Homecoming and the Marching 110

Caroline wilson

Caroline Wilson,
Junior, Chemical and Biomolecular Engineering

Athens, OH 4 October 2015

It’s the most wonderful time of the year! Hundreds of alumni flock in from all corners of the United States to be a part of the Most Exciting Band in the Land one more time. Some band members affectionately refer to Homecoming as “Christmas,” and while the promise of seeing family and friends at the end of it all does add some enjoyment to the week, this is also the time of year where we work our absolute hardest to make sure that our show truly is better than the best ever.

When I was a senior in high school, I came to visit Ohio University on the same weekend that the Marching 110 was putting on their annual Varsity Show. My oldest sister, Rachel, is an alumna of OU and the 110, so I’m sure that it was no coincidence that she insisted that I come visit during one of the most exciting shows of the season. I was tired out from a long day of tours by the time the band was about to play, and to be honest, I would have preferred to have been curled up in bed. I was not prepared for what happened next: it changed my life. When the Marching 110 took the stage, I was absolutely floored. Never in my life had I seen that many people who were truly passionate about what they were doing at one time. They were completely alive, and I wanted to be a part of their group with every part of my being.

Flash-forward three years, and here I am–music section leader to the trombones, nervously preparing for what is sure to be yet another thrilling show in order to impress my sister, who will be coming back to cheer me on. Even with the stresses of school–midterms, group projects, research, and everything else–I wouldn’t trade being a member of the Marching 110 for anything.

So next time you see us shaking it on the field, I hope you will be able to see that there’s nowhere else we’d rather be.

Summer Research Work at Ohio University

Alyson Meister

Alyson Meister,
Senior, Mechanical Engineering

Athens, OH 2 October 2015

I spent my second summer in Athens this year. Last summer I stayed to take a class and I had a lot of fun, but this year I wanted to get more out of my time here and I did!
Not only did I take a class to get ahead and make my senior year a little easier, I also spent time doing research for a few professors. I worked on two projects over the summer with very different focuses, since I’m not exactly sure where I want to direct my career after graduation.

For one project, I worked with a team of students to design and build a test rig to collect data on an innovative particle capture system. Our system was specifically designed to capture coal fly ash which is typically done by Electrostatic Precipitators (ESPs) which are large, expensive, and require high voltages. This project required a lot of hands-on work in the machining labs, troubleshooting, and collaboration with students and professors.

I also did an independent study project dealing with the material properties of bones. This project was mostly computer-based work and involved writing MATLAB codes and running statistical tests on acquired data. I also completed an abstract for the Biomedical Engineering Society and will be presenting my work at their conference in Tampa, FL next week. This will be my first time presenting individual research work and I am really excited and nervous!

Overall I’d say my second summer in Athens was a success and I gained a broad range of skills and experiences that will benefit me in the future!

Job Hunting Season

Steve Toth

Steve Toth,
Senior, Engineering Technology and Management

Athens, OH 27 September 2015

As my senior year goes on, the threat of real life comes closer. This past week, Ohio University hosted four days of career fairs, two of which were open to the whole university and two specifically for the Russ College of Engineering.

All four of these fairs were PACKED. Knowing that I need to find a full time job following graduation it felt really good knowing that Ohio University is there to help me not only to earn the needed education to succeed in industry but also provide the needed resources to find the job of my dreams.

Not only does Ohio University put on career fairs to help students find jobs but they also support an entire office with this sole purpose, the
Career and Leadership Development Center
(CLDC). This office helps students develop effective resumes, learn to interview effectively and learn to network. Additionally, the CLDC offers career coaching services and several workshops every semester to aid in the job search process.

One of the best services the Career and Leadership Development Center offers is “Bobcat Careerlink”. This is an online resource where students can find and apply for jobs and internships by companies searching specifically for Ohio University students and graduates.

With all of these resources available to us, it really feels great to be an Ohio University student where we are not just numbers and our faculty and staff truly care about our career success.

Participating in the Robe Leadership Institute

Adam Robertson

Adam Robertson,
Senior, Mechanical Engineering

Athens, OH 20 September 2015

Well, it’s the beginning of another amazing school year here at Ohio University. It always feels so great coming back to school, especially after a long summer of working. This semester is my first semester as an Engineering Ambassador, so I am really excited for this year.

It is also my first semester being part of the Robe Leadership Institute. The Robe Leadership Institute (RLI) is an awesome class/organization where engineering students participate in lectures with Dr. Bayless and debate the characteristics or roles of a leader. Each student does have to go through an interview process to be able to get in the class. However, I feel it is absolutely worth it.

It’s only been a couple of weeks and the class is already very close with each other. The 17 of us participated in a team-building challenge over at The Ridges the first week of class and it really bonded us together.

