CS Senior Design: Study Room Availability

Lydia Shiffler

Lydia Shiffler,
Senior, Computer Science

Athens, OH 14 November 2019

It’s crazy how fast my time at OU flew by, but it’s finally my senior year. This year comes with many lasts, but also a lot of new and exciting things. One thing that is extremely new is partaking in a senior design project.

In our Computer Science senior design, we get together in groups of 4 and work together to design a piece of software. Professors from all majors come to us with ideas in hopes that one group will pick their idea and implement it. Once we pick a project, we have the rest of the year to make sure it is completed.

For my project, we will be checking study room availability. In the study rooms, we are going to put thermal sensors that we programmed to detect if someone is present in a room. There are so many rooms throughout the university that students can go in and have a quiet place to work, but you never know if they are occupied until you walk up to them to check. Our project takes away the guessing game and gives students mobile and desktop applications that they can go on to see the availability of every study room at the university.

This was a very cool project for Computer Science majors because not only do we have to create a user interface and a database, and work with a server, but we also get to work with hardware. We don’t have much experience with hardware, so it was a really great challenge.

So far, the project is going extremely well and it has been a blast working with friends to try to implement something that students will actually use in the future. Throughout my years here, students have always talked about wanting something like this so they don’t have to keep walking around the building to find a quiet place to study. Hopefully by the time new students come here next year, this will be fully implemented in all the study rooms across campus!

Road Trip to See The Maine

Maggie Allen

Maggie Allen,
Senior, Mechanical Engineering

Athens, OH 12 November 2019

For the long weekend, a friend and I traveled to Buffalo, NY and Toronto, ON to see my favorite band, The Maine. I was unable to make the Cleveland show, so we decided to make a trip out of it! After the concerts, we stayed an extra day in Toronto to explore the city and do touristy activities like going up the CN tower and seeing Niagara Falls.

Niagara Falls


Before the concerts in Buffalo and Toronto, we got dressed up in our gold outfits (the tour had a gold theme) and took pictures in the photobooth the band had set up before the concert.

The Maine

his tour is called ‘The Mirror’, so on-stage stood a mirror-like screen that displayed videos and lyrics throughout the concert. Everyone brought yellow flowers and threw them on stage during the last song, Flowers on The Grave. After the show, I also chatted with members of the band.

The Maine

Toronto was my 30th The Maine show, and the concert in Buffalo marked the 9th state I’ve seen them in. It’s crazy to think that a band I found in middle school would remain such a big part of my life until college.

Even after all this time, going to their shows brings me the same amount of happiness and excitement. This band has allowed me to travel to places I never would’ve thought, have given me a sense of belonging, and have provided me with an escape from the stressful world of school.

Dads Weekend 2019

Brittany Hesson

Brittany Hesson,
Senior, Mechanical Engineering

Athens, OH 10 November 2019

Dads weekend is one of my favorite weekends to spend in Athens. Every year my dad comes to visit, and we have such a good time together. Since the day my sister was born, it is rare that I get to spend time with just my dad so I always look forward to Dads Weekend. We use it as a time to get together and have a good time. Usually we go out to eat, watch some sports, and do something to get outside.

Dads Weekend

This year for Dads Weekend, my dad came in on Saturday and stayed until Sunday. Luckily for us, it fell on opening weekend for Ohio Basketball. My dad and I love to watch sports, so we went to watch the opening Men’s and Women’s basketball games. Both Ohio teams walked away with a win to start their season!

Dads Weekend

After the game we went to get dinner and then went back to my apartment. We had some of my friends come over with their dads and we all played cards while watching football. It was fun to introduce my dad to my friends as well as their dads.

On Sunday, we went golfing at the Ohio University Golf Course that is located on campus. It is a beautiful 9-hole courses that is always in great shape. My dad and I enjoy playing golf, and we have been playing together for years.

Dads Weekend

We made plans with another engineering ambassador and his dad to meet up and play golf on Sunday. He was excited that my friend and his dad got to join us and add in a little more competition. 9-holes later we crowned a winner who was…not me.

The course proved to be challenging because there were lots of leaves covering parts of the course. If the ball landed near the leaves it was impossible to find.

After we all played a round of golf, my dad took me out to dinner and then he went home. It is crazy to think that this was my last undergraduate Dads Weekend, but it was by far my favorite.

Seeing the Blue Jackets in Columbus

Logan Veley

Logan Veley,
Junior, Mechanical Engineering

Athens, OH 4 November 2019

Outside of classes it is always nice to relax and step away from school. One way that I enjoy spending my time away from school is by attending sporting events. Every fall, I look forward to all of the football games scheduled, and I often attend as many high school, Ohio State, and Ohio University football games as I can. I love being in the atmosphere and watching the athletes make electric plays on the field.

With fall rolling on into winter, I decided to take the opportunity to try watching a new sport. This past weekend, I was lucky to be able to attend my first Columbus Blue Jackets game. It was a beautiful day outside, and I had a great time exploring downtown Columbus and the arena district before the game.

Bluejackets Game

After dinner, I headed into Nationwide Arena for the start of the game. With nearly all of the seats full, the puck dropped to start the game. The game was full of hard hits on the glass in front of me, and there were even a couple of fights between the players. The Blue Jackets played hard, but ended up falling short at the end of the game. While the Jackets may not have won the game, I can’t wait to go back to my next CBJ game.

