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Impact - Fall 2005

More ambassadors join Engineering Road Show

A group of alumni, trained as presenters for the “Engineering Road Show,” are eager to share their experiences with high school students in an effort to increase their interest in engineering. Looking forward to his first presentation in January 2006 at Lincoln High School in Warren, Christopher Koziara ’03, who works in DaimlerChrysler’s hybrid electric vehicle program, says, “We as experienced engineers must share our knowledge with young students. Some of the greatest inventions in mankind’s history were made by engineers. Having the chance to join the ranks of great men and women of innovation should be a very exciting opportunity.”

Phil Kimmel ’04, a CIE engineer with DaimlerChrysler Product Strategy, is working towards his master's in Mechanical Engineering at UDM. “My involvement is two-fold: I would like to see UDM’s program grow. I also would like to see DaimlerChrysler improve because of the quality engineers we graduate. I truly believe in the whole education that UDM gives its students and the way in which UDM prepares people for life, not just work.”

Sean Newell ’92, ’93, is scheduled to present at Allen Park and Southgate Anderson High Schools, both in proximity to his job as an electrical systems manager in Ford Motor Company Product Development. “As presenters we want to share what’s fun and exciting in engineering so students get a real understanding that it’s not all math and geeky tech,” says Newell.

Regarding employment potential, he shared comments from a recent Ford executive’s speech that even in “down times,” the automotive industry has the need for new skills and innovations that talented young engineers can bring to areas including hybrids, telematics (in-vehicle communications) and computer systems.

Paul Shefferly ’75, director of DaimlerChrysler’s Vehicle Build in Product Development, will present at Detroit Catholic Central of Novi and Milford High School this fall. Discussing why the nation needs engineers, he says, “As an ongoing leader in technological innovations, the U.S will have more ability to influence how things will play out in the future, to incorporate our values for society and the environment. We need to create jobs and solutions that represent our perspective and that are appropriate for us.”

Other alumni who have volunteered to present include Frank Trovato '92, '95 of DaimlerChrysler, Steve Hamlin '94 of Tre Builders, LLC, Matt Smith '94, Jeff Vogel '91, and Mike Pilon '94.

Since the “Road Show” began in 2004, E&S Dean Leo Hanifin, faculty and others have talked to several thousand students in schools throughout the metropolitan Detroit region and Ohio. They share information about the scope of available careers and the rewards of being an engineer, and demonstrate a mobile robot designed and built by UDM students.

Citing that Asian universities graduate more than 10 times as many engineers as North American universities, Hanifin adds, “Without an adequate supply of engineers, we will not be competitive in the global economy nor will we be secure in a very dangerous world.”