Celebrating Our Donors: Annual Fund

Annual Fund

Join the more than 2,200 individuals each year who make an immediate impact where it is most needed. These alumni, students, parents, and friends realize that state support and tuition and fees cover the fundamentals of a UMass Amherst education. They know that an annual gift is leverage for excellence. Your annual gift to the college, a department, or program strengthens the College of Engineering and confirms and preserves the value of an engineering degree from UMass Amherst.

Frank Sup and colleagues in the Mechanical and Industrial Engineering (MIE) Department have lined up six sponsors for his Senior Capstone Design Course to support the MIE educational process and provide fascinating design projects for six of the 11 teams in the course. The projects range from optimizing solar arrays to creating a new energy-saving door for large, inflatable, U.S. Army tents. Sponsors donate $3,000 to the MIE department, of which $500 goes toward the materials that a team needs to create its prototype, and the remaining $2,500 supports the MIE Innovation Shop, where all the work for the senior course takes place.

Hyperion Systems LLC, an Amherst company which designs, manufactures, and markets an innovative (patent pending) photovoltaic system designed to keep farmland in production while generating solar energy, will continue its history of collaboration with UMass Amherst by sponsoring teams of students in the Mechanical and Industrial Engineering Department for their senior design capstone projects. “We at Hyperion Systems LLC are grateful that you are considering us to participate in both a capstone and senior engineering project in the upcoming year,” wrote Steve Daniel, the company’s vice president of business development and a 1981 graduate from the College of Engineering.

On June 7 and 8, the streamlined, three-wheel car built by the UMass Amherst Supermileage Vehicle (SMV) Team, which calls itself Zoom Mass, rolled smoothly through the Society of Automotive Engineers (SAE) Supermileage® competition in Marshall, Michigan with a car shell made of shrink wrap and an emergency engine getting a tightfisted 843 mpg and running mainly on true grit, improvisation, and elbow grease. “As usual, we ran into a number of technical difficulties, which included killing an engine, two batteries, and a starter motor,” says SMV faculty advisor Jonathan Rothstein of the Mechanical and Industrial Engineering Department, “but we persevered!”