Category Archives: Industrial and Systems Engineering

Optimization in Senior Design

Melinda Nelson

Melinda Nelson,
Senior, Industrial and Systems Engineering

Athens, OH 8 April 2016

The biggest project of many senior engineering students is Senior Capstone. This is a course where all your knowledge and experience are tried out in a real world scenario. Each group has an industry client and is assigned the project the client chooses. I knew that this could be a challenge and a great learning experience for life after college. It has definitely met both of those expectations!

The team I am on was assigned a project with Exel/DHL. They run warehouses for customers in various consumer industries. Our task was to create a model that could be used to evaluate existing and new, custom box sizes for packaging their customers’ products.

We created a model to take into account the size of products, boxes and costs involved in using different variations of box sizes. The model consisted of multiple equations that describe the different aspects of the situation we were studying. We set it up to choose optimal box sets based on making the void (empty space) when packing products as small as possible.

This project incorporated so many skills that I had been building throughout my time in college! Not only were skills in software and coursework utilized but also soft skills like presenting ideas and logistics and time management skills for working on the project while continuing to take a full load of courses! It also challenged and helped me to build on my leadership and motivational skills when working in a group. It was definitely a challenge working with conflicting schedules, deadlines, client demands and having to learn on the job.

Our project was to search for optimal box sets but the biggest takeaway for me was learning to create optimal team work and time management when working. These are huge takeaways that can be used in everyday life for years to come! Even though it had its stressful times, overall Senior Capstone was a great learning experience I truly enjoyed.

Summer Co-op Plans

Alexa Hoynacke

Alexa Hoynacke,
Junior, Industrial and Systems Engineering

Athens, OH 24 March 2016

Its crazy to think about how there is only one more month left of my junior year. As the semester comes to a close I have been extremely busy with class, research, and work. As finals approach classes have been getting busier and busier.

Spring semester is always crazier than the fall because OU has so many great events when the weather gets better. A huge event coming up is the Student Expo, which is a university-wide research exposition. I have been working on my research project for almost 2 years now and in 2 weeks I will finally be presenting it in front of judges at the Student Expo.

Once my junior year comes to an end I will be moving back home (Cleveland area) for the summer to start my summer internship. I am extremely excited to be working with Eaton Corporation this summer.

Eaton Logo

Eaton is a multinational power-management company. I will be working as an Industrial Engineering Intern in the Operations Sector. I will be working in a team in my department and with one other intern.

I received this internship by going to the Society of Women Engineers National Conference in Nashville this past fall. I am so grateful that I was given the opportunity to go with the OU chapter of SWE to this conference. Working for Eaton has been a goal of mine for a while now so I am counting down the days till I can finally start my summer internship.

ISE Senior Design: Simulation

Esteban Rodriguez

Esteban Rodriguez,
Senior, Industrial and Systems Engineering

Athens, OH 20 March 2016

As an industrial and systems engineering student, I have to partake in a senior design project. Towards the end of last semester, we got assigned to a project based on our group preference. My team of four was assigned to do a project for DHL/Exel, to simulate the operations of one of their warehouses.

DHL/Excel operates the warehouse and want us to calculate the capacity of the warehouse during its peak season. Since the facility stores toys, the peak season for the demand of this toys is the month before Christmas, and 40 percent of the sales occur during this month.

Our group decided to build a simulation model of their picking and packing processes. These two processes are the ones that require the most labor and account for most of the processing time.

For building the model, we are using a software that we learned in our simulation class, and in addition to this we have our advisor who is the “master” in simulation.

The project has been challenging since we’ve had to deal with managing the time of all of our team members, as well as the difficulty of the project itself. I am very excited to see the outcome of this project and really hope that our project improves the company’s operations!

Spring Break in Vegas

Paige Preske

Paige Preske,
Senior, Industrial and Systems Engineering

Athens, OH 7 March 2016

This spring break I traveled all the way out west! I spent two days in Las Vegas enjoying what the city had to offer. The second part of my vacation was spent climbing and hiking through national parks in Utah and Nevada.

Spring Break

I was lucky enough to have weather in the high 70s and sunny the entire week. The biggest difference I noticed between Ohio and Nevada, besides the obvious temperature difference, was the dry air. It made me very thirsty!

