Raven is committed to investing in STEM education, working with several universities to sponsor senior design projects. Read how students are growing from this partnership.
Northampton, MA --News Direct-- CNH Industrial
Raven, a CNH Industrial brand, is an active supporter of universities because it believes in helping students reach their full potential, particularly in fields related to Science, Technology, Engineering & Math (STEM). Each year, the company sponsors senior design projects at universities such as South Dakota School of Mines and South Dakota State University (SDSU) that have the potential to make big impacts for both the students and the agriculture industry.
“Raven-sponsored senior design projects are based upon what's happening within our organization,” Engineering Manager Shane Swedlund said. “The projects are intended to improve our systems and encourage collaboration between Raven team members and university students.”
Once a project is underway, full-time Raven team members serve as technical advisors for the students involved and at the end of the school year, students present to their professors and at competitions. Both SDSU and the School of Mines host an expo where students present the projects, and SDSU has a competition for students in engineering with judges and prizes. Students typically also present their projects at Raven to give more information and involve more team members in the project going forward.
Senior design projects show Raven's commitment to growth and they build connections between universities and the company. They also give Raven team members the opportunity to work with students who might become interns or full-time team members later.
Software Engineer Field Mitchell was a computer science major at the School of Mines before going to Raven, and he worked on a collision avoidance system for multiple autonomous farming vehicles as part of his senior design project. He was drawn to the project because it sounded challenging and there were a variety of routes that could lead their team to an optimal solution.
Field said: “This project helped me become a better engineer and a better team member. The best thing a new engineer can receive is guided experience; that is exactly what I got, and I was able to learn a lot from the guidance of my teammates and our sponsors. I improved as a problem solver, and I want to solve challenges more than ever.”
Raven Software Engineer Madeleine Price also worked on the collision avoidance algorithm when she was a computer science major at the School of Mines. She was familiar with Raven after interning there for two summers.
Madeleine said she knew that Raven is focused on solving big, impactful challenges, so she was excited to work on a problem with real-world application. She said her interactions with Raven before the project had been second-to-none, so she wanted to continue her involvement with the company.
Field and Madeleine both said that they felt Raven’s commitment to continuous improvement, and they felt valued by their technical advisors as they worked on the project.
Madeleine also said that she learned better collaboration, specifically through leveraging multiple people's strengths and working with stakeholders to fully understand the problem in order to find a solution. These are critical skills for engineers to learn.
She added: “Everyone that we worked with directly or reached out to for help and guidance was responsive, supportive, and had great ideas for improving our solution. There was a huge wealth of knowledge that we got to draw on as a team, which meant that not only did we learn a lot about algorithm development ourselves, but we got to apply it to create a better deliverable at the end of the class.”
Raven chooses to sponsor senior design projects each year because they are an investment in the future for the students, for STEM fields, and for the agriculture industry. Raven is committed to helping students work on projects with real-world applications that teach them skills for after graduation. The hours that students and Raven technical advisors spend working on projects allow them to push the company’s industry-leading innovations forward and encourage personal development.
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