Throughout the semester we will get the opportunity to interview many influential people, which include anyone from Professors to CEO’s. I have learned so much on leadership so far and yet we haven’t even interviewed anyone. I would highly recommend this class to every student. Even though this class can be incredibly demanding, the material that I’m learning in this class is not taught in any other class.

Designing a Drone

Ali McCormick

Ali McCormick,
Senior, Electrical Engineering

Athens, OH 15 September 2015

As an Electrical Engineering Senior, you are required to complete a yearlong (two semester) senior design course in order to graduate. In this course we are divided into teams and given a project to work on. For my project, my team has been assigned the hedgehog indoor-search-and-rescue drone.

The objectives of this particular project are to design and implement a design on a hedgehog-style drone that will enable it to do multiple required tasks. The drone must navigate through indoor hallways of Stocker basement without crashing. The drone must achieve autonomous flight, meaning that it will fly on its own for the most part, but have the ability to be taken over by an operator at any point.

The drone must also collect and store data that is taken by an infrared camera that will be attached to the drone. The data will later be used to create a 2-D map of the environment. Finally, the drone must use the infrared camera to locate heat signatures and analyze if the specific signature is a person or not.

This summer I had the opportunity to get a head start on the project by working as an undergraduate researcher for Ohio University’s Avionics department. I took a look at the specific lasers that will be used for our project to help the drone avoid collisions. I created code that enabled the lasers to have basic functionality with a Raspberry Pi, and we will be furthering this code as we begin moving forward with the project. I’m excited to see how the project progresses.

Flying and Art

Drago Cvijetinovic

Drago Cvijetinovic,
Senior, Aviation

Athens, OH 14 September 2015

So it’s the start of week four of Fall Semester and everyone is still trying to get settled in here at OU. The streets and classrooms, bustling with students, radiate enthusiasm and excitement.

However, while everyone is just settling in, I’m going “full throttle” academically.

I decided to stay here in Athens over the summer to get ahead in my flight training. The start of the summer moved slowly by because of the rain, but once the sun came out, so did I. In the past 90 days, I’ve been able to log over 50 hours of flight time, 25 of which were solo flights. I spent most of my summer flying all over Ohio and her neighboring states.


My best flight had to be a solo flight to Smyrna, Tennessee, located approximately 10 miles southeast of Nashville. The whole flight took over 6 hours, but it challenged my aviation skills to the fullest extent.

Besides spending my time in the air, I spent a great amount of time on the ground working on small personal projects. I’ve always loved doodling, so I tried to branch out into the art scene. I studied some current artists and different styles. As a result, I did something that I wasn’t very familiar with: spray paint art.

The LeBron painting was the very first painting that I’ve ever done. I hand painted that about four years ago.


The Yoda painting was the first full spray paint painting that I’ve done. That was this past summer.

Yoda Beats

I think that I mastered spraying on canvases, and I’m now considering painting the graffiti wall located on the top of the Richland Bridge.

This fall, I’m going to get an opportunity to fly a complex aircraft and complete my commercial license. Shortly after that, I’ll start my training to become a flight instructor here at OU and teach incoming aviators new skills that my past instructors once taught me.

A CE in a ChemE Lab

Mira Cooper

Mira Cooper,
Junior, Civil Engineering

Athens, OH 13 September 2015

As a civil engineer, I don’t have to take very many chemistry classes. Which is sad, because I LOVE chemistry. So, when I found an opportunity to work in an environmental lab that combined my interests in chemistry and water quality engineering, I was so excited. I sent some emails, talked to a few professors, and wound up with the job!

During the semester I work 10 hours a week at the
Institute for Sustainable Energy and the Environment
(ISEE), which is part of the Ohio Coal Research Center. I started out working on a project with a goal of finding a chemical method of treating the wastewater from hydraulic fracturing natural gas extraction. I was in the lab, working directly with the chemicals, calculations, and analytical machinery needed to make progress on this project. I worked on that project for about a year, including winter break and over summer, where I would work 30-35 hours a week. It was awesome! I was involved every step of the way, from the writing of the standard operating procedure documents all the way to the analytical testing of the final product.

But, frankly, the best part of working at ISEE is the support that I get from everyone else who works there. There’s an amazing sense of teamwork and camaraderie–everyone is willing to help out in any way they can. We’re constantly learning from each other, and we’re learning things that typically aren’t taught to engineers in our respective specialties. I’m a CE essentially doing ChemE work, with a sprinkling of ME tasks here and there. I’ve learned to use power tools, which was a VERY big step for me because I’ve always been afraid of big, scary machines that could rip your hand off without a second’s delay.

I’m really glad that I ended up working at ISEE. In about a year and a half, I went from Undergraduate Research Assistant to Analytical Lab Lead. Now I have much more responsibility relating to the lab itself, rather than the individual projects that come through. It’s really uplifting to see so much growth in myself from when I started to now. It reminds me about how fluid education is, and how you’re always learning and always growing.