Author Archives: dalemasel

About dalemasel

Associate Professor of Industrial and Systems Engineering at Ohio University

Sightseeing at Halloween

Wilson  Taylor

Wilson Taylor,
Junior, Computer Science

Athens, OH 27 October 2014 -

This past weekend was Halloween in Athens. Prior to coming to Ohio University I had heard a lot about the event–both positive and negative. Being a junior, this was my third time experiencing the event. Quickly looking back, I can confidently say all three of my Halloween experiences have been positive.

In my first year, I was hesitant about heading uptown for Halloween. After being guilt-tripped by both my RA and roommate at the time, I ended up walking the stretch of the event, Court Street, with them. Once there, I immediately realized I had made the right decision–the atmosphere was simply amazing.

Now I don’t think twice about heading uptown. For me, Halloween is walking Court Street with a small group of friends while eating funnel cake, corn dogs, and being fascinated by all the costumes.

Each year I try to pick a favorite costume I’ve seen. This usually leads to conflict amongst friends, but I like to think I make the best choices. For my first Halloween, my favorite costume was a group of jellyfish. About fourteen people had on robes with bubble umbrellas. The umbrellas had streamers hanging down from the sides while flashing Christmas lights were on the insides. The group bounced up and down the street–-it was truly a sight to be seen!

Last year my favorite costume was a Toy Story army figure. The man who was dressed up as a soldier had his costume painted a uniform shade of dark jungle green. He lay down on the street perfectly motionless until a crowd had gathered; he would then leap two to three feet forward. He did such a great job I found myself questioning if it was even a costume.

This year, my favorite costume was a group dressed up as the Hogwarts castle from Harry Potter. My fascination with the scene was not only the detail put into the costumes but also the memories the scene brought back. I found myself remembering the wonderful times I had reading the Harry Potter series with my Dad in middle school.

Overall, Halloween in Athens is an amazing experience. If you approach the weekend with a positive attitude, a fun group of friends and respect for the community you’ll gain some awesome memories from the whole shebang every year!

SWE Conference 2014

Natasha Norris

Natasha Norris,
Junior, Electrical Engineering

Athens, OH 26 October 2014

October 22nd through 25th, Ohio University Society of Women Engineers traveled to Los Angeles for our annual national conference.

We left around 3 a.m. Wednesday to catch our 7 a.m. flight from Columbus.

OU SWE at Columbus Airport

After we arrived in Los Angeles, we spent a portion of the day on Santa Monica Beach. We carried our luggage around the beach and caught received many stares.

OU SWE at Santa Monica Beach

Then we traveled to Pasadena. We were all exhausted by the end of the day…

Exhausted

By the second day, we were fresh and awake for our conference. The Society of Women Engineers annual national conference offers the largest career fair for engineers available in the United States. We spent the day at seminars prepping for the career fair on Friday. The seminars ranged from helping young girls learn about engineering to how to start a job in a new work place. At the conference, I was able to make connections with many other SWE chapters such as Ohio State and Cincinnati.

SWE Conference 2014

On Friday, we were ready to win over an interview at the career fair. OU SWE members interviewed with Northrop Grumman, Rockwell Automation, Turner Construction, Toyota, GM, Eaton, 3M and Halliburton to name a few. Some of us were even able to land an internship on the spot. I received internship offers from Northrop Grumman and Booz Allen Hamilton.

Friday night left some sightseeing time. We all traveled to the Hollywood Walk of Fame and had our group dinner at a nearby pub.

OU SWE at Hollywood Walk of Fame

Saturday morning we left Los Angeles with our souvenirs and exhaustion, but great memories we shared with our OU SWE members. But, let me leave you with an unknown fact in Ohio that only Californians know…

Water in a Box

Enjoying a Fall Getaway

Jordan Sapp

Jordan Sapp,
Junior, Civil Engineering

Athens, OH 20 October 2014

A question I wrestled with when choosing to major in engineering was “If I study engineering, will I have a life outside of homework and exams?” After spending two-and-a-half years in Civil Engineering, I can confidently answer that question with, “Yes it is possible to have a life outside of engineering work.”

This past weekend was a clear example of leaving the real world of work and just enjoying life. Saturday I went to the Circleville Pumpkin show with a group of friends. The pumpkin show is an annual gathering of pumpkin fanatics in a festival-like atmosphere about an hour from Athens. There are rides, food, games, and tons of pumpkin goodness. That includes the World’s Largest Pumpkin Pie, 6 feet in diameter.

World's Largest Pumpkin Pie

Anything you can think of, they’ve made it pumpkin-flavored and I had the opportunity to taste some of it! After sampling through pumpkin chili, elephant ears, coffee, pie, funnel cake, ice cream, and fudge I decided my favorite pumpkin-flavored food was the pumpkin donut from a local bakery named Lindsey’s. The donuts were one-of-a-kind and truly satisfied my taste buds.

After the pumpkin show we camped out at the house of one of my friends. this camping out involved marshmallows, hot dogs, guitar playing, and an overall good time. To top off the night, we all slept in hammocks.

Hammock Camping

After weekends like these, I appreciate the ability to have some free time to get away from engineering and just enjoy the opportunities going to school in this area offers

Finally It’s Fall!

Eric May

Eric May,
Senior, Industrial & Systems Engineering

Athens, OH 19 October 2014

My favorite season of the year seems to finally be here. Fall at Ohio University is a pretty special time. Not only are classes well underway, but also so is college football season.

