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A Reborn Product Design And Manufacturing Program

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2005 Annual Conference


Portland, Oregon

Publication Date

June 12, 2005

Start Date

June 12, 2005

End Date

June 15, 2005



Conference Session

Manufacturing Program Innovation

Page Count


Page Numbers

10.78.1 - 10.78.8



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NOTE: The first page of text has been automatically extracted and included below in lieu of an abstract

A Reborn Product Design and Manufacturing Program

Hugh Jack, Associate Professor School of Engineering, Grand Valley State University


The Manufacturing Program at Grand Valley State University has been redesigned to include a focus on products. This addresses the current challenges with recruiting students by creating a more understandable and approachable image. It also addresses the ‘outsourcing’ trends in manufacturing by revising the curriculum. This paper describes the reasoning behind the changes and the structure of the revised program.


Like most ABET accredited Manufacturing Engineering programs in the country, we were seeing a decline in enrollment, even though the enrollment in other disciplines was increasing. This was not because there was a lack of demand for our graduates from the manufacturing sector, but because students were selecting other areas of study. In many cases this decision was based upon poor impressions of manufacturing (the dirty factory), a lack of knowledge about Manufacturing Engineering, or impressions that manufacturing jobs were disappearing [8]. We are reversing this trend with a redesign of the program.

This paper describes a program change that should increase enrollment by reforming the manufacturing curriculum to include an emphasis on products. This change helps to define the discipline and makes it easier to clarify our public image. The expected outcomes are increased student enrollment and better prepared graduates. Briefly, the redesign involves the creation of a product design thread in the curriculum and a name change to “Product Design and Manufacturing”. The following sections include the justification for the changes and a description of the new courses and curriculum that are consistent with the ABET criteria. In fact the changes will satisfy the criteria better than the existing program.

The program must demonstrate that graduates have proficiency in materials and manufacturing processes: understanding the behavior and properties of materials as they are altered and influenced by processing in manufacturing; process, assembly and product engineering: understanding the design of products and the equipment, tooling, and environment necessary for their manufacture; manufacturing competitiveness: understanding the creation of competitive advantage through manufacturing planning, strategy, and

Proceedings of the 2005 American Society for Engineering Education Annual Conference and Exposition Copyright © 2005, American Society for Engineering Education

Jack, H. (2005, June), A Reborn Product Design And Manufacturing Program Paper presented at 2005 Annual Conference, Portland, Oregon. 10.18260/1-2--15558

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