Essential to industrial enterprise, mechanical engineering is versatile and continuously evolving. Mechanical engineers use their knowledge of design, energy and materials to ensure that objects function more efficiently to conserve resources.
FLAME Project introduces girls to mechanical engineering
Thirty-nine high school girls from five area schools spent a Saturday at MSOE learning more about the field of mechanical engineering as part of the third annual FLAME event.
The FLAME Project (Female Leaders Advocating for Mechanical Engineering) at MSOE begin in 2017 to engage young female students in on-campus activities that expose them to the field and encourage them to pursue an education in mechanical engineering. Students in MSOE’s Society of Women Engineers and ASME Chapter led the event.
“FLAME benefits each student differently,” said Samantha Hoover, sophomore mechanical engineering major and president of ASME. Hoover participated in FLAME as a high school senior and this year helped plan the event for others. “For me, attending FLAME solidified that mechanical engineering was what I wanted to do with my life. For other students, FLAME is an exploration.”
Girls toured MSOE’s laboratories and heard from faculty and students about the different career opportunities that are available to mechanical engineers. They also had the opportunity to put their own skills to the test in a team-based engineering challenge. Students built a pneumatic arm out of Legos and hoses that was tasked with moving sponges from a board into an egg carton. Dr. Daniel Williams, an associate professor in the Mechanical Engineering Department, devised the design challenge.
“The main focus of the event is to inspire girls to consider joining the field of mechanical engineering,” Hoover said. “But it’s also an introduction to MSOE and the Mechanical Engineering Department here.”
FLAME is one of many outreach opportunities ASME and SWE organize throughout the year.