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MconneX Event


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This special summer event for College of Engineering alumni invites our graduates to bring their child or grandchild back to campus for a day of fun and experiential learning. Through a series of workshops, children will explore the field of engineering and concepts of science.

This event is geared for children entering 5th-8th grade, and is offered as a chance for alumni to introduce their children to engineering concepts from a variety of disciplines and explore the Michigan Engineering campus.

Explore the world of engineering with your child or grandchild during a day of fun-filled experiments and tours.

Cost & Payment Info

Cost is $75 per family (one adult and one child) and includes 3 workshops, lunch for two, continental breakfast and snack, bus ride and tour, experiment supplies, meet and greet with the Solar Car team and parking. Registration is a 2 step process: 1) entering your information; 2) payment by check only. Make checks payable to “The Regents of the University of Michigan” and mail to: MconneX – Xplore Engineering Event; Attn.: Sandra Hines; 1458 Lurie Engineering Center; 1221 Beal Avenue; Ann Arbor, MI 48109-2102

Registration is on a first-come, first-serve basis and space is limited. Each child must attend with an accompanying adult. Workshops from nine departments are offered, with each attendee able to participate in three of the workshops. In addition, lunch and a continental breakfast will be provided, along with a tour of the Big House and Crisler Arena. After registration and payment are received, you will receive your personal itinerary, map and parking instructions for the event within 5 business days.

Registration is closed for 2013



  • 7:30 – 8:45: Registration and welcome with continental breakfast
  • 9:00 – 10:15: Class 1
  • 10:15 – 10:30: Walk Time
  • 10:30 – 11:45: Class 2
  • 11:45 – 1:00: Lunch at Pierpont and meet the U-M Solar Car team, who will bring their 2012 National Championship winning car, Quantum, to a meet and greet at lunch. Find out more about the Solar Car team and how you can "buy a cell" to help their efforts
  • 1:00 – 1:15: Walk Time
  • 1:15 – 2:30: Class 3
  • 2:30 – 3:00: Walk time to Lurie and snack
  • 3:00 – 5:00 pm: A bus ride to the Big House and back for a tour of the newly renovated Michigan Stadium and Crisler Arena



Workshops are offered on a first-come, first-served basis. During registration, participants will order the workshops in order of preference. Assignments, confirmations and itineraries will be emailed upon receipt of payment.


Have you ever cracked a bone?

Learn about the types of cells and proteins found in bones and their roles in bone strength. We’ll compress and bend bones under different conditions to discover how strong bones are, what can affect their strength, and how to strengthen your own!
Title: The strength and make up of bones | BME Lecturer III: Rachael Schmedlen | Department: Biomedical Engineering

It's a Small, Small, Small, Small, World

Explore the fascinating concepts of nanotechnology. How small is a nano? What happens when we shrink items by 10,000 times? Can you be shrunk? Come learn the answers to these questions and more.
Title: Exploring Nanotechnology | NNIN Education and User Outreach Coordinator: Brandon Lucas | Department: Electrical Engineering

Navigate the Robot Maize

Create an autonomous miniature robot that will navigate its own way through a complex maize. Learn how to program simple commands that will allow the robot to identify obstacles and determine its response. Put your ingenuity and cleverness to the test in a contest against other participants.
Title: Robot Intelligence - Maize Challenge | Professor: Edwin Olson | Department: Computer Science Engineering

How much will your bridge hold?

Create a bridge constructed of tongue depressors, bolts, nuts, rubber bands, and tape that will be tested for load capacity and quality of construction! Learn the principles used to design bridges and construct your own for testing.
Title: Building Bridges - Quality versus Capacity | Professor: Jason McCormick | Department: Civil and Environmental Engineering

Up, Up and Away!

Powering and building rockets continuously improves, but the basic principles have long been the same. Design your own launchers and straw rockets and experience these basic principles. Troubleshoot and problem-solve to create the optimum rocket and launching system.
Title: Creating the Optimal Rocket and Launching System | Assoc. Chair: Mark Moldwin & PhD Student: Alex Bryan | Department: Atmospheric, Oceanic and Space Sciences

Manufacturing challenge: Taking it to the max!

Put on your problem solving and creativity hats and take part in the manufacturing assembly challenge! Work together with your team to figure out how to produce more high quality products in the shortest time. Learn principles of industrial and operations engineering to design the best possible process.
Title: Manufacturing Challenge | PhD Students: Julie Prinet, Brandon Pitts & Nadine Moacdieh| Department: Industrial and Operations Engineering

Can bacteria actually be good?

Bacteria provides many health and environmental benefits. First, we’ll identify places bacteria can be found and explore how bacteria can make our world a cleaner and healthier place. Then we'll design an experiment to test questions you have about bacteria and learn how environmental engineers work with bacteria to improve the environment and the public health.
Title: Bacteria & Environmental Health - Good vs. Bad | PhD Student: Nadine Kotlarz | Department: Environmental Engineering

The world of underwater vehicles

Alter the design of your underwater vehicle and test the effect these changes have on the performance and maneuverability of your submarine in the Lurie Pool. Title: Submarine & Ship Design Experiments | Lecturer: Laura Alford | Department: Naval Architecture & Marine Engineering

Can you walk on or bounce a fluid?

Find out as we learn about viscosity, shear, and flow and explore the unique properties of everyday fluids. We will demonstrate and explore the different types of fluids and show you how to walk across a pool of a non-Newtonian fluid.
Title: Everyday Chemical Engineering | Outreach Coordinator: Lianette Rivera | Department: Chemical Engineering