One of the parks I explored in Utah was Snow Canyon State Park. This park has amazing views of red and white Navajo sandstone. The park also has lava tubes throughout the park. I have a very big fear of heights but this park had very simple and beginner trails I could walk.

Another park that I visited was Valley of Fire State Park in Nevada. This park has lizards everywhere and in all sizes. The park is rich in history with 3,000 year-old Indian petroglyphs on the sandstone. I really enjoyed looking at the petroglyphs because it is so amazing how they got on these rocks 50 feet in the air.

Spring Break

The last major thing I did over my spring break was go golfing. The golf courses out in Nevada are beautiful with mountains surrounding every part of the course.

Spring Break in PCB with Cru

Melinda Nelson

Melinda Nelson,
Senior, Industrial and Systems Engineering

Athens, OH 6 March 2016

Spring break is always a highlight of the spring semester for many students. The past two spring breaks, I have gone on trips with Cru, a Christian ministry and student organization on campus. Each year, a charter bus full of students and staff head off for a weeklong stay in Panama City Beach, Florida! At a luxury resort, we have daily sessions with music, speakers, lessons and of course lots of fun. Our afternoons are spent on the beach having conversations with beach goers about their lives and beliefs on spiritual things and sharing with them about who God is and how to have a relationship with Him. We also got to hang out at the pools, go swimming and play a lot of volleyball.

Volleyball on PCB

One fun activity that happens during the week is called Creative Dates. The idea behind creative dating is to get to know more people by having dinner together and it is a lot of fun! The first night a guys’ condo will cook dinner for and serve a girls’ condo and the next night they switch. It’s always an interesting and often entertaining couple of evenings!

Creative Date

My favorite thing about PCB is the community aspect. Living in a condo with people you may not really know at the beginning of the week, and leaving with five new best friends at the end of the week is one of the best feelings there is.

Spring Break Friends

Building lasting friendships with others who share the same passions you do is just one of the amazing benefits of joining student organizations while in college. I have made some of my best friends through organizations on campus including Cru and Institute of Industrial Engineers (IIE). OU has over 200 student organizations; there’s something for everyone so they are definitely worth checking out!

News and Recreation

Paige Preske

Paige Preske,
Senior, Industrial and Systems Engineering

Athens, OH 26 February 2016

Wrapping up my senior year I have some long days in the classroom. So when I get home I like to relax by getting a work out in and checking up on current events.

I love running outside for my work out, but with the weather being fickle I have been getting laps in at our aquatic center. For me it’s a great way to unwind and blow off some steam. As a bonus, our aquatic center is big enough that I don’t ever have a problem finding a lane to swim in.

After my workout I’m pretty tired and enjoy kicking back and watching the news. Usually I have the news on the T.V. in the background and read up on articles on my phone.

I recently found a news source that emails me daily with a briefing on everything that’s new from the day before. It’s short, sweet, and entertaining; I find it a good way to keep up with the primaries.

By the time I’ve worked out and caught up on the news I’ve unwound from the day. Usually I’ll look over my agenda before I end my day, I’ll add new assignments and make sure I’m on schedule with other assignments. After all that, I’m ready to start the next day.

Alexa Hoynacke

Alexa Hoynacke,
Junior, Industrial and Systems Engineering

Athens, OH 22 February 2016

An activity that I have been very involved in at Ohio University since coming here as a freshman 2-1/2 years ago is Ohio University Outdoor Pursuits (OUOP).

Two weeks before starting freshman year I participated in the OUOP New Adventures program. Along with 7 other freshmen, I went on a 4-day rock climbing trip in the Red River Gorge. I had rock climbed a little bit in high school, but this was my first time on real rock. This experience was absolutely amazing and I met one of my best friends in college on this trip. I recommend that every freshman look into this program.

In this picture I am belaying my friend Charlie on a route in the Red River Gorge. This was a trip we took last summer.

Rock Climbing

Since participating in New Adventures I have had some awesome experience with OUOP. I have gone on kayaking, backpacking and caving trips. I currently am an OUOP rock wall supervisor. I am very lucky that I found a job doing something that I love.

This past weekend was the Spring Climbing Competition. About 40 people from around the state participated which was an awesome turnout. I worked the competition so I help judge our intermediate division and helped run the event. OUOP offers something for every student and I am so happy I got involved my freshman year.