Celebrating 100 Years with MSU Texas: Senior Engineering Design

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WICHITA FALLS, Texas (KAUZ) – News Channel 6 is celebrating a century with Midwestern State University with a preview of the year-long senior engineering design program.

Projects are chosen from industry partners, faculty members and some even come from the students themselves. What struck us was the passion behind each and how for some it’s even a family tradition.

“Sometimes they have more problems than they have people to solve them,” said Dr. Marcy Brown Marsden, dean of the McCoy College of Science, Mathematics & Engineering. “Sometimes they’re interested in trying to take, say, something that might be slightly experimental, something that they’re not completely sure will work and it’s good to put with a student on it.”

“I think some of my favorite projects have probably been the ones where they’re using prosthetic hands, or like developing robotic hands or limbs because you see the potential utility and how they could apply it in the future,” Marsden said.

For some families, several generations of students have gone through the program.

“My dad was an engineer, my grandfather was an engineer,” said Robert Speed, senior engineer at MSU Texas. “We all, I think, went to this school at some point. It’s just in the family for me. There are people here, they really like cars. They’ll work really hard on a car or whatever, and they’ll slowly learn over time how a car works in pretty much all scientific light.

Students also have the opportunity to help research and development programs in the Wichita Falls area. A graduate, who now works at the Cypress water plant, helped the town weather the drought.

“It’s interesting to see Wichita Falls at the forefront of things like this,” Marsden said. “I think it’s really exciting because you can tell we’re solving something that’s going to be a problem for other cities maybe 20 years from now and we’ve already figured out how it could work.”

“We’re a small institution and that allows us to really serve students by having faculty and students side-by-side working on something together,” Marsden said. “It is a central element of our mission. The other is just to be an integral part of our community, so when we do an industrial project, it shows our connection to our community to share that responsibility.

Scholarships are available for this program. They are based on financial need, leadership, and GPA.

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