Student Haneul CHOI (Architecture / Mechanical Engineering) gave a special lecture about her academic experience in the presentation session hosted by the Student Success Center. She chose her major because she became interested in the field of engineering during her high school years. Before coming to university, all she knew about engineering was “Iron Man”. The things that she encountered in university was totally different from what she imagined in high school. Since then, she decided to join extracurricular activities in school. The activities deepened her thoughts and knowledge. Based on this experience, she gave a special lecture about “learning engineering out of the chair”.
◈ Making smart car out of 3D printer
CHOI joined the smart car designing competition, where participants were required to build a smart car. Participants used coding for the automatic driving and created the frame using 3D printing technology. They were also provided with a chassis kit to make the mechanical device. The frame modeling was done by a program called “inventor”.
The processing time for 3D printing is determined by how detailed the design is planned out. 3D printing took at least 12 hours no matter how detailed it was set and there were many trouble in the process. But through the trial and error, she was able to learn the knowledge necessary to solve problems.
CHOI had to think about how to disperse the weight evenly and how to realize the modeling that she had designed in her thoughts. She was able to develop her knowledge during this process. Learning about 3D printing trained her how to think and work as an engineer.
◈ We-UP activity
WE-UP is a program that supports female engineering students. The smart car designing competition was also part of the WE-UP program. Therefore, all the team in the competition must have at least one female student. Students get to experience managing smart car factory inside the Research and Business Center in Natural Sciences Campus and the program hosts many activities for students to join. However, WE-UP program is not limited to female students; male students can join as well.
CHOI met teammates from diverse backgrounds during the WE-UP activities. They divided up the work efficiently and teammates in mechanical engineering worked on modeling while computer engineering teammates worked on programming. It was not easy to plan, organize and direct the work all by herself. She realized that trusting each other is the key to success in group activities.
◈ The main point of the special lecture
She wanted to emphasize in her presentation the merit of joining in extracurricular activities. The theories and grades in class are important but there are many things that could only be learned from extracurricular activities. She said that it is important to be part of a project with students from other disciplines. Many new ideas are brought up unlike in groups with similar majors.
“As a student with two majors, I think about a certain issue in different perspectives. When I graduate and start working in the field, I will meet colleagues from different culture and different interest. Understanding the difference and communicating efficiently with these colleagues will be most important. I believe that you can reduce the risk once you have an experience while you are still a student.”
CHOI said that there were many support available in the school. WE-UP and Student Success Center are good examples. She hopes that other students have a successful academic experience by making use of these facilities.