Reflection. . . .



AE 481

The first semester of Thesis was effective in challenging me to really know my building.  By analyzing the areas required to complete the tech reports I was forced to learn about my building and why certain decisions to construct this building were made, as well as consider alternative methods of construction.  Looking at why design decisions were made on my project helped me to be more aware of the high level of coordination required to construct a project through contacting Project Managers of the entire project team to obtain information about various aspects of the design.  This process proved to be frustrating and fruitless at times, but nevertheless shows another aspect of construction which is extremely important for everyone involved, communication.  The deadlines imposed in semester one really helped to drive the efforts and focus my concentration on getting things done in a timely fashion.


AE 482

Semester two of Thesis proved somewhat more difficult at first because the structure of the course was dictated by the decisions and schedule we as the students create for ourselves.  This independent atmosphere required that I impose and hold myself to the deadlines which I created.  I was responsible as the student for the first time to determine what I needed to have done by when to complete the analyses which I selected for my semesters work.  This type of academic structure was completely new to me and very helpful once I got used to it.  Creating my own assignments and determining exactly what I needed to have done by when was ultimately my struggle, and sometimes some of my deadlines required items which I had not planned to address until later in the semester, so this was a learning experience and a very helpful one.  Getting help from faculty proved to be nearly impossible, but I recognize that this was due to my schedule and availability to meet as well.  Brian Ault along with Industry professionals from Sauer Incorporated helped me a great deal with my analyses and the AE faculty that I was able to meet with helped me to identify what I needed to incorporate to have complete and comprehensive work for each of my analyses.  Maintaining contact with those necessary to help me complete my analyses was a great technique to ensure that I had the information I needed when I needed it to complete my assignments.


CPEP Discussion Board Reflection

The Discussion Board proved to be completely useless for me.  I posted questions numerous times, and the only response I ever got was from Professor Parfitt.  I posted on all of the various option boards and sometimes reposted, but ultimately had to look outside the resources I had from class and make calls to industry professionals to obtain the information I was seeking.  I was very disappointed with the discussion boards.  The CPEP site provided very useful information, and looking at past thesis projects was something I constantly would draw from to obtain ideas about how to display and incorporate my research into the writing portions of these assignments.  The CPEP site is very helpful.

OVERALL. . . .

This past year was an excellent experience.  The insight provided by those in the industry and constantly maintaining contact with industry professionals was a great experience.  Finishing the assignments through the course of Thesis created a great sense of accomplishment for me, and the feeling of being done with thesis following my presentation is hard to put into words!  Thesis and the coursework that this curriculum puts all of the AE students through gives us skills and prepares us for careers as professional engineers that have the ability to make an impact in our companies right out of school.