ISAT students triumph at ASEM Conference

by Sophie Edlich and Lynn Radocha

ISAT students at ASEM Conference

JMU Integrated Science and Technology (ISAT) students Connor Gavin, Dairon Pleasant, Garrett Redden, and Franklin Wallace presented their research projects at the 2022 American Society for Engineering Management (ASEM) International Annual Conference held in Tampa, Florida. The four students also took 2nd place in the International Engineering Management Case Competition at the conference.

Wallace presented "Bioinspired Design for Manufacturing Systems Sustainability," while Pleasant, Gavin and Redden presented "Bioinspired Design of Material Architecture for Additive Manufacturing." Both projects focused on using concepts of the natural world as an approach to finding solutions to human engineering problems.

The ASEM case competition challenges undergraduate and graduate students worldwide to define an engineering management problem, analyze the case, find a solution, and compose a presentation. Before the conference, students were given an engineering management case about the Tesla battery challenges. They had 5 hours to define the problem, analyze the case, provide a solution, and compose a presentation. Students then participated in part two of the competition. They were given a follow-up case, revised their analysis, and presented it to the judges.

ISAT professors Hao Zhang and Rod MacDonald have been bringing students to the competition since 2018. "Each year, I witness how our spine courses – systems thinking and systems dynamics – shape our students,” says Zhang. “In the beginning, we were a little behind. Last year we moved to 3rd place, and this year, we came in 2nd." Zhang believes that developing problem-solving skills in ISAT courses give students an advantage. "The fact that our students are doing better at the conference each year shows how our courses are preparing them to become problem-solvers," he explains. "We are investing more into both the managing and analyzing side of sciences, which greatly helps our students when faced with intricate problems."

Zhang was particularly amazed by their performance in the case competition. “It's a very intensive process, and they proved their problem-solving skills," he adds.

Back to Top

Published: Monday, November 7, 2022

Last Updated: Tuesday, November 15, 2022

Related Articles