Favorite Spots in Athens

Allie Gabbard

Allie Gabbard,
Senior, Engineering Technology & Management

Athens, OH 3 November 2019

Now that I fall has finally set in full swing, I have really been able to finally enjoy my favorite part of Athens once again. The cool, fall air has set in, the bright moon shines at night, and last but not least, the leaves have changed color!

Athens is full of trees all shapes and sizes. They look beautiful all times of the year, but the best is when fall hits. The landscape changes and makes the drives to and from Athens so mesmerizing. During this time of year, there are three places on and around campus that I love to go to.

The first place many students enjoy going to is on campus. A short walk from Stocker Center, Emereti Park is the perfect place to sit and do homework. This small park just North of Ping and Walter Fieldhouse, is a beautiful area. There is a small pond, gazebos, benches and plenty of wildlife to keep you company. If you enjoy hanging around in a hammock, this is a perfect spot. In addition, a Pokestop! During the fall, the pond fills with the different color leaves as the landscapes takes its shape and prepares for winter.

My second favorite spot is a just a short walk from campus. If you leave the ARC and head north on Depot Street, just a top the hill before the stairs is a small ledge. I love to sit on the ledge and watch as the sun sets into the hills. It is a very quiet spot on campus and therefore is a perfect area to mediate or reminisce on all the memories created on campus. Since this ledge is on hill, it becomes a very popular area for pictures. I often take many pictures as the sun sets on this side of campus.

My third favorite hangout is a little hike off of campus. Across the Hocking, just off of Rock Riffle Road, there is a small trail that leads up to an opening on a hillside. This is a very rewarding view as the hike is very much of an upwards hike and can be very exhausting. Once to the top, the clearing allows you to clearly look over all of campus. This is my favorite spot on campus to hike and just absorb all of campus life in one snapshot. This view is breathtaking but truly captures all of campus. During the fall, this hike is by far the best because campus becomes a beautiful collage of oranges, yellows and browns.

In conclusion, this campus is the prettiest campus by far. Perhaps a little bias, but in my opinion, the fall season is the prettiest here in Athens. These three areas best encompass the fall beauties and brings peace to mind while the semester is in full swing!

Student Senate, from Environmental Affairs to President

Lydia Ramlo

Lydia Ramlo,
Senior, Civil Engineering (Russ College) and Environmental Studies (Honors Tutorial College)

Athens, OH 28 October 2019

One of the best decisions I have made during my time at Ohio University was joining Student Senate. After my first year, I switched my majors from theater and social work to civil engineering and environmental studies. I was looking to join an organization that aligns with my new majors. A friend told me I should look into the Environmental Affairs Commission on Student Senate.

During my time as Vice-Commissioner of Environmental Affairs, I helped organize the first Environmental Justice Summit on campus as well as found a new Bobcat family. Through my four years in Senate, I was the Environmental Affairs Commissioner, Treasurer, and now, President.

This organization has made me into the person I am today. I have been challenged as well as rewarded. Now, as I walk around campus, I can see the reusable bags and to-go boxes I helped implement. I also run into people I met through this organization from my fellow student leaders to OHIO’s administrators across campus.

OHIO Student Senate

The best part of Student Senate is being able to help my fellow Bobcats. I love when people come into our office whether it is to grab a free blue book, ask a SAC question, or talk about an issue or concern.

Whenever I am asked “You’re an engineer. Why are you in Student Senate?” I do not know where to begin. Usually, my answer is “Because I am now a better engineer because of it.”

Cru Fall Retreat

JKay Dunlevy

Kay Dunlevy,
Senior, Mechanical Engineering

Athens, OH 27 October 2019

Outside of class, I am involved in a Christian organization on campus called Cru. Every year, Cru holds Fall Retreat at Scioto Hills. The whole weekend is packed full of fun (ultimate pumpkin tournament, ziplining, etc.), and a chance for students to deepen their relationships with God and each other.

This was my fourth Fall Retreat, and I look forward to it every year—it’s such a fun and refreshing way to spend time away from school! Since I’m a senior and this was my last Fall Retreat, it was especially meaningful to me, but there were three things that really stuck out:

  1. I spent lot of time with my roommates (below), who I met through Cru as a freshman and who have been some of my closest friends throughout college. We’re all in different majors and are really busy during the week, so it was great to catch up with them!
  2. Cru Retreat

  3. One of my favorite activities at Scioto Hills is the Goliath Swing (below). I hate heights, and I always freak out as I get strapped into a harness, pulled up way too high, and have to yank the release cord that sends me swinging out over a pond. It’s terrifying, but it’s also SO much fun!!!
  4. Cru Retreat

  5. Normally outside speakers are brought in, but this year many of us already knew the speakers since they had worked for Cru at OU in the past. It was great to see them again, and a lot of what they spoke about was really powerful. Their talks provoked a lot of good discussion throughout the weekend, and I felt continually challenged to grow in my faith.

Overall, it was a great weekend. Cru has provided me with some of the most fun and meaningful times I have had in college, and I’m glad that my last Fall Retreat was one to remember.