Senior Design exposes mechanical engineering students to the design process and experience that is typical for a practicing engineer in industry. During Senior Design, students will be assigned projects based upon their interests. Student teams will be paired with a project client. The teams will be required to integrate the knowledge and skills they have acquired throughout their undergraduate studies to develop innovative solutions that adhere to engineering standards as well as problem constraints.

For questions about designing a project, contact John Fick, University Center Coordinator, at 608.342.7528 or email fickj@uwplatt.edu or Jessica Fick at 608.342.1721 or email meulbroj@uwplatt.edu


Design projects will be completed by teams consisting of typically three to five students during the last semester of their studies. These teams will have access to a variety of state-of-the-practice mechanical and other engineering tools. Students and faculty will meet weekly in formal progress meetings and will meet additionally as the need arises.

Project Management

The course instructor, with the assistance of the Engineering, Mathematics and Science Project Coordinator, will solicit and select projects for each student team. For the remainder of the semester, each team will be responsible for all project management, including adhering to deadlines, communicating with the client, ensuring that their work stays on schedule, organizing project meetings, and other related tasks and responsibilities.

Client Responsibilities 

The project client will be responsible for providing the student team with a high-quality, challenging, and real-world problem to solve. Additionally, the client will provide the necessary background information and data; help to define the problem; reply to student requests for information throughout the semester; and attend the final presentation.

Sponsor a Project 

Clients are invited to financially sponsor the Senior Design class. For more information about sponsorship opportunities, please contact the Engineering, Mathematics and Science Project Coordinator.

Please note that sponsorship is not considered a contract for deliverables, as projects are carried out by undergraduate students pursuing an educational program and not providing engineering services.

Scope of Work  

Students will each work extensively over the course of the semester and produce a project report that may include preliminary designs, cost estimates, and related information.

Project Guidelines  

The best projects have a very engaged client who will benefit from the work being performed. The client-team interaction and working relationship provides a central component of this real-world experience. Projects must have a significant design component and require analysis of the problem. This means that the students will be given a set of constraints; they must use knowledge from engineering courses that they have previously taken; they must understand and use codes and standards; and the project must require iteration on multiple alternatives to obtain an ideal solution.

The project team will deliver their final presentation to a diverse audience of stakeholders during the final week of the semester.