Preparing students for the workforce is one of the most important priorities in the education sector. The needs of industry are constantly changing and educators strive to find the best way to meet these needs. Providing a culminating experience in classroom settings is one strategy that allows students to apply the knowledge that they gained throughout their undergraduate coursework. This paper explains these efforts to develop a high-impact senior capstone course for Engineering Technology related majors. This research aims to explain a proven strategy for teaching this course after its two-year pilot phase. The course was created to address concerns of industry. The creation of an industrial environment in the classroom helps prepare students for the real world of work. This research is based on a course titled " Emphasis Related Capstone " (ERC), which is offered at Bemidji State University. The ERC course centers on product design and development and is used to prepare students for future careers. Steps for designing the capstone course are shared in this paper. Multidisciplinary teams (e.g. electrical manufacturing, design, project management) were formed to achieve deliverable outcomes. Examples of manufacturing projects conducted in the capstone course are also provided and instructors' responsibilities for teaching capstone courses summarized. In addition, a grading strategy for such capstone courses is provided.
Improving supply chain (SC) operations is one of the goals that all organizations strive to achieve. Enhancing Supply Chain Management (SCM) will help organizations improve efficiency, generate more profit, and reduce business expenses. High value customers and suppliers can be added or retained by maintaining a reliable SCM information system. Using SCM information systems is considered as best practices in the management field. The more reliable and efficient SC, the more profits a company can generate and the easier to compete globally. This research aims to explore Northern Minnesota enterprises strategies, practices, and information systems technologies that are used for managing their supply chains. An online survey is used to collect information on three questions: What are the major challenges with the use of information systems for SCM in Northern Minnesota? What is the level of satisfaction of current strategies and practices that are used in SCM? What are the actual needs for the effective use of SCM information systems? The reliability of the survey has been insured by conducting a polite study of the survey by three companies. SPSS program is used to analyze the collected data. Descriptive analysis is used to present and explain the results. This research may help managers to determine the needs to improve their supply chains. This research can be used as a benchmark and can be implemented in other areas.
A photovoltaic (PV) two-axis tracking system has been installed on the Technology Center building at Indiana State University located in Terre Haute, Indiana, USA. The PV system supports emergency lighting of the building and provides an opportunity to the students to learn about green energy and its functioning. The present work aims to investigate the economic viability of the PV system. The study takes into account the available solar potential of the city of Terre Haute. Cash flow, discounted payback period, internal rate of return, and net present value analyses have been used to assess the economic feasibility of the system. It has been determined that the system is not economically justified. However, it is useful for the academic purposes.
The creation of an industrial environment in the classroom helps students to prepare for the real world of work. Manufacturing students must be prepared to apply lean manufacturing (LM) concepts in an industrial environment. Value stream mapping (VSM) is one tool that can be used to implement the LM technique. The aim of this current study was to apply VSM in the Simulated Industrial Manufacturing Company (SIMCO) class at Indiana State University. At SIMCO, mass production techniques were used to manufacture products such as diploma frames. There was, then, a need to use LM techniques to minimize waste and maximize the flow. It is known that VSM is well able to identify opportunities for enhancing value, eliminating waste, and improving flow. In this study, the authors followed four steps to implement VSM: 1) identify the product; 2) create a current state value stream map; 3) create a future-state value stream map; and, 4) create an action plan. Takt time, process cycle time, and process cycle efficiency (PCE) were computed for prior-and post-states for comparison. Although PCE did not improve, takt time, cycle time, budget, and the number of required employees were all significantly reduced.