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First Virtual Design Expo Showcases Swanson Undergrads’ Ingenuity

PITTSBURGH (Dec. 14, 2020) — Every semester, University of Pittsburgh engineering students make their way to Soldiers and Sailor Memorial Hall to put forth their best designs at the Design Expo. However, like so many events in 2020, this year’s event had to go virtual.

The first ever Virtual Design Expo at the University of Pittsburgh’s Swanson School of Engineering took place on Nov. 23 from 6 to 8:30 p.m. 

Using the conference platform Accelevents, students presented their work from the School’s Capstone Design courses or highlighted concepts and prototypes from the Product Realization and Art of Making courses. 

The students prepared to present their projects in their individual online “booths,” and judges, who are industry professionals from around the world, visited the online spaces in turn to talk with students and view their work. 

“We’re proud and impressed by our students’ ability to adapt to this virtual event and bring their best, most innovative work to the table,” said Mary Besterfield-Sacre, Nickolas A. Dececco Professor, Associate Dean for Academic Affairs, and Director of the Engineering Education Research Center. “This year may have changed the format of this important event, but what hasn’t changed is our students’ talent, skill and perseverance.” 

This year’s winners are: 

Best Overall Project 

MEMS-5: Enhancement of Metal 3D-Printed Respiratory Filter Design
Nathan Knueppel, Frederick Wohlers, Jared Melnik, Andrew Harmon, and Zach Ostrander
Advisors: Marchus Chmielus and David Schmidt

People’s Choice Award

BioE-9: Trauma-Informed Speculum Redesign
Neharika Chodapaneedi, Hannah Geisler, Justin Amritha, Katherine Miller, Oreoluwa Odeniyi, Joseph Sukinik, Joanna Siegel, Sydney Rinderknecht, and Susanne Kushernick
Advisor: Mark Gartner



1st Place: BioE-5, System to Improve Glove Donning
Klaire Dickey, Emily Hilerick, Rachel Lau, Seth Queen, Simon Shenk, Michael Shulock, Christopher Snodgrass, Katherine Stevenson, and Leo Julian
Advisor: Mark Gartner

2nd Place: BioE-11, Expressive Aphasia Patient Communication in a Hospital Setting Following Stroke
Rosh Bharti, Audrey Case, Harris Chishti, Mitchell Dubaniewicz, Jessica Weber and Benjamin Wong
Advisor: Mark Gartner

3rd Place: BioE-4, Addressing Self-Harm in Patients with ASD
David Chan, Mateus Pinho, Yannis Rigas, Gloriani Sanchez, Sean Tighe, and Shivani Tuli
Advisor: Mark Gartner

Civil and Environmental Engineering

1st Place: CEE-9, Fly Ranch Water Treatment Facility
Dana Vidic, Claire Sattler, Maria Stopenski, and Trent Greener
Advisor: John Sebastian

2nd Place: CEE-7, Landslide Slope Stabilization
Dustin Chickis, Perry Hoover Jr., Col McLaughlin, and Jack Decker
Advisor: John Sebastian

3rd Place: CEE-1, SBTRA Small Bridge and Spillway Replacement
Katherine Paraskiewicz, Patrick Schorr, Anthony Bove, and Ivan Menz
Advisor: John Sebastian

Electrical and Computer Engineering

1st Place: ECE-5, Bidirectional Foot Traffic Monitor for Single Entry Spaces
Alyssa Jordan, Richard Kuerzi, Daniel Mingey, and Calvin Yu
Advisors: Mohamed Bayoumy and Steve Jacobs

2nd Place: ECE-1, Two-Channel Oscilloscope/Spectrum Analyzer
Erin Welling, Justin Long, Dillon Garrett, and Jacob Heilman
Advisors: Mohamed Bayoumy and Steve Jacobs

Industrial Engineering

1st Place: IE-1, Supply Chain Risk Management
Alexandra Lee, Elizabeth Lee, Michael Urzillo, and Mara Wrzesniew
Advisors: MECCO, Catalyst Connection, and Michael Sherwin

2nd Place: IE-8, Flu Season Modeling
Claude Corbett, Venice Pascual, Nathan Sugrue and Sofia Vidic
Advisors: Hyo Kyung Lee, Caroline Kolman, Michael Sherwin, and Insightin Health

Mechanical Engineering and Material Science 

1st Place: MEMS-5, Enhancement of Metal 3D-Printed Respiratory Filter Design
Nathan Knueppel, Frederick Wohlers, Jared Melnik, Andrew Harman, and Zach Ostrander
Advisors: Marcus Chmielus and David Schmidt

2nd Place: MEMS-15, Integrating Sports into STEM Education for 6th-12th Grade Black Students: Basketball Sleeve
Dan Quiroga, Gaby Moore and Terrell Galloway
Advisor: David Schmidt

3rd Place: MEMS-11, Development of a Robotic Work Cell for Automated Handling of Small Parts
Benjamin Koo, Andrea Davis, Samuel Taylor and Gabriel Detter
Advisors: Aerotech, Stephen Ludwick, and David Schmidt

Product Realization

1st Place: PR-5, Kensington Medallion Refinement
Adam Grachen, Emily Hearty, Ben Somerville, and William Zheng
Advisors: Rick Winter and Marc Weber Tobias

2nd Place: PR-6, Level-Lock Reverse Engineering
Robert Brown, Jonathan Perlman, Cynthia Rosensteel, and Michael Lin
Advisors: Rick Winter and Marc Weber Tobias

Art of Making

1st Place: AOM-2 Link Pad: Connecting Your Loved Ones with You
David Herr, Spencer Zacher, Benjamin Somerville, and Elizabeth Sidelnikov
Advisor: Joseph Samosky

2nd Place: AOM-1 Slide Guide: A Manual Wheelchair Seat Transfer Device
Celia Davis, Noah Ziemba, Katelyn Spadavecchia, Michael Kugler and Ashley Zagari
Advisor: Joseph Samosky

Author: Maggie Pavlick

Contact: Maggie Pavlick