Freshman engineering teams win at Texas Space Grant Consortium design challenge

Three student teams of freshman engineering students from the Engineering Living Learning Community (ELLC) presented Nov. 14 at the Design Challenge Showcase hosted by the Texas Space Grant Consortium (TSGC) and NASA Johnson Space Center.Engineering Living Learning Community group photo

The Design Challenge teams included teams from Rice University, University of Texas at Austin, University of Texas at El Paso and Texas A&M University–Kingsville.

The ELLC teams were the only freshman teams. The ELLC teams participated in a poster presentation and were judged by NASA engineers. The teams were: Team Spearhead (Micheal Bass, Meredith Davis, Luis Jimenez, Stewart Lach, and Miranda Nelson), Team Starbusters (Ivan Cortes, Shannon Judilla, Andrew Marshall, Hannah Ringler, and Matthew Vezendy), and Team ARES (Kristine Chapple, Kenny Chour, Jacob Fitch, Carl Hurd, Travis Yuille).

Teams Spearheads and ARES worked on a Mars habitat project while team Starbusters worked on a project for the International Space Station.

Each team received several recognitions:

Best Mission Patch Designs: Honorable Mention, Texas A&M ARES

Best Team Motto: Texas A&M Spearhead

Best Portrait of a Design Team, Three Faces of a Design Team: Professional, Team, Student - Texas A&M ARES, Spearhead, Starbusters

Best Site Visit, Lower Division Team: Texas A&M Starbusters

Best Concept Generation, Lower Division Team: Texas A&M Starbusters

Best Attention to Reviewers Comments: Texas A&M ARES (Lower Division Undergraduate Team)

Best Paper: Texas A&M Spearhead (Lower Division Team)

Poster/Model Awards: 1st Place,Texas A&M Spearhead; 3rd Place, Texas A&M Starbusters

The three teams are part of a pilot program, ELLC Freshman Engineering Projects. The program was established in Fall 2011 to engage freshman engineering students living at the Mosher Hall dorm community in multidisciplinary team projects. Students receive no credit for their participation in the project.

Each project has an external sponsor and an upper level undergraduate as a mentor. Besides the Texas Space Grant Consortium projects, the program involves two projects with the City of College Station Public Works Department and one project with the Brazos Valley Children’s Museum.

These projects are part of the Space Engineering Institute. For more information please visit The ELLC Freshman Engineering Projects program is run by the Engineering Student Services and Academics Program (ESSAP) office. For more information please contact Magda Lagoudas, ESSAP director, at