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EPICS @ UNM

For Students: this opportunity is available to Juniors and Seniors, as well as Graduate students of ANY MAJOR within the School of Engineering.

For Community Partners: projects with a focus in ANY Engineering and Computing fields are encouraged.

Aim

The University of New Mexico’s School of Engineering to launch an EPICs program at UNM in the Fall 2020 semester. As we continue to grow the program, students are given the opportunity to engage with research from the inception of an idea through the execution of the design.

What is an EPICS program?

Download program flyer

Engineering Projects In Community Service (EPICS) is a nationally award-winning program founded at Purdue University in 1995. EPICS is an academic program where teams of students partner with community organizations to solve real world problems; to implement service-learning design projects to help address human, community, and environmental needs.
 
UNM’s program mirrors that of the EPICS program at Purdue University, while adjusting for local culture, student population, and regional needs. The program will utilize both the community partners, as well as the WHY lab. Additionally, the EPICS program will tie closely to Peace Engineering and various departmental Senior Deign courses, either in concept and aim, or in connection with a Minor study or capstone courses, respectively.

Additionally, UNM is working closed with Purdue to join their program consortium.

More information:

  • All options are for School of Engineering Junior and Senior students already admitted into their major (vs pre-majors), as well as graduate students. Students enroll EPICS @ UNM (ENG 495: ST: EPICS, CRN 56494 [CS499 with the assigned faculty sponsor for CS students]; unless otherwise directed by the program coordinator) for 3 credits for the given semester (~9 - 10 hours per week), rather than a paid position. Projects are open to students of ANY School of Engineering major (with the understanding that projects are Engineering and Computing focused), and students self-select their top engagement options based on Community Partner provided project descriptions.
  • Projects should solve real problems and span the complete design cycle (problem identification, development and conceptual design, detailed design, production, service or maintenance, and retirement, when possible and appropriate). Additionally, projects should be developed to fit within a 1 semester commitment. 
  • The main interactions will be between the student and community partner, with support from the assigned faculty sponsors.
  • All involved parties (student, faculty, Community Partner) are expected to follow the program as laid out in the EPICS @ UNM - ENG 495 Syllabus

 

 

All engagement options are geared towards students already admitted into their major program or who are eligible for upper division courses. For Engineering and Computing students who are earlier in the academic careers, we encourage you to join our  Student Research Experience Program

