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Florida Tech Student Design Showcase April 6 at Clemente Center

Free Public Event Features
Over 100 STEM Projects 

MELBOURNE, FLA. — Students in Florida Institute of Technology’s colleges of engineering and science will display their academic achievement and technical prowess at the Northrop Grumman Engineering & Science Student Design Showcase from 11 a.m. to 3 p.m. Friday, April 6, at the Clemente Center on campus.

Featuring engineering and science projects that creatively demonstrate Florida Tech’s renowned hands-on approach to education, the annual event is free and open to the public. The Clemente Center is located on University Boulevard just west of Babcock Street.

“It is one thing to be able to design a product, but it is another thing entirely to manufacture, build, test and present that product from start to finish, especially in a group setting,” said Ashton Tassinari, a senior majoring in mechanical engineering who was team leader in 2017 for the Formula Society of Automotive Engineering (SAE) car project.

In 2009, a $1 million endowment gift from Northrop Grumman Corporation provided ongoing support for the students’ work. Sponsorships from other local and national companies also assist. These gifts reflect a commitment to boosting interest in Science, Technology, Engineering and Math (STEM) programs and the value of learning beyond the classroom.

Showcase organizers note that project-based learning through student design gives students experience that not only helps them gain a better understanding of their field but also helps them acquire highly sought-after workplace skills like collaboration, communication and problem solving.

The showcase includes projects developed by undergraduate students working side by side in Florida Tech’s research and design facilities and applying classroom principles to real-world problems. Participating students, who must conceive, research and/or design and implement their projects, gain experience in applying science or engineering knowledge and the fundamental principles of their respective majors.

“For me, working with a student design team has been more than another group project,” Tassinari, the mechanical engineering senior, said. “It has made me a better engineer because I am a stronger teammate and leader, it has improved my communication skills immensely, taught me hands-on manufacturing skills, and improved my ability to understand theory in a practical way.”

Some of this year’s projects include Mars rovers systems, an artificially intelligent indoor farm, a robotic prosthetic hand, a police drone and a high-speed jet unmanned aerial vehicle.

At the conclusion of the showcase, Northrop Grumman officials will present “Best in Show” prizes for one project each from the engineering and science colleges. Florida Tech President Dwayne McCay will present President’s Cup awards to top projects from each college as well as a special award for design and innovation.

For more information on this and past showcases, visit www.fit.edu/student-design/.

EDITORS/PRODUCERS: Media are invited to attend the showcase and are asked to contact the University News Bureau at amunroe@fit.edu or 321-674-8964 to confirm attendance.

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