Capstone Design

Industrial Engineering 441 Capstone Design is a one-semester senior design course in which students engage in industry projects and practice industrial engineering under the guidance of an experienced Registered Professional Engineer, as well as engineers and managers from a sponsor company. The objective of these projects is to provide economic value to the company and a practical education to the students.

student group photo at construction site

Project Description

Each project has four stages of design:

  1. Problem Definition
  2. Current State Analysis
  3. Future State Collaborative Design
  4. Final Project Validation/Delivery

Students perform in-depth quantitative analysis and design throughout the entire project. This includes extensive on-site and web/phone company involvement to ensure success. As a group, students are required to devote 60 hours per week for 14 weeks to the project.

We look for projects with an economic impact potential of over $100,000. Projects can be in workplace design, 5S/VSM and LEAN, time estimation and process engineering, factory layout, scheduling, inventory analysis, product/process quality analysis, process simulation, ergonomics, data mining and statistical analysis, manufacturability analysis, economic modeling, VB.NET/VBA/SQL programming and industrial automation CNC/RFID/BarCode/PLC Prog/Transducer selection.

Project Impacts

In Spring 2023, 16 projects were performed at 16 different companies. These companies were asked to provide their personal realistic estimate of the economic value of their student projects. The project values ranged from $25,000 to over $1.5 million with an average value of $526,000. Three projects exceeded $1 million in financial impact. Since these projects cost $5,000 per company, the average returns are substantial. Companies agreed to implement between 50% and 100% of student recommendations with an average implementation rate of 89%. Over 85% of our students have industry experience, and 25% have international experience, prior to working in Capstone. These engineers are mature, experienced and motivated, and receive extensive oversight.

Project Examples

Mary Greeley Medical Center (MGMC)

This team worked on a project for Mary Greeley Medical Center (MGMC) to fix identified shortcomings in the emergency medical services department. The primary objective was to improve the quality of patient care provided by EMS through an improved logistical structure.