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About TSGC

ABOUT THE DESIGN CHALLENGE

Getting Started

DESIGN TEAMS

DESIGN TEAM NOTEBOOK

DESIGN TOPICS

GUIDELINES

TIMELINE & DEADLINES

 

 

 

PROGRAM CONTACTS

Dr. Tim Urban
designchallenge@tsgc.utexas.edu

voice: 512-471-0967
fax: 512-471-3585

3925 West Braker Lane, Suite 200
Austin, Texas 78759

toll-free switchboard:
1-800-248-8752

 

Talia Jurgens
designchallenge@tsgc.utexas.edu

voice: 512-471-8271
fax: 512-471-3585

3925 West Braker Lane, Suite 200
Austin, Texas 78759

toll-free switchboard:
1-800-248-8752

 

 

ABOUT THE DESIGN CHALLENGE

WHAT IS THE TSGC DESIGN CHALLENGE?

The information below offers prospective teams an overview of the requirements for each Level and the Option Areas. They are not intended to serve as the "handbook" for participation. Guidelines that address requirements in full are provided as downloadable pdf files in the Design Team Notebook.

  • BASE LEVEL - Completion and submission of the Design Brief is required to secure a spot for your team. Participation is not competitive in a traditional sense, but is first-come/first-served pending adequate merit. Some restrictions and considerations will apply when determining final participating teams. Late entries may be considered pending funding and space available.

  • LEVELS 1, 2, and 3 are monthly milestones that help the team set individual completion goals and earn project funding. Successfully meeting all requirements set for LEVEL 1, 2 and 3 is considered "completing the Design Challenge" and qualifies the team to receive all applicable incentives and awards.

  • OPTION AREAS are not required milestones, but may be incorporated by the team at any time during the semester to bring dimension and new experiences to participation and to earn additional team funding.

BASE LEVEL

SEMESTER I TEAMS - Submit a Design Brief

SEMESTER II TEAMS - Submit a Continuation Plan through the Design Brief form

TEAM RESPONSIBILITIES
  • Meet Criteria for Participation
  • Organize Team / Faculty Advisor
  • Review appropriate guidelines
  • Select a first-choice design topic and alternate
  • Submit Design Brief by the deadline
AWARD:
  • Acceptance to participate in DESIGN CHALLENGE.

 

LEVEL 1

SEMESTER I TEAMS - Submitting a formal Design Project Proposal

SEMESTER II TEAMS - Submit a Summary of Work-in-Progress [SOW]

TEAM RESPONSIBILITIES:
  • Submission of a Design Project Proposal/SOW
  • Including digital team photos (individual head shots and full team) and the team patch design
AWARD:
  • $200 (includes proposal, photos, patch design and team trivia page)

 

LEVEL 2

SEMESTER I TEAMS - Mid-term Report including summary of research and implementation of a method of determining the best design (down-selection)

SEMESTER II TEAMS - Mid-term Report including summary of how the design and model are being fine-tuned

TEAM RESPONSIBILITIES
  • Submit a mid-term report
AWARD:
  • $400 (mid-term)

 

LEVEL 3

SEMESTER I & II TEAMS - Showcase Presentation and Final Semester Report

TEAM RESPONSIBILITIES
  • Finalize all design-related activity
  • Submit a set of slides for the Showcase Presentation
  • Participate in Design Challenge Showcase
  • Submit a final written project report
AWARD:
  • $1000 including travel out of this amount (showcase, final report)

 

OPTION AREA 1: EDUCATION AND PUBLIC OUTREACH [EPO]

TEAM RESPONSIBILITIES
  • Present, demonstrate or display any STEM-related topic to an EPO audience, including K-12 appropriate activities, classroom tutoring, or participation in a science fair or open house.
  • Provide an Outreach Report as an appendix to any required Level report that describes the activity pursued and documents it in photos
AWARD:
  • $200.00

 

OPTION AREA 2: PROJECT INTERNET PRESENCE [PIP]

TEAM RESPONSIBILITIES

Design and Create a Team/Project Internet Presence via (2) two of the following four vehicles

  • Design/create/maintain an internet presence via two (2) project methods:
    • Website, Facebook, Twitter, Wikipedia article, other by approval

AWARD:
  • $200.00

 

TEAM TRAVEL GRANT - Provides each team with a limited amount of funding to support participation in the TSGC Design Challenge Showcase held at the end of each semester and for other travel outside the classroom to supplement the design experience.

TEAM RESPONSIBILITIES
  • Engage in team travel for the purpose of participating in the Design Challenge Showcase or supplementing the design experience via field trip, site visit, meeting presentation, career exploration, or outreach.
  • Provide a Team Travel and Expense Report to document team travel and associated expenses. Include a narrative description of the event and include photos as documentation.
AWARD:
  • Standard - up to $400.00
  • Long-Distance - contact program coordinators for eligibility

 

AWARDS, RECOGNITIONS AND BENEFITS
Participation can be extra work - for everyone involved - so what's the benefit?
INDIVIDUAL TEAM MEMBERS
  • Real-world design experience
  • Certificate of participation
  • Commemorative Posters and Pins
  • Insight into internship, coop and employment opportunities within NASA, JSC and its contractor community
  • Added resume value
  • Scholarship opportunities
  • Put classroom theory into practice
  • Comments from previous participants
    • As a team leader, I learned a lot from this program. Also, it was the first time to "propose" and "design" a project, so that was new too. Overall, it was great to get to go through what engineering is all about.
    • This whole project has been amazing. This all started as a class project and we initially debated whether participation was worth it due to the paperwork demands, but it has been totally worth it! The trips we went on were amazing. I never expected anything this cool.
    • The program had a huge impact on my way of thinking and prospective of myself.

DESIGN TEAM
  • Each team is eligible to receive rewards up to the maximum specified for each Level and Option Area
  • Maximum project earnings total $1,300 for satisfactory completion of all Levels, Option Areas, and Travel Grant
  • Comments from previous participants
    • The most enjoyable aspect in participating in the DESIGN CHALLENGE was the experience it gave the entire team when working with our NASA mentor and TSGC to accomplish the goals of the project. It allowed the team to experience a real-world engineering environment by working in conjunction with different organizations. Not that many students at our university get an opportunity to work with NASA and TSGC.

FACULTY ADVISORS & TEAM MENTORS RECEIVE:
  • An opportunity to lead a team of students through a real-world design experience
  • Opportunities for higher level teaming between faculty and mentors
  • Funding to supplement design course
  • Comments from previous participants
    • A great experience for the students . . . gaining discipline in organization, working in team environment, making a presentation before a professional audience!
    • There are two big benefits to participation. The first is in having an external customer for the design project. This brings the project up to a different level than if the students were "just doing it for the class" and for the local professors. The second benefit is the external motivation of the levels and the funding associated with each. This "carrot" is very helpful in keeping the motivation level up throughout the year. It seems to be effective at moving the project along. Also, the peer pressure of not wanting to embarrass themselves at the Showcase has some benefit. The impact is that the professor doesn't have to hold grades over the students' heads all the time to keep them working allowing him/her to concentrate more on the project itself.
DEPARTMENTAL SPONSORS RECEIVE
  • Departmental and University recognition from NASA's TSGC
  • Display item which commemorates both the institution and team's participation in the TSGC DESIGN CHALLENGE
  • Comments from previous participants
    • On behalf of the entire Engineering program, I would like to thank TSGC for all of the hard work in support of our students. The classroom materials received will be used in courses beyond our beginning Engineering course and will enhance the existing tools that our students have to work with. Thanks again for your support.