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Industry-Based Senior Projects and the Four Pillars of Manufacturing Engineering

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2014 ASEE Annual Conference & Exposition


Indianapolis, Indiana

Publication Date

June 15, 2014

Start Date

June 15, 2014

End Date

June 18, 2014



Conference Session

Best Practices and Lessons Learned in Capstone Design Projects

Tagged Division


Page Count


Page Numbers

24.741.1 - 24.741.9



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Paper Authors

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Christopher P. Pung Grand Valley State University


Hugh Jack Grand Valley State University Orcid 16x16

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Dr. Hugh Jack is a registered professional engineer currently teaching Product Design and Manufacturing at Grand Valley State University. His areas of interest include automation, controls, and robotics.

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Title: Industry Based Senior Projects and the Four Pillars of Manufacturing EngineeringAbstract:The Four Pillars of Manufacturing Engineering model focuses on the ties between academic programs andengineering practice. The pillars of the model focus on fundamental topic areas expected in anymanufacturing program graduate. The foundation and lentil of the model address basic knowledge andcompetencies. The model is also recommended for other programs that are educating graduates who willserve industry. By addressing some or all of the Four Pillars model, programs will better prepare theirstudents for professional practice.The engineering program at XXX has an interdisciplinary senior project program combining students inComputer, Electrical, Mechanical, and Product Design and Manufacturing Engineering. Companies submitproject applications, normally involving product designs, production equipment, and test equipment. Theapplications are vetted by faculty whom approve applications and assign project teams. Once approved, theteams do the design, build, and test work with funding from the sponsor. Faculty manage the academicaspects of the projects, while the sponsors approve technical work. Projects must satisfy faculty andsponsor for successful completion. As a result a majority of project outcomes are put into use in production,used in testing, or added to a companies product lineup. A number of the projects have resulted in patents.Industry focused projects has made graduates highly prized by employers, and the program well supportedby industry.The paper will explore the relationship between the four pillars model and industry focused senior project.This will include the strengths and weaknesses of the approach.

Pung, C. P., & Jack, H. (2014, June), Industry-Based Senior Projects and the Four Pillars of Manufacturing Engineering Paper presented at 2014 ASEE Annual Conference & Exposition, Indianapolis, Indiana. 10.18260/1-2--20633

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