engineering disciplines at WVU Tech come together to discuss their projects,” he said. 

“A freshman from Spain said it gave him a clear idea on what will be expected from him during his senior year. He also said that he came to the event to see what projects match his interest so he could get in touch with the student presenters to try and get an early-start for his senior project.”

WVU Tech students Trevor Johnson, Fernanda Delduque, Matthew Siomos and Manuel Serrano also worked to organize the 2017 expo. Mechanical engineering professor, Dr. Yogendra Panta, served as faculty advisor for the event.

Check out photos from the expo on Flickr:

Student Design Expo 2017