Students:
  • Give back to the community and earn credit at the same time!
  • Develop technical and professional skills
    • Teamwork
    • Leadership
    • Project management
    • Interpersonal communication
    • Develop customer-awareness
    • Gain understanding of ethical, economic, & legal issues
  • Experiences the entire design/life-cycle
  • Move beyond theory and the classroom
  • Be part of a multidisciplinary team
  • Engage in design in a real-world context
  • Have a positive impact on your community
  • Build your resume/Have something to talk about in interviews
Community Partners:
  • Increase awareness of what engineering is
  • Strengthen your community relations
  • Contribute to student growth and development
  • Receive project support
Sponsors: Sponsors help the EPICS teams to fund their projects and bring the projects to life. We are greatly appreciative to all sponsors and are always looking to engage more partners to help move our community forward.
  • Please complete THIS interest form.
  • Additional information for Potential Community Partners HERE
  • Contact Yadéeh Sawyer, Program Coordinator at epics@unm.edu or (505) 277-9151 with any questions.
  • More information:
    • Projects should solve real problems and span the complete design cycle (problem identification, development and conceptual design, detailed design, production, service or maintenance, and retirement, when possible and appropriate). Additionally, projects should be developed to fit within a 1 semester commitment. In the project descriptions, please include any skills or knowledge requirements so when students self-select projects, they know what is expected of them.
    • The main interactions will be between the student and community partner, with support from the assigned faculty sponsors. 
      • The broad project ideas are provided by the community partner, but the student should have direct involvement in the creative and development or the specific project, under both the guidance of the faculty sponsor and community partner.
      • Students should both deliver and receive clear communications on both expectations and progress, while given the autonomy to worth through the project.
      • Yes, the students are getting credit for the course, but they are not in it only for the credits, but mainly the experience. The best way to ensure this happens is both the student commits to the project, but also gains real-world experience in project design and development. The hour requirement of 9 – 10 hours a week accounts for the need for time to process and collaborate ideas, as well as get guidance on portions they need it. If the projects were just for students to accomplish a list of tasks or come in to the project mid-stream or leave before they can potentially see it through (which we know some things are out of our control and not all projects can be completed within the semester, but that should be the goal), then it would not be incorporated within EPICS, but rather our Student Research Experience Program or one of our 2 internship programs.
    • All involved parties (student, faculty, Community Partner) are expected to follow the program as laid out in the EPICS @ UNM - ENG 495 Syllabus
    • All participants (students, faculty, and community partner) are encouraged to lay out clear expectations from each of their perspectives and needs so that all parties are on the same page moving forward and know what is expected of their involvement. This can include, but is not limited to, routine update of pending tasks and a semi-regular reflection on progress in the scope of the broader project. The program does not provide these details beyond the requirements listed in the Syllabus, as the details vary greatly across teams. If any party needs clarification or adjustment, they must state that, as the key to communication is communicating our needs.
If you would like to be part of the EPICS @ UNM, please complete THIS interest form.  Prior to the start of the semester, the program coordinator will reach out to both students and faculty sponsors with a form to select (rank) the preferred projects and will assign matches within the first week of the semester. See a list of the current community partners and programs HERE.
  • Students MUST look over the faculty within their department and identify 3 potential faculty sponsors.
  • Students should NOT directly reach out to selected faculty, but indicate their selections in the interest form for the program coordinator to reach out to faculty with additional expectations and requirements. 
Whether or not the EPICS course will count towards your degree progress should be discussed with your major advisor. In most cases, EPICS @ UNM (ENG 495: ST: EPICS, CRN 56494[CS499 with the assigned faculty sponsor for CS students]; unless otherwise directed by the program coordinator) counts as a Tech Elective within your degree requirements. The course is geared towards students already admitted into their major program or who are eligible for upper division courses. For Engineering and Computing students who are earlier in the academic careers, we encourage you to join our Student Research Experience Program or our internship programs. All options are for full majors and graduate students (vs pre-majors). 
More Info:
  • Students are expected to enroll in 3 credits for the given semester (~9 - 10 hours per week), rather than a paid position. Projects are open to students of ANY School of Engineering major (with the understanding that projects are Engineering and Computing focused), and students self-select their top engagement options based on Community Partner provided project descriptions.
    • Please be very cognizant of the details in the descriptions so you do not select a project that is outside of your skill set. 
  • The main interactions will be between the student and community partner, with support from the assigned faculty sponsors. 
    • The broad project ideas are provided by the community partner, but the student should have direct involvement in the creative and development or the specific project, under both the guidance of the faculty sponsor and community partner.
    • Students should both deliver and receive clear communications on both expectations and progress, while given the autonomy to worth through the project.
    • Yes, the students are getting credit for the course, but they are not in it only for the credits, but mainly the experience. The best way to ensure this happens is both the student commits to the project, but also gains real-world experience in project design and development. The hour requirement of 9 – 10 hours a week accounts for the need for time to process and collaborate ideas, as well as get guidance on portions they need it. If the projects were just for students to accomplish a list of tasks or come in to the project mid-stream or leave before they can potentially see it through (which we know some things are out of our control and not all projects can be completed within the semester, but that should be the goal), then it would not be incorporated within EPICS, but rather our Student Research Experience Program or one of our 2 internship programs.
  • All involved parties (student, faculty, Community Partner) are expected to follow the program as laid out in the EPICS @ UNM - ENG 495 Syllabus
  • All participants (students, faculty, and community partner) are encouraged to lay out clear expectations from each of their perspectives and needs so that all parties are on the same page moving forward and know what is expected of their involvement. This can include, but is not limited to, routine update of pending tasks and a semi-regular reflection on progress in the scope of the broader project. The program does not provide these details beyond the requirements listed in the Syllabus, as the details vary greatly across teams. If any party needs clarification or adjustment, they must state that, as the key to communication is communicating our needs.
Have questions? Contact Yadéeh Sawyer, Program Coordinator at epics@unm.edu or (505) 277-9151.
  • Prior to the start of the semester, the program coordinator will reach out to both students and faculty sponsors with a form to select (rank) the preferred projects and will assign matches within the first week of the semester. See a list of the current community partners and programs HERE.
  • In most cases, EPICS @ UNM (ENG 495: ST: EPICS, CRN 56494 [CS499 with the assigned faculty sponsor for CS students]; unless otherwise directed by the program coordinator) counts as a Tech Elective within the students degree requirements, but students are encouraged to confirm this with their academic advisor.
  • The course is geared towards students already admitted into their major program or who are eligible for upper division courses. For Engineering and Computing students who are earlier in the academic careers, we encourage them to join our Student Research Experience Program or our internship programs. All options are for full majors and graduate students (vs pre-majors). 
  • Students are expected to enroll in 3 credits for the given semester (~9 - 10 hours per week), rather than a paid position. Projects are open to students of ANY School of Engineering major (with the understanding that projects are Engineering and Computing focused).
  • Students self-select their top engagement options based on Community Partner provided project descriptions. Faculty sponsors select with projects they are comfortable supporting.
    • For both students and faculty sponsors, please be very cognizant of the details in the descriptions so you do not select a project that is outside of your skill set. 
  • The main interactions will be between the student and community partner, with support from the assigned faculty sponsors. 
    • The broad project ideas are provided by the community partner, but the student should have direct involvement in the creative and development or the specific project, under both the guidance of the faculty sponsor and community partner.
    • Students should both deliver and receive clear communications on both expectations and progress, while given the autonomy to worth through the project.
    • Yes, the students are getting credit for the course, but they are not in it only for the credits, but mainly the experience. The best way to ensure this happens is both the student commits to the project, but also gains real-world experience in project design and development. The hour requirement of 9 – 10 hours a week accounts for the need for time to process and collaborate ideas, as well as get guidance on portions they need it. If the projects were just for students to accomplish a list of tasks or come in to the project mid-stream or leave before they can potentially see it through (which we know some things are out of our control and not all projects can be completed within the semester, but that should be the goal), then it would not be incorporated within EPICS, but rather our Student Research Experience Program or one of our 2 internship programs.
  • All involved parties (student, faculty, Community Partner) are expected to follow the program as laid out in the EPICS @ UNM - ENG 495 Syllabus
  • All participants (students, faculty, and community partner) are encouraged to lay out clear expectations from each of their perspectives and needs so that all parties are on the same page moving forward and know what is expected of their involvement. This can include, but is not limited to, routine update of pending tasks and a semi-regular reflection on progress in the scope of the broader project. The program does not provide these details beyond the requirements listed in the Syllabus, as the details vary greatly across teams. If any party needs clarification or adjustment, they must state that, as the key to communication is communicating our needs.
Have questions? Contact Yadéeh Sawyer, Program Coordinator at epics@unm.edu or (505) 277-9151.
EPICS depends on the support of corporations, foundations, institutions, and friends of EPICS at UNM to carry out its programs. Your involvement can be either in the form of financial support (please see information below) and/or  leadership support at the local program level.

