College of Science & Engineering

Plastics & Composites Engineering

Plastics & Composites Industry Sponsored Research 

Similar to the Manufacturing program, students within the Plastics & Composites program are responsible for completing a senior project upon graduation. Students are presented with numerous projects to choose from (that vary depending on the projects offered by industry).  The majority of the PCE projects are: process design, process investigation, product design, machine design, software applications, material investigation, or tool design.  Each project has a specific problem that needs to be solved and must contain a significant design component.  Students will then define the problem, develop specifications, investigate and present multiple solutions, select the best solution and develop an implementation plan including timeline and budget. During this time, all projects start in the Fall and are implemented in the Spring. 

Benefits to sponsors:

Opportunity to leverage in house engineering talent to solve a given design problem
Potential for new innovative and creative concepts and ideas to solve real problems unencumbered by company tradition or status quo
Multi-person engineering design team and talent at a minimum cost
Interdisciplinary options with other Engineering & Design students
Opportunity to evaluate design team member(s) as potential future employees and assess their abilities and relative fit for your company

Benefits to students:

Real world application of their academic studies
The opportunity to work in the industries of personal interest
Opportunity to cite specific design accomplishments as part of a portfolio and resume
Professional and technical feedback on their ideas
Firsthand real world exposure to business practices and communications

Benefits to the Engineering & Design Department:

Exposure to industry ensures the Plastics & Composites program stays relevant to current workforce needs
Project sponsorship ensure labs and curriculum stay current and relevant to industry needs

How do I get involved? 

Complete this form: PDF icon PCE Senior Project Proposal .pdf


Nicole Hoekstra  Email
Plastics & Composites Engineering Professor