School of Engineering
Two Tufts engineering grads, Mike Brown, E10, and Ryan Stolp, E10, have created the Alpine Hammock, a one-man shelter used when traveling in the mountains. When these two nature lovers had trouble finding a lightweight but weather-resistant shelter that was also comfortable, they ventured out and made their own.
Mike and Ryan are trying to fund the project using Kickstarter, an all-or-nothing funding method that focuses on creative projects. They hope to raise $40,000 by Thursday, August 30.
Check out their unique invention and support these Tufts grads!
By Kristin Livingston, A05. From the Fall 2012 issue of Blueprint.
Ever wanted to build a synthesizer? Or create your own digital drum set? Or learn how to sing without paying for voice lessons? There’s an app for that—or there soon will be, thanks to Tufts engineers and a pioneering course called “Music Apps for the iPad.”
Music Lecturer Paul Lehrman, AG10, and Computer Science Lecturer Ming Chow, E02, EG04, teamed up last spring to create a course that would foster musical composition and competition, teach the basics of music and mobile development, and hopefully create commercially viable apps, setting talented students on the path to early business success.
Funded by a grant from renowned piano makers Steinway Musical Instruments, Inc., the course, says Chow, was an instant hit. “It was filled within a few hours.” Over the semester, students spent 25 percent of the time working with local app developers and guest lecturers in music theory; the other 75 percent was spent on the coding. Final projects ranged from sound mixers to auto-soundtrack systems that can detect the mood of YouTube videos and suggest a soundtrack from a library of music.
Chow is very grateful to Steinway for opening up creative academic opportunities and hopes to repeat the course this spring. “I liked what Steinway was interested in: anything that can help facilitate the new generation to play music and share work with people all over the world.”
Take a peek inside the “Music Apps for the iPad” class:
As current STOMP Fellows, Emma Rubin, E14, Hannah Garfield, E14, and Andrew Bennett, E15, more than understand the importance of multiple methods in teaching. From hands-on activities to written or spoken instructions, these fellows have done it all to teach K-12 students engineering and problem solving skills. This summer, they outdid themselves and created what may be the most creative and entertaining engineering video of all time to explain the different types of engineering–with Legos!
Evan Weinberg, E03, discovered his passion for teaching through a resident tutor in math and physics he maintained while at Tufts. The fall after graduation, he began teaching math at the ninth grade level through the New York City Teaching Fellows program. Nine years later, Evan proudly praises one of his first students’ recent graduation from his alma mater, explaining the special connection two Jumbos share across generations:
It isn’t a miracle that he will cross the stage to receive his Tufts diploma today. Far from it – he did the hard work to get where he is, and I can’t take credit for the great things he learned both in my presence and away from it. And his story is far from over – I hope he (like many other students I’ve told this) keeps me in mind if I ever need a job. His story, and those of the rest of his class earning degrees this month, make me incredibly proud to be a teacher.
That said, there is something special about our story. The unique way that Tufts now connects us is unlike any I’ve ever had with others, even with my own Tufts classmates in the class of 2003. I hope that he can look back fondly to his times on campus as I do from time to time. For whatever small part I served in getting him there, I am glad to have helped him out.
Evan currently teaches Advanced Algebra/Algebra 2, Geometry, Calculus AB, Physics, and a robotics elective for both middle and high school students at the Hangzhou International School, currently serving 300 students K-12 from around the world. The excerpt above was taken from his personal blog about teaching, learning and technology.
Recent grads Cliff Bargar, E12, Will Langford, E12, Jeff Prescott, E12, and Nick Stone, E12, walked away with a second place award at the FAA (Federal Aviation Administration) Design Competition earlier this month for their Hungry Hippo-like design. For their category, “Airport Operations and Maintenance Challenge,” the competitors created a prototype, dubbed FODHippo, that would act as a Foreign Object Debris (FOD) removal system on airport runways. In the video below, the students test their design at Logan airport, demonstrating its ability for locomotion, navigation, FOD removal, and FOD storage. The prototype was also created as part of their Tufts Mechanical Engineering Senior Design project in 2011.
Tufts Gospel Choir, otherwise known as Music 72, is a popular Arts credit course among undergrads. Led by former Tufts student and Music Department faculty member David Coleman, G01, the class brings together a large and diverse group of students, including both Christians and non-Christians. The resulting choir, formally known as the Third Day Gospel Choir, is always a hit and many students repeat the course for pure fun. Each semester concludes with a packed performance in Cohen Auditorium. Lucky for us, a video of their most recent show has been shared on YouTube. Check it out:
It’s been a little quiet on campus since the end of the semester and commencement, so you can imagine our excitement when the Jackson Jills posted a new video from their 2012 Spring Show. If you’d like to hear more, their latest album Playing With Fire is now available on iTunes.
Using technology in the classroom can be a great way for professors’ to keep students interested and engaged. Tufts’ Teaching with Technology Awards calls for students to nominate an instructor who they feel is “effectively using technology to support teaching and learning.” After nominations are submitted, judges determine the winners.
This video highlights the unique ways this year’s winners are using technology to teach every day here on campus:
The Teaching with Technology Award 2012 winners are:
- Lee Minardi, Civil and Environmental Engineering, School of Engineering
- Barbara Parmenter, Urban and Environmental Policy and Planning, School of Arts and Sciences
- Misha Eliasziw, Biostatistics, Public Health and Community Medicine, School of Medicine
- David Hammer, Education, School of Arts and Sciences
- Kris Manjapra, History, School of Arts and Sciences
Each year, graduating seniors in the electrical and computer engineering program are required to work on a two semester project that addresses and attempts to solve an engineering problem. Seniors Yorman Garcia, Taylor Perkins, Farhan Shaukat, and Weiyi Zheng, otherwise known as “Team Vermillion,” worked together to create a “smarter drone” that can pick the best navigational path using GPS, an Arduino, and a Wi-Fi chip. The project is in conjunction with a Senior Design Course taught by professor Ronald Lasser that extends the full year. In Garcia’s words:
In the course, students are taught about things like the design process, the importance of knowing how to interact with people of different backgrounds, the importance of being ethical, and much more.
You can watch the video of their drone below: