July 26, 2021
July 26, 2021
July 19, 2022
Fostering Entrepreneurial Mindset through a Hands-on Design Project in a Mechanism Design Course
This paper will describe a hands-on team design project that incorporates entrepreneurial mindset in a junior level Mechanism Analysis and Design course. The Mechanism Analysis and Design course is a 3-credit technical elective course offered at [Institution] that introduces the fundamentals of planar mechanisms and the application of kinematics in the analysis and synthesis of mechanisms. When the course was first taught with traditional lectures, assignments, and exams, most students found it not engaging and difficult to visualize how various mechanisms work. In an effort to address this issue, a hands-on group-based open-ended design project was developed and implemented in the course that not only covers the technical topics taught in the course, but also instills the entrepreneurial mindset.
In today’s global economy, engineering graduates need to be prepared with both a strong technical skillset and an entrepreneurial mindset in order to drive innovations. According to Kriewall and Mekemson , “an entrepreneurial minded engineer (i.e., an engineer instilled with the entrepreneurial mindset) places product benefits before design features and leverages technology to fill unmet customer needs”. The Kern Family Foundation has established a network of institutions that are committed to changing their pedagogy to develop entrepreneurial mindset in undergraduate engineers. Their entrepreneurial mindset framework involves the three C’s: curiosity: “students will demonstrate constant curiosity about our changing world and explore a contrarian view of accepted solutions”, connections: “students will integrate information from many sources to gain insight and access and manage risk”, and creating value: “students will identify unexpected opportunities to create extraordinary value and persist through and learn from failure” .
This paper will describe the design and implementation of the hands-on team design project. Student final project deliverable submissions will also be analyzed to learn about the ways through which student groups have demonstrated the entrepreneurial mindset in their projects and the results will be discussed.
References  Kriewall, T. J., and Mekemson, K. (2010), "Instilling the entrepreneurial mindset into engineering undergraduates." in the Journal of Engineering Entrepreneurship, 1.1, pp 5-19.
Zhu, H. (2021, July), Fostering Entrepreneurial Mindset through a Hands-on Design Project in a Mechanism Design Course Paper presented at 2021 ASEE Virtual Annual Conference Content Access, Virtual Conference. https://peer.asee.org/37201
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