Financial Support/Donations help operation and development of existing EPICS at UNM programs through:
  • Team expenses: Gift funds may be used to acquire the hardware, software, or other materials that must be purchased for the construction and deployment of the team's prototypes.
  • Student travel: These funds may be used to cover the cost of student travel between EPICS sites or to cover the student travel expenses associated with long distance meetings for a particular project. The programmatic support will provide the necessary funds to ensure that students can travel to areas related to their projects as the need arises.
  • Student Presentation Opportunities: Students are often the best spokespersons for both the EPICS program and the projects they are working on. However, there are often costs associated in preparing the professional level presentations expected for these events such as display boards and posters and general handout materials. Additionally, students can be given more chances to advance their professional presentation skills and network with members of strategic audiences.
  • Laboratory Supplies and Materials: Depending on the project, EPICS at UNM may be responsible for providing laboratory space and the basic infrastructure required for students to design, develop, and test their prototypes. Gift funds can assist in supplying the materials students need to perform their essential team functions.

The contributions of all EPICS at UNM sponsors will be cited on the EPICS at UNM Web site, and your company/foundation's name will be listed as the sponsor on all materials associated with the sponsored projects. For more information about financially supporting the EPICS at UNM Program please contact Yadéeh Sawyer, Program Coordinator at epics@unm.edu or (505) 277-9151 to express an interest and she will guide you from there.