To graduate, UEG needs to complete a capstone project – to design, build, and test a working prototype for an industry client. We have a plan and we’re nearly finished with a design, but now we need to buy parts for our prototype!
We are a diverse group of native Texans, born in San Antonio, La Joya, and Lake Dallas. One of us is an older non-traditional student studying for a career change, and one of us will be the first in his family to earn a college degree.
Your support will mean a lot to us, because it will allow us to complete our capstone project and graduate, where we hope to make a difference in our local communities as professional engineers.
TEAM MEMBER MIGUEL TORRES
My name is Miguel Torres and I am from La Joya a small city in the Rio Grande Valley. I was raised by my mom and dad and have a younger brother who also attends UTSA.
My goals are to have a successful senior year and complete a capstone project that helps UTSA’s Mechanical Engineering program stand out to other schools. After graduating, I hope to become a Professional Engineer (PE) and to be a respected leader in the company that I get employed by.
As a first-generation college student my education is a result of the hard work that my parents have done. My parents came from Mexico to the United States in hopes of a better future for them and their future children. My father works in the oil field and spends most of his time away from home and in harsh environment in the sun. While growing up, my father would lecture me about getting a job where I don’t spend time in the sun like he does because that is the opportunity that I had because I was born in this country and was going to receive an education. I chose to pursue becoming a mechanical engineer and my education will be thanks to the sacrifices my parents have made.
TEAM MEMBER SCOTT HESKEW
I was born in San Antonio, have lived in three countries, and just celebrated my 10th wedding anniversary. I’m 40 years old, proving the proverb that it’s never too late to chart a new course in life.
After completing my bachelor’s degree I hope to complete a graduate degree and join an engineering research firm in Austin or San Antonio. My wife and I would also like to expand our family once we are more stable financially.
As a married student who attends college full-time, paying for college is a financial challenge. Between our savings and my wife’s earnings, we make ends meet, but at times it’s a struggle. Her support has been the only thing that makes my college dream possible.
TEAM MEMBER DILLION JOHNSON
My name is Dillion Johnson and I am from Lake Dallas, Texas. I grew up with my father, mother, and little sister. In my spare time I like to work out, dance (two-step), and watch NBA basketball.
Professionally I want to enter the workforce and have a leadership role at the company where I work. My ultimate goal is to become the best leader that I can be and be a role model for other young individuals like myself.
As a child I was very sickly. I was allergic to an abundance of foods, trees, grass, animals, and mold and had to go receive medical shots from the doctor weekly. Sometimes I had to use a nebulizer once every couple of nights. My family didn’t have much money and the medical expenses were a struggle. Through lots of prayer and patience my health is now 100% better than it was when I was a child. I feel very blessed to be healthy enough to pursue all my goals in life.
ABOUT OUR PROJECT
We are working with a client, PW Power Systems, to develop a prototype nondestructive evaluation (NDE) system to automatically perform quality checks on turbine blades that will be used in gas power stations around the country. Our design will replace a manual process with a faster and more reliable mechanical system that will help ensure the turbines operate safely and efficiently, bringing power to communities around the country.
We’ve worked hard to recruit industry professionals to advise our project, including experts with the UTSA engineering department, PW Power Systems, Southwest Research Institute, Light NDE Consulting, and Sierra Nevada – our advisors have more than 200 years of engineering experience between them. All we need now is parts to build our prototype!
WHERE WILL THE MONEY GO?
Our client is providing us with some old/unused equipment to seed the project, and we can use our university’s machine shop to make and measure parts, but we still need to buy most of our parts! Our machine will need:
· An ultrasound sensor
· Servomotors and encoders
· Aluminum and steel stock for making frames, rods, clasps, and other parts
· Printing costs for several hundred pages of written reports and two presentation posters
· Software licenses for project management and software development tools
· Computer parts, circuit boards, and electrical components for control systems
· Various off-the-shelf parts to complete the system
Your support is essential to our success, both in completing college and starting our future lives. Without the funding to buy these parts, we literally cannot graduate, so we are hoping that GoFundMe will be an essential part of our success with the capstone senior project.
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