On November 22, 2016, eight students from Meredith College’s Engineering Dual Degree program participated in the 17th Annual Freshman Engineering Design Day (FEDD) event hosted by North Carolina State University and the Introduction to Engineering and Problem Solving class. More than 1,300 first-year students competed with over 300 design teams.
FEDD is an end-of-semester opportunity for first-year engineering student teams to showcase their design projects and compete for awards. Teams competed by building projects such as bubble blowing machines, arcade games, collapsible bridges, water fountains, hovercrafts, and GE precision launchers. The competition allows students to put core design concepts into practice during their first semester while learning how to work successfully in a design team.
Four of the eight Meredith students were on teams that placed in the competition.
Elizabeth Goodwin, ’20, Emily Solis, ’19, and Mary Sharkawy, ’19, were on the Aqua Caduceus team, which placed second in the water fountain competition. The team produced a fountain design that had snakes spurting water from their mouths, part of a lamp and a vase that acted as a water reservoir, and a funnel that would tip over once it was filled to the top from the two water streams. The streams had to overcome gravity by at least one inch and the fountain had to have minimal splashing.
“We did not show up to win and we were actually feeling nervous,” said Goodwin. “It turns out that our project struck a lot of interest among the judges and other students. I was very pleased to know people were interested in our project which I think is better than any placement. Winning was a nice addition, and I think all of our hard work paid off nicely.”
Stephanie Sierra, ’19, was the sole Meredith student on The Dream Team, which placed third in the water fountain competition. Her team designed a fountain that was inspired by the Japanese Cherry Blossom. The objective of the project was to build an aesthetically pleasing fountain that fit a 2 foot by 2 foot square. The fountain had to have water flow against gravity with an additional engineering component. Each team could choose to incorporate water as an actuator, which means no electric pump, or a constructed laminar flow water movement as their engineering component.
“We were thankful for the experience because we were able to develop our team building skills and communication skills,” said Sierra. “We learned to overcome obstacles together while working on a project where adaptability was much needed. It is a skill we will each use in the future.”
Madalene Adams, ’19, was a member of the Projectile Pack, where she helped her team create a projectile precision launcher. Ansley Harris, ’19, and Ellis Hudson, ’20, were part of The H2Owlers, another team that competed in the water fountain category. Nadia Smith, ’20, was a member of The Mind of Universe team, which built a collapsible bridge out of fiberboard.
“I greatly enjoyed this experience,” said Adams. “I loved being able to work in a group and brainstorm to get the final product. My favorite part is when we got to work with our hands and create the actual precision launcher.”