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Senior Design

Theoretical expertise meets hands-on learning as seniors prepare for real-world engineering.

A requirement for graduation, student teams take on year-long capstone projects, putting their problem-solving skills to the test and collaborating to take an idea from concept to design to protype. In May, teams present their work to an audience of industry experts, faculty advisors, students, family, and friends of the School of Engineering at the annual Senior Design Conference—a highlight of our academic year.

But how do students choose their projects? While faculty advisors have a list of projects students may choose from, some come up with their own ideas. Recently, projects focused on a surgical device to treat sleep apnea, an aerial drone system for wineries to check in on the health of their vines, improved construction techniques for a rural village in Ghana, a low cost 3D bioprinter, satellite control systems, and much, much more. There's a world...and a galaxy...of opportunity awaiting!

Hold your tongue: bioengineering seniors Erin Araj, Leah Karlsen, and Abby Kilkenny with Erik van der Burg are designing better tools to fight potentially deadly Obstructive Sleep Apnea.

To Sleep—Perchance to Breathe

A nighttime slumber for adults affected by Obstructive Sleep Apnea (OSA) can include repeated bouts of breathlessness for up to a minute at a time. The malady can lead to side effects—memory problems, high blood pressure, depression and even death. But not if bioengineering seniors Erin Araj, Leah Karlsen, and Abby Kilkenny can help it.

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Mugging for the camera, from left: Matthew Allen, Kevin Read, Sam Billett, and Maryam Khanbaghi

Building A Better Nest

Noticing so much popular attention paid to the Nest Learning Thermostat and facing the challenge of their year-long capstone project, electrical engineering seniors Matthew Allen, Sam Billett, and Kevin Read fixed their laser-like focus on fuzzy logic.

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