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Engineering. What is it and why it’s cool Emily Dunne & Meghan Wright. What does an engineer look like?. What does an engineer look like?. What is Engineering?.

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    What is it and why it’s cool

    Emily Dunne & Meghan Wright

    what is engineering
    What is Engineering?
    • “Engineers apply the principles of science and mathematics to develop economical solutions to technical problems. Their work is the link between scientific discoveries and the commercial applications that meet societal and consumer needs.”

    - US Department of Labor

    types of engineering
    Types of Engineering



    Beauty products

    Bullet proof vests and armor

    Clothing fabrics – GorTex, Dryfit

    New age materials

    • Manufacturing
    • Product design
    • Cars, boats, robots, furniture,iPads and many other consumer products
    types of engineering 1
    Types of Engineering

    Computer Science


    Anything that uses electricity!

    Electrical circuits


    Electronics – phones, computers, TVs

    • Video games
    • Apps
    • Computer systems
    • Computer modeling
    • Programming robots
    types of engineering 2
    Types of Engineering



    Nuclear power plants

    Clean energy

    Propulsion systems/space applications

    Medical radiation

    • Prosthetics
    • Vaccines
    • Biodegradable materials
    • Treatments for diseases
    • Artificial organs
    types of engineering 3
    Types of Engineering






    City design

    Sustainable design

    • Airplanes
    • Space ships
    • Helicopters
    • Weapon systems
    • Satellites
    brainstorming activity
    Brainstorming Activity
    • You have 3 minutes to come up with as many new inventions as you can
    • Then you have 2 minutes to make groups of 3 and pick your 3 best ideas

    Be prepared to share your ideas!


    Come up with ideas for a new phone app

    why is brainstorming important
    Why is brainstorming important?
    • There are many possible solutions to a single problem
    • Brainstorming makes you keep an open, creative mind
    • Sharing your ideas with others can help inspire new ideas
    • Brainstorming occurs throughout the design process, not just at the beginning
    why be an engineer
    Why be an engineer?
    • You get to be creative and innovative
    • Make a difference in the world
    • Many career options and high demand for engineers
    • Work with new, up and coming technologies
    what do engineers study
    What do engineers study?
    • Math – Calculus, Probability, Differential equations
    • Sciences – Physics, Chemistry, Biology
    • English/Writing
    • Discipline specific classes
      • Structures, aerodynamics, thermodynamics, controls, design and manufacturing, programming
      • Genetics, thermodynamics, organic chemistry, mechanical properties, biomechanics, computational biology
    what should you study
    What should you study?
    • Calculus and AP Calculus recommended
    • Biology, Physics, Chemistry
    • Four years of English (engineers need to be able to communicate their ideas!)
    • Nurture other interests (Languages, arts, music etc.)
    • Extra-curriculars
      • Long-term commitments
      • Contributions to school, local community, global community
    women in engineering
    Women in Engineering
    • Some people think that engineering is for men – WRONG!
    • Engineering is becoming more and more popular among women every year!
    • There’s no reason that women can’t be engineers too
    design challenge
    Design Challenge
    • Design goal: Build a bridge that spans 8.5 inches (the length of a piece of paper) and supports up to 4 quarters with the smallest budget possible
    • Materials: straws, Scotch tape
    • Rules: 1 straw = $1, 1cm of tape = 10 cents Bridge must be 1 inches off the ground Bridge can’t touch the piece of paper Each team gets two tests during design challenge. Raise your hand if you want to test your bridge *Record all materials used and calculate cost at end
    • Teams: groups of 4-6
    • Time: 15 minutes

    Any questions?

    • Do any of the bridges look alike? What are the differences in designs?
    • What was hard?
    • What did your team do well? What worked and what didn’t?
    • How do you think working with others helped or didn’t help?
    • If you were to do this activity again, what would you change?
    big picture
    Big picture
    • What you just did is what engineers do every day
    • Teamwork is a vital part of being an engineer
    • Sometimes plans don’t work out but mistakes can be helpful in the learning and design process
    • Problem solving is a major aspect of engineering
    my research the sports innovation lab @ mit
    My ResearchThe Sports Innovation Lab @ MIT
    • Cycling
    • conducted wind tunnel testing to detail aerodynamic characteristics of racing bikes
    • designed and conducted tests exploring the effects of rear wheel spacing on aerodynamic performance
    • athlete testingCambridge Science Festival
    • built and design interactive exhibits displaying current sports technologies in tennis, swimming, baseball, soccer, and cycling
    • concussions in baseball: how speed affects the impact of the ball on the helmet and dispersal of force
    ultra electronics ocean systems
    Ultra Electronics – Ocean Systems
    • Software engineer/mission designer
    • Utilized AGI software platform to integrate undersea, surface, and air vehicles communication networks
    • AGI STK is like syms for aerospace/military applications
    boeing defense space and security
    Boeing – Defense, Space and Security
    • Product design – involved in redesigning parts that were old or causing problems on the craft
    • Manufacturing Optimization – identified problem areas in build process and identified possible solutions
    • Programming – built programs to filter manufacturing issues to identify problem areas.
    my work
    My Work
    • Machines and Robots!
      • Designed and built a machine to

    navigate a mini carnival course

      • Programmed a robot to follow a

    line on the ground without a remote

    • Electronic tools
      • Analyzed what makes people creative
      • Designed my own electric tool – an

    electric pepper grinder

    my work 1
    My Work
    • Electric Power Plant
    • Design water piping
    • Calculate what new engines to buy
    • Determine which engines to run to be most efficient
    • Research alternative energy options like water power and solar power
    • Test water and oil samples to make sure the engines work properly
    • Make sure the plant is reducing it’s pollution
    • Wear a hard hat and overalls!
    • MIT Women’s Technology Program (WTP):
    • Boston University's Program in Mathematics for Young Scientists (PROMYS):
    • Cornell University's Summer College for High School Students:
    • MIT Minority Introduction to Engineering, Entrepreneurship, and Science:
    • MIT Educational Outreach Programs:
    • Research Science Institute at MIT (RSI):
    • Phillips Academy Summer Session:
    • Smith College Summer Science Program
    • Syracuse University Summer College for High School Students:
    contact us
    Contact Us!
    • Meghan Wright:
    • Emily Dunne:
    • Feel free to email us! We’d love to hear from you!