Letter From The Chair
Staying connected is more important than ever, so I am pleased to send you the summer 2020 edition of our newsletter as newly appointed chair of the Mechanical Engineering Department.
Previous chair Dr. Steve Beyerlein has wisely steered our department, putting his indelible mark on the continuous improvement of our educational and research activities, as well as on infrastructure upgrades. I am hopeful we can continue to distinguish ourselves as a program offering high-quality student experience with focus on relevant technologies and engineering methods.
I joined the department in 2007, and I have been teaching and performing research in mechanics of materials. I have witnessed the continuous evolution of our department, especially through these challenging times. This fall, courses will be delivered in both in-class and online instruction formats to maintain our nationally recognized hands-on student experience, while taking the necessary measures to create a safe environment for our students, faculty and staff.
Continue reading below for more on our latest achievements and exciting projects that our faculty, staff and students have been working on through the summer and last semester. I hope you find the newsletter an informative and captivating read.
Stay healthy, Vandals!
Professor and Chair
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COVID-19 RESPONSE — Pages 1-2
- Using Expertise to Fight Back — Department calls on 3D printing and design expertise to partner with medical staff on personal protective equipment and UVC sterilization systems
TEACHING INNOVATIONS — Pages 2-3
- 15 Certified Solidworks Experts — Department adjusts coursework and provides exam vouchers to boost pass rates
- Preparing for Engineering Practice — Finite element method assignment added to Intermediate Mechanics of Materials ME 341
INFRASTRUCTURE IMPROVEMENTS — Page 3
- Nanoindenter Expands Research Capabilities — New equipment sees significant use by ME and other departments
UNDERGRADUATE STUDENT NEWS — Pages 4-6
- Saving Lives Through Sound Engineering and a Smart Business Plan — CatheterX team wins $16,000 total for prototype and business plan
- ASME Organizes Industry Visits to Four Locations — By Nick Brubaker, Jared Gray and Rachel Stanley
- Idaho Clean Snowmobile Team Places Fourth Overall — Third-quietest gasoline snowmobile in competition
- Outstanding COE Undergraduate Student Awards — Ian Glasgow and Kate Seegmiller received the 2020 Outstanding Senior award from College of Engineering.
- Taking the Path Not Prescribed — Camille Eddy ’20 finds expertise and academic support needed to reach career goals through non-traditional path to U of I
GRADUATE STUDENT NEWS — Page 7
FACULTY AND STAFF NEWS — Pages 7-10
- Professor Ralph Budwig Receives Two Awards — Donald Crawford Graduate Faculty Mentoring Award and Murdock Charitable Trust Partners in Science Award
- Boise Water Center Acquires Aquatic Imaging Flume — New features include optical access for Particle Imaging Velocimetry
- Round-Robin Testing of IN 718 Creep-Fatigue Crack Growth — U of I one of two universities invited to perform crack growth testing
- Assistant Professor Mike Maughan Earns ASME Advisor Honorable Mention — 2020 National Outstanding Student Section Advisor Award
- Faculty Present at APS Division of Fluid Dynamics Meeting — Dr. Ralph Budwig and Dr. Vibhav Durgesh were on the organizing committee for the 72nd Annual Meeting of the American Physical Society’s Division of Fluid Dynamics
- Dr. Tao Xing Earns Design, Teaching Certificate — Design and Teach Online (DTO) Certificate issued by the University of Wisconsin-Madison.
- Professor Steven Beyerlein Earns Award — College of Engineering 2020 Outstanding Faculty Award
- Donald Blackketter Inducted Into 2019 Academy of Engineers — Blackketter served as dean of the College of Engineering from 2008 to 2011
ALUMNI — Page 10
- Caitlin Owsley Earns Brave and Bold Award — 2012 graduate finishes final year as ME Advisory Board Chair
- Boston Earns White House Teaching Award — Presidential Award for Excellence in Mathematics and Science Teaching (PAEMST)
LETTER FROM THE CHAIR — Pages 11-12
- Pandemic Teaching Insights & Path Forward — Department welcomes incoming chair Professor Gabriel P. Potirniche, Lecturing Online, Hybrid/Flex Teaching
VIRTUAL DESIGN EXPO — Page 12
- Virtual Engineering Design EXPO Welcomes K-12 Across Three Countries — Judges score 41 virtual capstone presentations during 20 hours of simultaneous Zoom sessions