On Thursday, April 3, UPEI’s annual Engineering Expo participants educated attendees, including approximately 200 junior high and high school students on their innovative designs, and on the exciting field of engineering. The event was open to the public, with students from the PEI Science Fair also attending for special tours of the event, and to learn more about engineering at UPEI.
First-year engineering students had the opportunity to work with the Farm Centre Association (FCA) on its new initiative; a community-based, research and demonstration garden/farm housed at the Charlottetown Experimental Farm. The students developed sustainable designs from windmills to pump water, to composters, to a hybrid bicycle/shopping cart for transportation that could be used on the farm. The project took seven months of researching, analyzing, building, and testing solutions, and offered an engaging and educational agricultural landscape that celebrates the past, present, and future of farming on the Island.
“The research and science behind their work is truly impressive. It was an excellent opportunity for us, as well as the general public to see the students’ work, and be inspired at the creative genius that is being instigated by their dedicated and enthusiastic professors,” said Phil Ferraro, Executive Director of the Farm Centre. “Next week, the students will be presenting additional details on their design and building plans. When summer arrives, we hope to test some of their prototypes on site, and we encourage everyone to come visit and join in the fun.”
The second-year engineering students worked with nine clients from PEI, Newfoundland, and Kenya. Clients included The Mount Continuing Care Community, Country View Farms, Dr. Bill Whelan, Magine Snowboards, Mikinduri Children of Hope, PEI Bag Company, Vector Aerospace, UPEI Student Union, and UPEI Engineering.
“The enthusiasm the students display is infectious, and the skill and quality of the second-year projects are a great indication of how much can be expected once UPEI offers an engineering degree,” said Libby Osgood, assistant professor of engineering at UPEI.
Expo award recipients:
Engineers PEI Team Design Award—This award is presented each year to the student design team that best exemplifies innovation, excellence, and professionalism in a client-oriented community-based design project. The winning team will combine creative design ideas supported by in-depth analysis, detailed design documentation, and an effective demonstration of concept. This year’s recipients include: Mikinduri Children of Hope Charcoal Press second-year project. Team members are Daniel Larsen, Keilah Bias, Alex Gamble, and Spencer Montgomery. Top design for first-year students was awarded to Saheed Alatishe, Amy Andrews, Brent Simmons, and Marc Thibodeau.
Noel MacAleer Award—Awarded to a graduating student from the engineering class who displays the positive attributes and qualities of the late Noel MacAleer—an extremely well-liked student who was respected by his classmates, who was enthusiastic and generous, and who became a friend and motivator to all. This year’s recipient is Joshua Kelly.
UPEI’s Department of Engineering presents communication and analysis awards annually to individual students who display contribution and excellence in their team environment.
Communication Award—“Generally recognized as the ‘softer’ skills including the ability to formulate and communicate the chosen design story using a broad selection of tools including verbal, textual, and graphical techniques. Recognizes that engineering is really the art of applying science to make a compelling argument with a high degree of professionalism and consideration for public safety.” The communication awards were granted to first-year recipient Emily Dennis and second-year recipient Keilah Bias.
Analysis Award— “Generally recognized as the ‘harder’ skills including the ability to understand the clients problems and analyze the problems using a broad selection of scientific, mathematical, and engineering knowledge. Recognizes that engineers must be scientifically and mathematically capable, with an ability to translate the knowledge and skill into innovative (new territory) solutions with predictable performance. It is this predictable performance that requires a sound understanding of the problem and an ability to use engineering tools and prototyping, to predict the performance and safety of the systems.” The analysis awards were granted to first-year recipient Brent Simmons and second-year recipient Vuk Stajic.
Leadership Award— Awarded to a senior student who demonstrates capability and leadership in all aspects of engineering communication and analysis. This award was granted to Emma MacKay.