NOVEMBER 21, 2022 — AMAS Engineering, one of 98 student-led design teams, won the top prize at the UTSA Fall 2022 Tech Symposium. The challenge, hosted Friday by the UTSA Makerspace and the Margie and Bill Klesse College of Engineering and Integrated Design, showcased innovative student projects and research across multiple engineering disciplines.
AMAS Engineering was formed by mechanical engineering seniors Matthew Juarez, Adalicia Scimia, Alan Guerra and Sarah Sultan. The team collaborated with Dr. Jeffrey Ebin, founder and director of Innovation Ebcore, to develop Ebin’s idea of athrombic pants.
The pants help prevent dangerous blood clots by providing compression to a person’s legs and promoting blood flow. Additionally, the innovation has the potential to catch a blood clot in its early stages by monitoring the temperature of the lower body.
Over the course of the design period, the students made the device more mobile and aesthetically appealing than current methods of treatment.
“These types of projects are an enormous boom to our students and their future,” said R. Lyle Hood, an assistant professor in the UTSA Department of Mechanical Engineering and sponsor of the team.
As previously reported by UTSA Today, the project was personal for Juarez, whose grandmother was diagnosed with deep vein thrombosis.
“Having the ability to use my engineering skills to develop a medical device that could potentially help many people like my grandma has kept my interest in the field,” Juarez said.
The student team will receive a $4,000 cash prize for its first-place finish.
Second place at the UTSA Tech Symposium was awarded to Trust Issues for its project, Zero Trust: New Pillars in Cybersecurity, a project sponsored by Dell. The students, Jonathan Hernandez, Gabriella Forbis, Van Ngo and Mason Conkel, developed a proof of concept for use authentication, device management, network and environment monitoring, visibility and analytics. The students will receive a $3,000 cash prize.
Third place went to MEC Engineering. Their project consisted of developing plans, specifications and construction estimates for a laundromat building structure following City of San Antonio requirements. The students, Emily Martinez, Claire Navarro, Marla Lizarraga, Mariah Carrales and Charrisa Scott, will receive a $2,000 cash prize.
Three Design II teams also received awards of excellence at the symposium. The winners included:
Three Design I teams were also recognized as overall winners for their first-semester projects:
Held semi-annually, the UTSA Tech Symposium is the capstone project of the Klesse College’s engineering and integrated design programs. The hands-on learning opportunity enables students to apply the knowledge and skills they have accumulated throughout their undergraduate studies to design, develop and implement innovative and relevant engineering products. It also provides students with an opportunity to network with industry leaders and differentiate themselves from students graduating from competing universities.
The Klesse College’s senior design teams work together over the course of two semesters, including the time over the mid-semester break. A team of four will log somewhere between 1,600 and 2,000 person-hours (approximately 200 to 250 hours per person per semester over two semesters) to complete their projects.
Some alumni have gone on to develop their innovations into start-up companies following graduation.
What sets the winners of the Symposium apart is their ability to come up with a compelling presentation to explain their solution to a real-world problem, said JoAnn Browning, dean of the Klesse College.
“It’s about tackling a problem in a way that is unique, showing how that solution can impact humanity,” Browning said. “But the presentation component is also very important.”
She says the experience teaches students to present their solutions to society’s big challenges.
“You can have the best project in the world, but you have to be able to present that project in a way that is compelling, which is what these students are doing today,” Browning said.
Pape-Dawson Engineers, Dell Technologies and Caterpillar supported the Fall 2022 Tech Symposium.
The six cash prizes were generously funded by George Karutz and Bill Balthrope.
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