June 14, 2009
June 14, 2009
June 17, 2009
Design in Engineering Education
14.1233.1 - 14.1233.15
The Liaison Engineer’s Guide: A Resource for Capstone Design Project Industrial Sponsors and Faculty Mentors
Industrially sponsored capstone design projects are rarely successful unless the sponsor company provides an engineering resource to support the project team. This liaison engineer serves as the primary advocate for the sponsor company’s needs and helps to focus the development team’s efforts on achieving the goals for the design project. These engineers play a crucial role in the successful completion of the project and more importantly in the education of new engineers.
The Integrated Product and Process Design program is an innovative educational initiative at the University of Florida. Over two semesters, (eight months), in weekly classes, students from various engineering and business disciplines are taught how to design products and processes. Then, working in small multidisciplinary teams under the guidance of faculty coaches and industrial liaison engineers, the students design and build authentic industrial products.
Over a thirteen-year period, spanning more than 300 industry-sponsored design projects, a wide variety of interaction patterns have been observed between project teams and liaison engineers. With help from the best liaisons and feedback from many faculty project mentors, a “how-to” guide was developed as a resource for liaison engineers. This guide includes an overview of the Integrated Product and Process Design program, roles and responsibilities for various stakeholders, a collection of best practices, and a frequently asked questions section.
A checklist for faculty project mentors was developed as a companion to the liaison engineer’s guide. This checklist helps to build rapport between the faculty mentor and the liaison engineer, and informs the liaison engineer about the Integrated Product and Process Design program milestones, travel dates, and available resources.
The Integrated Product and Process Design (IPPD) program1-4 is an innovative educational initiative at the College of Engineering, University of Florida. Over two semesters, (eight months), in weekly classes, students from various engineering and business disciplines are taught how to design products and processes. Then, working in small multidisciplinary teams under the guidance of faculty coaches and industrial liaison engineers, the students design and build authentic industrial products.
The IPPD program is institutionalized at the University of Florida and since the program launch in 1995, over 300 industry-sponsored multidisciplinary projects have been completed, with over 1800 students, more than 50 faculty coaches, and hundreds of company sponsor liaison engineers participating. While the IPPD development process is well defined and 90% of the projects are deemed successful, there is wide variability in the quality of the interactions between the sponsoring companies and the student project teams.
Stanfill, R. K., & Rajkumar, T. (2009, June), The Liaison Engineer’s Guide: A Resource For Capstone Design Project Industrial Sponsors And Faculty Mentors Paper presented at 2009 Annual Conference & Exposition, Austin, Texas. 10.18260/1-2--5596
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