The last couple of weekends I’ve been able to take a break from my coursework to enjoy some of my favorite fall activities. Last weekend I was able to participate in the Russ College of Engineering and Technology homecoming tailgate. It was a great opportunity to talk with engineering alumni and really get excited for the game. It also doesn’t hurt that students get into the home games for free.

Aside from the beautiful scenery in Southeast Ohio, fall also brings about my favorite holiday of the year: Halloween! Ohio University students really get in the spirit, and every year we have a great celebration with some really unique costumes. Last year I went as Han Solo from Star Wars and met some very interesting people.

I also enjoy carving pumpkins, so this weekend I went to a nearby pumpkin patch with a friend to pick a pumpkin.

Engineer in a Pumpkin Patch

We found an amazing place not too far from Athens, and I think this year I’m going to have an Ohio University or engineering themed carving. I’ve come to find that there are a lot of great places to visit off campus, and as I head into my last year of college I’m really coming to appreciate not just the university, but also what the surrounding area has to offer.

Learning from a Great Advisor

Claire Hall

Claire Hall,
Senior, Chemical & Biomolecular Engineering

Athens, OH 2 October 2014

As an incoming freshman, you are paired with a faculty member in your department. It will be your advisor’s duty to help guide you through the process of choosing classes and schedules throughout your time at OU. Sometimes your advisor is the first professor you meet outside a classroom with. You’ll meet your advisor at least one time a semester to go over scheduling classes.

This professor is a huge part of your experience! They become a mentor and are a very important contact to have. If you have questions about changing major, adding minors, adding certificates, adding specific tracks, switching classes, or dropping classes they’re the person to talk to.

My own advisor, Dr. Monica Burdick, has helped me with much more than my classes throughout my four years at OU. Starting my sophomore year, I had the opportunity to work under Dr. Burdick in the Chemical and Biomolecular Engineering Department helping with biomedical research experiments. I had a chance to learn about the different options other than classical chemical engineering that you could pursue with my degree.

I was intrigued and thoroughly enjoyed the lab and Dr. Burdick’s research. She and her graduate students have helped shape me as an engineer throughout the past couple of years and have also made a huge impact on what I’ve chosen to pursue.

Advisors can be an intimidating first step when coming to OU but these professors are here to help you find out your goals and achieve them! They help and mentor you in many ways throughout the years.

Taking Advantage of Opportunities for Self-Betterment

Casey Davis

Casey Davis,
Senior, Industrial & Systems Engineering

Athens, OH 2 October 2014

I was born the youngest child with a brother that always outweighed me by over 80 lbs. As a freshman in high school, I weighed a mere 120 pounds. I figured it was time to do something about it, considering I had been “skinny as a bean pole” if you will, my whole life.

I started with some friends going to work out and lift a few times a week. With an ectomorph body type, adding weight would be nearly impossible without eating everything in sight, in addition to weight training. So, in an effort to actually be effective, that is exactly what I did. I ate everything, and anything high in protein and, well, actually anything. I can say from personal experience there is no better feeling than feeling your body getting stronger. And, of course, seeing your muscles grow is always a plus.

By the time I entered Ohio University I had gained 50 pounds of muscle and had been satisfied with my accomplishments. However, I was not done trying to improve myself–as anyone who lifts can tell you, it can be addicting (in a good way).

With Ohio University having a multi-floor weight room, it was perfect for me to have the space and equipment to allow me to reach peak physical condition. With rooms for different classes such as yoga, jazzercise, and MMA club there are many opportunities for people with all different types of interests to find something that they would enjoy.

There is brand new equipment for the 2014-2015 year including a revamped room with a Crossfit space. It has many squat racks and bars for all the Olympic lifts that you would perform in a Crossfit environment (that I thoroughly enjoy). I also enjoy playing pickup basketball, which occurs during many of the operating hours every single day. With about 4-1/2 full courts, there is usually never a wait for more than 1 game.

There are so many athletic facilities available for students at Ohio University that allow them to improve their health, relieve stress from class, and bond with other students. The ones mentioned above are just a small sample size. There are many other facilities including the Aquatic Center, the golf course, tennis courts, Frisbee golf course, a bike/running path that goes around the entire outer campus, and even Bird Arena, our hockey rink.

The moral of the story is that there is an abundance of fun, self-improving facilities/activities that are available to all students. I have gained ten more pounds of muscle during my time here, achieving my weight goal of 180 pounds. I hope that many others that read this know the great quality of athletic facilities there are here at our school.

My “Brand-New” 1970 GMC K2500

Steve Toth

Steve Toth,
Junior, Engineering Technology & Management

Athens, OH 30 September 2014

Besides being a college student, one of my hobbies includes restoring antique farm equipment and trucks. This past summer, although I was very busy with my full-time internship, I found time to bring a 1970 GMC K2500 pickup back to life. (I didn’t sleep.) It is 1 of about 6000 made and 1 of few that have survived 44 years of abuse.

1970 GMC K2500

My treasure came from Sisseton, South Dakota, complete with the original dealership decal and 80,000 miles. After contacting the original owner I discovered that it had spent its life as a ranch truck, hauling hogs to market and daughters to school.

After spending countless hours in the shop, all rust was repaired (while maintaining most of the original paint), a completely new suspension and steering system was installed, the complete brake system was upgraded and countless other repairs and upgrades were performed.

1970 GMC K2500

Although the truck has been a large investment of both time and money, it has also been a great source of pride and satisfaction for this engineer-in-training. It seems as though I cannot drive it anywhere without getting a smile on my face or attracting the attention of passers-by.