Do Design Throughout Your Undergrad Years

The Engineering Design Program is one big reason recruiters are looking to hire UA Engineering students and graduates.

All undergraduates take design courses and complete design projects that parallel real life – from portable solar ovens and water purifiers early on to date palm pollinating drones and data center robotics as seniors.

Most students take the yearlong ENGR 498 design course and participate in the UA Engineering Design Program, which culminates in Design Day.

Design Day >


Sponsor a Design Project!

  • Talented and motivated engineering seniors spend the academic year working on your prototypes, to your specifications, and with the results becoming your intellectual property.
    • Explore new technologies
    • Move products and ideas to market
    • Test-drive future employees
    • Boost your company’s profile
  • Many of our industry partners also mentor senior design teams, serve as judges, and award prizes on Design Day.
  • For more information, please visit the UA Engineering Design Program website, email Ara Arabyan or Dan Klingberg, or call 520.621.3364.

2019 Design Day | April 29

Engineering Design Day

Design Day 2019


Lightning Legs


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Paving the Road to the World of Work

For design teams, supervised and mentored by engineering professionals, the Engineering Design Program is a chance to experience the work world and make job connections. For industry partners, it’s an opportunity to get to know and work with talented students.

senior design day
Finishing Strong with Grasshopper Harvester
When Wildcat athlete Hannah Whetzel isn’t running, she’s interning at Raytheon, in the lab studying mechanical engineering, or, for her 2019 capstone project, designing a grasshopper harvester to rid crops of pests. “It is really cool to see how engineering applies to real life.”
senior design day
Moving Ahead on Robotic Weeding
Mark Siemens, associate professor of agricultural and biosystems engineering, has tasked a 2019 design team with building a robotic weeding machine for lettuce crops. “I haven’t been able to crack the puzzle, so part of my motivation was to get some fresh thoughts.”
senior design day
Digging Deep for Caterpillar
A 2018 design team, sponsored by Caterpillar, designed and built a small-scale prototype for a surface mining machine to replace electric rope shovels and hydraulic rope shovels. “This experience will help me get a job and perform it well,” said team member Dylan Guenther.
senior design day
Going on the Offense for Defense
Matthias Whitney is a principal electro-optics engineer at Elbit, a defense electronics company. The 2019 senior design project sponsor says he’s finding what he needs at the UA. “If we wish to remain competitive, we need to continually be attracting new talent.”
senior design day
Rethinking Ankle Replacement
“This could open doorways to rethink the way we do orthopedic surgery,” said Daniel Medrano. His 2018 design team designed a system that uses a non-invasive laser beam shining from ankle to hip to accurately align the two body parts during ankle replacement surgery.
senior design day
Scoping Out Honeywell Talent
Phoenix-based Honeywell Aerospace has been supporting projects and scoping out talent in the UA’s Engineering Design Program for more than a decade. “Some really good engineers come out of the program,” said company engineer Alex Mirzamoghadam.
senior design day
Empowering Electricity Customers
“People can determine what they can do to save money without changing their energy use,” said Dylan Carlson, whose 2018 design team, sponsored by TEP, created a device to measure power usage, calculate cost, and display the information.
senior design day
Making a Lifesaver Even Better
Hydronalix sponsored teams to refine EMILY, a robotic rescue buoy. One project was a canister to automate deployment, the other a sonar addition for underwater search and rescue. “They’ll become excellent engineers,” said CEO Tony Mulligan of UA students.
senior design day
Pollinating Date Palms via Drone
Students created a more efficient, semi-autonomous pollination drone for date palms at the Gowan Company in Yuma, Arizona. They won the top 2017 Design Day prize. A UA entrepreneurial program is carrying on the project, and a patent is on the horizon.
senior design day
Anticipating Patent for Medical Sensor
Xeridiem sponsored development of a sensor to reduce medical errors in nasogastric feeding tube placement. “We could not be more delighted with the outcome,” said Paul Melnychuck, senior director of business development, marketing and innovation.
senior design day
Helping a Classmate Walk Again
Within two weeks of using a student-designed exoskeleton, an accounting undergrad could stand up and maintain his balance after years in a wheelchair. Hermelinda Bristol is pursuing a patent for the device with the hopes it will help more people like her son.
senior design day
Working on Pocket-Size Defibrillator
“We want to make the first small, affordable and personal defibrillator that people can put in their pockets and easily carry with them,” said cardiologist Dr. Carter Newton, founder of CardioSpark, which sponsored a team to create the prototype.
2019 Fast Facts

Design Day: Where It All Comes Together

Multidisciplinary teams of four to six seniors amaze the crowds in late April or early May with the results of their yearlong, sponsored team projects. Design Day often leads to cash prizes, patents and commercialized products, and job offers.

Read all about Design Day 2019 – the projects, the winners, the prizes – on the college’s news site!

Design Day 2019Check out the 2019 Design Day Booklet.

signs Visit the Engineering Design Program website for more information.

Winning Proposition

Laura Barajas


MSE Senior

“It definitely helped us prepare for the workforce. The whole process of senior design is like a little mirror of industry.”

Laura Barajas, 2018 materials science and engineering senior
Cliff Andressen

Cliff Andressen

prize sponsor

“They’re teaching them to think, not just to turn the crank. I was just awed by the quality of work UA students are doing.”

Cliff Andressen, Design Above and Beyond prize sponsor
Sharon ONeal



“They are not afraid to take on and develop complex design solutions and diligently work through the many challenges.”

Sharon ONeal, program mentor & first female senior fellow at Raytheon Missile Systems
Scott Rowland

Scott Rowland

industry mentor

“It really speaks well of the market and the program here that all these students are finding jobs.”

Scott Rowland, industry mentor & Northrop Grumman mechanical engineering manager