Mollendorf The proposed research is in the Undergraduate Design Projects Program category, and requests support for undergraduate student engineers to provide prototype "custom designed" devices and software to aid persons with disabilities. The primary goal is to provide meaningful design experiences for the engineering student that will directly aid a specific disabled individual. A formal program is in place at SUNY Buffalo which will ensure satisfactory progress is attained on these projects. A group of students and the investigators will work with a collaborating agency and individuals on these projects. Seventy-five projects are planned during the five year duration of this award, and a written report on the completed projects will be submitted for an annual publication. Once completed, each project will be given to the person for whom it is designed. The hope is that this "real world" experience will give engineering students a sense of purpose and pride, help engineering schools serve the community, attract new students into engineering, and raise student interest in graduate education.
This type of undertaking is important since it provides a meaningful experience for engineering students as part of their undergraduate design requirements, and will also benefit a population where customization is often needed for rehabilitation devices.