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Engineering Students Win Second Place in National ASME Contest
January 29, 2004


MACON, GA- A  team of six Mercer University School of Engineering graduates recently placed second in American Society of Mechanical Engineers, Fluids Engineering Division, Senior Design Report Contest. The national award was presented at the International Mechanical Engineering Conference in Washington D.C.

Dennis Adams of Macon, Stormie Chenoweth of Warner Robins, Cynthia Dickman of Dublin, Josh Hilderbrand of Hamilton, Scott Silence of Lutz, Fla., and Chelsea Smith of Mableton were recognized for their senior design project from spring 2003 in which they designed and built an apparatus to help NASA scientists test heat transfer in space.

NASA scientists are now using the student team's apparatus in their labs.
Dr. Loren Sumner, an assistant professor of mechanical and industrial engineering at Mercer, served as a technical adviser for the students as they worked on the project.

"These undergraduate students used their engineering knowledge and abilities gained at Mercer to solve a complex design problem under severe time constraints and provided NASA with a useful apparatus," Sumner said.

Hilderbrand, who is now pursuing a master's degree in engineering at Rensselaer University in Troy, N.Y., said he enjoyed the complexity of the senior design project.

"It was a good challenge, and everything turned out well," he said.

Chenoweth, who is now working as a senior staff engineer for ARINC Engineering Services, LLC in Warner Robins, agreed.

"I enjoyed the challenge of a difficult project," she said. "I also feel like we made the most of an opportunity to make a real contribution to engineering and science."

The student winners graduated from Mercer in 2003 and studied a cross-section of engineering disciplines. Adams and Hilderbrand earned bachelor in engineering degrees with specializations in mechanical engineering. Chenoweth, Dickman and Smith earned bachelor in engineering degrees with specializations in electrical engineering. And Silence graduated from Mercer with a bachelor in engineering degree specializing in computer engineering.

Named one of the top engineering schools in the Southeast by U.S. News and World Report for the past five years, Mercer University School of Engineering is known for producing graduates ready to work in the industry and government. The innovative Mercer School of Engineering curriculum emphasizes teamwork as well as opportunities to gain hands-on experiences. Mercer engineering graduates are known for their strong communication skills, as Mercer is one of few engineering institutions in the nation to house a Technical Communication Department within the Engineering School.