MIME Capstone Design

Put MIME's talented engineering seniors to work researching on behalf of your company

MIME Capstone Design is a two-course sequence (MIME 497 and 498) in which Oregon State mechanical, industrial, manufacturing, and energy systems engineering seniors design and implement workable solutions to real-world engineering problems. The opportunity to synthesize and showcase their technical, communication, leadership, and teamwork skills readies MIME students for success as engineering professional.

MIME Capstone Design project teams – over the course of our engineering students' senior year – develop a complete paper or conceptual solution in just ten weeks, and then work to implement test, and revise in the following ten-week term. The teams interact with the project sponsor to define design specifications and expected results. For sponsors, it is an excellent way to leverage cost effective "research and development" while inspiring students with "real-world" experience. Download a brochure [PDF] about our program.

Online form to submit a project proposal

How it Works – What Kinds of Projects

A.) Designing a Product-focused Project

  • You have an idea or need for a new mechanical or electro-mechanical device or process, but don’t have the time, resources or facilities to do it yourself.
  • You’d like to improve the efficiency or ergonomics of machinery on your manufacturing floor.
  • You need help solving a problem with an existing mechanical/electro-mechanical device or process.
  • You’d like a custom software application designed to improve decision-making or recordkeeping in your manufacturing or service operations.

B.) Designing a Process-focused Project

  • You see manufacturing or service processes that could be improved for greater effectiveness, efficiency, and/or safety.
  • You see that your operations are hampered by poor facilities layout.
  • Your workstations could be improved through ergonomic analysis and re-engineering.
  • You’d like to analyze, optimize, and clearly document work procedures to reduce process and product variability.

How it Works – Benefits to Industry

MIME Capstone Design project sponsorship is a two-way relationship that promises significant returns for your participation. Becoming an MIME Capstone Design Sponsor offers numerous benefits, for example:

  • A relatively small investment of time and money provides a solution to a design problem.
  • It provides a “no-obligation” opportunity to work with and train potential future hires.
  • It raises your organization’s visibility at OSU (and beyond) and leads to stronger working relationships with OSU MIME faculty.
  • It’s a tool with which you can help shape and influence our next generation of engineers — in Oregon and the Pacific Northwest, and around the world.

How it Works – Benefits to Students

The MIME Capstone Design experience puts the final polish on our students’ track to become professional engineers.
Students are responsible for all aspects of their project, including:

  • Working with the project sponsor to fully define project requirements and design specifications.
  • Analyzing and benchmarking “state-of-the-art” solutions and current systems in the project area.
  • Identifying multiple design solutions.
  • Spec’ing a complete design including, as needed, component sizing, sourcing, and budget.
  • Implementing and testing the design, and revising it to meet requirements.
  • Meeting project deadlines.

Please contact John Parmigiani if you'd like to discuss an MIME Capstone Design Project

How it Works – The Fine Print

Proposal Submission
Your MIME capstone project proposal should include a descriptive title, brief summary of problem, and concise listing of project requirements and constraints. (The student team will work with your company to finalize the requirements.)

Project Mentor Involvement
The project mentor serves as the project team’s technical consultant and point person, and reviews and approves project milestones. This individual typically makes several trips to campus and also may host the team for onsite visits.

Team Interaction Expectations
Project sponsor–student team interactions are extremely important and should occur regularly throughout the project. The project mentor must approve the documentation generated at each project milestone. These documents serve as contracts for what the project team must accomplish.

Intellectual Property (IP)
By default, any IP created by the student team during the project belongs to the students. However, other IP arrangements also may be negotiated.

Project Funding and Sustaining Donation
Project sponsors are expected to provide funding and/or materials for prototype construction and process implementation. We also request a $5,000 sustaining donation in support of the MIME Capstone Design program.

Online form to submit a project proposal.