Engineering Faculty and Students Awarded Fall 2019 NASA CT Space Grants

Engineering Faculty and Students Awarded Fall 2019 NASA CT Space Grants

harvey hoffman, phd

School of Engineering Associate Dean Harvey Hoffman, PhD, has been awarded a Fall 2019 NASA CTSGC grant for his service learning class proposal.

Associate Dean Harvey Hoffman, PhD, of the School of Engineering, and three Fairfield engineering undergraduate students: Keith McHugh '20, Mitchell Owen '20, and Salena Hingorani '21 are among the Fall 2019 NASA Connecticut Space Grant Consortium awardees.

The NASA Connecticut Space Grant Consortium (CTSGC) has announced the recipients of its Fall 2019 Call for Proposals.  Among the awardees this semester, Fairfield University’s School of Engineering is represented by one of eight faculty grant recipients and three of 26 student grant awardees from a dozen NASA CTSGC academic affiliate member institutions. Congratulations to the following Fairfield University awardees:

Harvey Hoffman, PhD, for Faculty STEM Education Programming:

Dr. Harvey Hoffman, associate dean of the School of Engineering has been awarded a grant for his service learning class proposal, “Afterschool Robotics With Wakeman Boys and Girls Club,” to be offered in Spring 2020. The project aims to build a STEM pathway through mentorship between undergraduates and middle school students.

In the class, approximately 15 undergraduate engineering students at Fairfield University will be equipped with the knowledge and skills to engage in robot building. The students will then convey their technical knowledge and demonstrate leadership skills at a Wakeman Boys and Girls Club after-school program where they will teach 15 middle school students how to build an obstacle-avoiding robot.

This service learning opportunity aligns with the School of Engineering’s mission to instill ‘service to humanity’ character in its students, and will also help undergraduates gain leadership skills and confidence in their ability to distill and communicate high-level technical topics – important qualities for an engineer.

Middle school students participating in the after-school program stand to expand their creative thinking ability and gain an awareness of STEM disciplines, increasing their chances of choosing engineering and technology fields of study in the future.

Keith McHugh ’20: Student Project:

Of all the plastics used and thrown away every day in this country, only 9 percent are currently recycled. The goal of McHugh’s senior design project, “Device to Convert Plastic Bottles Into Household Objects,” is to design and fabricate a desktop device that will allow users to take plastic bottles of varying sizes and turn them into long bands of plastic that can be used for other applications, such as 3-D printing filament.

This objective is in line with the strategic mission of NASA for sustainable long-term space exploration; McHugh, a mechanical engineering major, envisions a device compact enough to be included in space missions.

Mitchell Owen ’20: Student Travel 

Mechanical engineering and computer science double-major Mitchell Owen has been awarded a student travel grant for his team of three fellow engineering students to conduct computer science research at the Federal Aviation Administration, William J. Hughes Technical Center in Atlantic City, N.J. The nation's premier air transportation system laboratory is a one-of-a-kind, world-class environment for engineers, scientists, and mathematicians to conduct applied research and develop scientific solutions to current and future air transportation safety challenges.

Salena Hingorani ’21: Undergraduate Scholarship

Electrical engineering major Salena Hingorani has been awarded an undergraduate scholarship. The NASA CTSGC scholarship program encourages and supports academically outstanding undergraduate students in preparation for careers in engineering.

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