by Nicole Capozziello
Published May 18, 2020
Jared Himes: I’ve been designing and building my own modulating living space since freshman year of college. For example, an overhead shelf for my desk with a mounted monitor, 3D printed pencil holder, iPhone stand, iPad holder and more.
Elaine Lin: My study space occupied by a long wood table I hand-made by myself, Polaroid photos of people I hold very dearly to, and Legos of females who inspire me to continue the STEAM path, a NASA poster, and books/electronic devices that help me study.
Sam Stoelting: This is my classroom! What better place to work than on a project of your own. This is on my current project of rebuilding a Polaris sportsman 600 while still learning all my school work such as physics and calculus.
Cameron Grace: This is the shortest commute into a classroom I have ever had! In all seriousness, during this COVID-19 trial stay strong and never give up. Much like our university, where quotes and wisdom line the halls, I have decided to continue the tradition!
Amy Faville: Not my typical study space but why not take a break every once and a while (as much as engineering allows) bonus points if you can find out how many jugs of water and shampoo cause the mass of our trick underwater bin to overcome the buoyant force and stay hidden?
Brandon Gonzalez:This is the desk at which I now live and work. You asked for something "creative", but I thought that nothing would be more meaningful or valuable than a candid glimpse at my post-apocalyptic lifestyle.
Harrison Goldstein: I tried to work in the basement but it was too cold so I decided to move to the only other quiet place in the house which happened to be a bar. Theres a lot of space and the stools are kinda comfy.
While students across the country have been enjoying their newfound short commute time, they’ve also been adjusting to the reality of working from home.
When it comes to home workspaces, mechanical and aerospace students have been especially creative, putting to use their designing minds and building skills.
Recently, Kemper Lewis, former chair of the Department of Mechanical and Aerospace Engineering and now Dean of the School of Engineering and Applied Sciences, invited students in the department to share pictures of their new “classroom” on Instagram. A number of students answered the call.
Here are some highlights of what students are doing to creatively maximize their environments.
Everyone’s workspace is of course built to accommodate a screen or two–or in the case of senior Harrison Lofredo, upwards of nine. “#guessmyenergybill” his post reads. Meanwhile, senior Amy Fayville posted a picture of her laptop balanced atop a hidden underwater bin in a bubble bath. “Bonus points if you can find out how many jugs of water and shampoo cause the mass of our trick underwater bin to overcome the buoyant force and stay hidden,” she challenged her engineering colleagues.
For some students, like senior Jared Hines, the competition provided an opportunity to showcase years of dedicated work designing and building his own work/life space. His hand-built space includes an enclosed 3D printer with backlights, as well as several 3D printed objects, such as a pencil holder and iPhone stand. He’s also fashioned a pullout shelf so he can play the keyboard right at his desk.
Students’ home workspaces are also places of inspiration. Senior Elaine Lin does work below a NASA poster and a string of Polaroid photos of people dear to her, with little Lego models of women in STEM and their contributions set up on her desktop.
PhD student Cameron Grace has brought a bit of UB home with him, referring to the giant whiteboard on which he’s written meaningful quotes by everyone from Fred Rogers to Rumi to Marie Curie. “Much like our university, where quotes and wisdom line the halls, I have decided to continue the tradition,” he says.
“Creativity is a critical skill for engineers and it was great seeing how innovative our students are being despite the challenging season we are all in,” said Lewis. “They were all not only impressive but inspiring.”
All the students who participated in the competition received some swag from the department. The top five, as determined by a panel of MAE faculty and staff, were Jared Hines (jarhead), Elaine Lin (moonevanesile), Sam Stoelting (sam_st), Cameron Grace (ninjaengineer) and Amy Faville (aefaville12).
Check out all of their posts on Instagram, under #UBMAE and #UBuffaloStrong.