Undergraduate Blog

Enjoy this fun story from EM junior Taylor.

Engineering finals: A story in gifs

December 9, 2015 -   You just got back from Thanksgiving Break, and finals are coming soon.  People are telling you to start studying.  “Still got a couple weeks,” you say.  “No big deal. 
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Taylor offers some tips for finals prep success this week.

T minus 10...

December 8, 2015 -   It’s the end of the homestretch now and finals are about to begin.  I was wondering how different people prepare for finals, so I took a survey.
Undergraduate, Taylor
In a new blog series, Views of MechSE, Taylor shares original photos she captured from around campus.

Views of MechSE: December gallery

December 2, 2015 - MEL from across Boneyard Creek. In the lobby of Loomis Lab. Boneyard Creek in the mid-November rain.
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EM undergrad Taylor sums up the big things you need to know as a MechSE sophomore.

Things you should know by sophomore year

November 29, 2015 -   Here’s a list for you of things I’ve found that sophomores in particular should definitely know. Some of this is specific to my major (engineering mechanics).   “The flowsheet is a guideline, not a rule.”  I have heard that many times.  Let me clarify what it actually means.  The flowsheet is basically a list of every class you need to take in order to graduate.
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How not to explode your Thanksgiving turkey, and a story of thanks from Taylor.

Thank you for the blessings

November 19, 2015 - The holiday season is beginning and Thanksgiving is nearly here!  Here’s some interesting science for you: as you’ve probably heard on the news, throwing a frozen turkey into a deep fryer or even the oven can cause it to explode.  This is because frozen meat is full of moisture.  When the meat experiences a sudden spike in temperature from the overload of heat, the moisture inside it is vaporized and turns to gas molecules.
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In a new blog series, Views of MechSE, Taylor shares original photos she captured from around campus.

Views of MechSE: November gallery

November 12, 2015 -   View looking out to the south from within Talbot's crane bay. Next to the west main bridge on the Bardeen Quad.
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Wondering what TAM 335 is all about? Taylor has the scoop.

Overview of TAM 335: Fluid Mechanics

November 11, 2015 - This semester I’m taking fluid mechanics. I really didn’t know anything about it before I signed up.  Hopefully here I can answer some questions other people might have.   TAM 335 is taught by Professor Keane. Some of the concepts covered are based on differential equations, so concurrent or prior registration in a diff equations class can be very helpful.
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Ever wondered about the science behind color? Taylor explains it in a way we can all understand.

In living color

October 29, 2015 -   For artists, color theory is a guide to mixing colors and is especially useful for achieving goals such as a special effect or a certain pigment. However, there’s actually a lot of science in colors. For anyone who’s taken physics 214 or any class that works with photons, the electromagnetic spectrum should be familiar.
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ASME continues their tradition for 2015 Homecoming with a fun parade float.

ASME reps MechSE with Homecoming parade float

October 22, 2015 -   Edit (11/12/2015): The ASME float won the campus' first place prize for their design.  This year, ASME has constructed their annual Homecoming parade float, hoping that it will capture the excitement of Homecoming and the school spirit of Illinois. 
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If you aren't familiar with the "Crusher" in Talbot Lab, Taylor gives you several reasons why you should get to know it.

The Iron Giant

October 21, 2015 -   The Southwark-Emery Universal Testing Machine in Talbot Lab has a variety of uses.In the back of Talbot Lab is a crane bay that is home to the Southwark-Emery Universal Testing Machine. Assembled in 1929, the two-story tall machine can load up to 3,000,000 pounds in tension or compression and can measure the applied force within one tenth of one percent.
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MechSE faculty, staff, grad students, and undergrads showed their guests many of the exciting educational experiences the department offers.

MechSE Open House 2015 draws freshmen, prospective students

October 15, 2015 -     On Friday, October 9, the MechSE Department hosted a departmental open house with exhibits and demonstrations in Mechanical Engineering Laboratory. Prospective MechSE students - top high school students from around the state, with their parents - visited to discover many of the exciting educational experiences the department offers.
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Assistant Professor Shelby Hutchens leads the Thermodynamics undergrad students in the first poster session for the course.

Undergrads share real-world energy system findings during ME 300 poster session

October 14, 2015 -     Several undergraduates in MechSE’s Thermodynamics course (ME 300) participated in their first poster session, held October 12 in MEL.
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Looking for fun things to do in C-U now that fall is definitely here? Taylor gives you lots of options!

As the trees turn

October 8, 2015 -     Even with the seventy degree days, it has definitely turned to fall here on campus.  Here is a list of fall activity ideas for the off chance that anyone has enough free time to do them.
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In a new blog series, Views of MechSE, Taylor shares some awesome photos she captured around campus.

Views of MechSE: October gallery

October 5, 2015 -   The Engineer, reading outside of Grainger Library. View of the Boneyard Creek from Mathews Street, looking south.
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Taylor explores the unique history of buildings and historic sites on the Illinois campus.

Tracing the growth of Illinois

September 30, 2015 -   As we are all aware, the campus is constantly changing and growing. Forty years ago, the Bardeen Quad had MEL, Talbot, and Everitt. Farther north was DCL.
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Engineering freshmen design LEGO-Bots for their Engineering 100 course.

Freshmen LEGO-Bot designs compete for Engineering 100 title

September 24, 2015 - MechSE student teams’ LEGO-Bots developed in this semester's Engineering 100 course were on full display September 16 in the atrium of Mechanical Engineering Lab. For the final class meeting, the teams’ creations competed in a ball-gathering contest, with one winner crowned for each of three class sessions. 
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Taylor spent an awesome summer working with an airplane mechanic at Blodgett Memorial Airport in Houghton Lake, Michigan.

More fun than a barrel of grease monkeys

September 20, 2015 -   Over the summer I spent a few weeks working with an aircraft mechanic in a full-service hangar at Blodgett Memorial Airport (KHTL) in Houghton Lake, Michigan. I am not a certified mechanic, so there were some limits as to what I could do. However, this did not diminish the skills I was able to learn.   There are different levels of aircraft mechanics.
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Taylor writes about her amazing experience at the annual summer airplane fair in Oshkosh, Wisconsin.

Endless sea of wings

September 10, 2015 -   Every year for one week in July, thousands of planes fly to Oshkosh, Wisconsin, for the convention widely known as Oshkosh. Formally called EAA Airventure, hosted by the Experimental Aircraft Association and held at Wittman Regional Airport, Oshkosh is a living dream for anyone who loves airplanes. Over this past summer I finally made it back to Oshkosh for the first time in eight years.
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The Fall 2015 Corporate After Hours, co-hosted with ISE, introduced undergraduates to exciting new companies looking to recruit.

Corporate After Hours welcomes exciting new companies

September 9, 2015 -   MechSE's undergraduate students met with representatives from 15 companies on the evening of September 8, 2015 at MechSE’s Corporate After Hours.
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A team of researchers led by a professor in the College of Education are looking at MechSE's TAM courses for inspiration in collaborative learning.

Research for improving education looks at TAM students

June 11, 2015 - College of Education Professor Emma Mercier with her multi-touch tables in the lab classroom.College of Education Professor Emma Mercier is studying how TAM students work in groups as part of her research on collaborative learning.
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