CAMAL and MEM Unite: Pioneering the Path to Success in Advanced Manufacturing

In an exciting collaboration between the Center for Additive Manufacturing and Logistics (CAMAL) and the Master of Engineering Management (MEM) Program, a groundbreaking initiative has emerged – The CAMAL Advanced Manufacturing Fellow Program. This partnership aims to give students a unique opportunity to enhance their skills, gain hands-on experience, and foster valuable industry connections. This month, the first two MEM students, Molly Li and Evan Raynor were selected for the program.

CAMAL is a world-class advanced manufacturing facility. “It made no sense to me for MEM to just be neighbors,” shared interim MEM director Brandon McConnell. CAMAL provides training, skills, experience and industry connections for MEM students with a concentration in advanced manufacturing. Partnering with Ola Harrysson (CAMAL director) and CAMAL, the Fellows Program is designed to leverage this association to its fullest,” said McConnell.

The Li and Raynor fellows will receive mentorship from CAMAL faculty, ensuring a comprehensive learning experience. Moreover, they will have access to world-class facilities to build and refine their advanced manufacturing skills.

Perspectives from MEM and Fellows

Brandon McConnell’s Vision

McConnell emphasized the significance of the collaboration between CAMAL and MEM. “For the right MEM students, CAMAL provides training, skills, experience, and industry connections,” he shared. The Fellows program is strategically designed to maximize the potential of this association.

Regarding the program’s impact on career prospects, McConnell shared the running joke at CAMAL: “Our students get jobs.” He pointed out that the industry highly seeks advanced manufacturing skills. The CAMAL Fellows, under the mentorship of Chris Rock, Manager for Outreach and Customer Support at CAMAL, will gain hands-on experience and emerge as attractive candidates for advanced manufacturing positions.

Molly Li headshot

Molly Li’s Adventure

Molly Li shared her motivation for joining the AM Fellow program. Inspired by the Chinese idiom, “Learning is just like sailing against the current; if you don’t advance, you will be driven back.” Li sees learning as an exciting opportunity to challenge herself. She expressed her eagerness to work hands-on with cutting-edge machines and the prospect of developing and testing new materials.

For Li, the program’s impact on her career is substantial. Acquiring expertise in additive and hybrid manufacturing places her at an advantage in the competitive engineering field. “The prospect of working hands-on with these machines, developing and testing new materials really excited me,” confided Li. “Not only because I get to ‘play’ with the cool machines, but also because I know the lessons and opportunities that this experience will provide me will be extremely valuable and is something I cannot get from taking classes alone.” The research experience gained in the CAMAL Lab provides technical expertise and enhances leadership and managerial skills, making her stand out in front of recruiters.

Evan Raynor’s Journey

Evan Raynor reflected on his choice to enroll in the AM Fellow program. “Ever since I began my graduate school career, I have longed for knowledge that will allow me to make a difference in the world,” said Raynor. The program’s exposure to advanced manufacturing methods aligns with his aspirations.

Raynor sees the program as instrumental in providing a greater understanding of technologies relevant to his future career as a manufacturing engineer. The hands-on experience with state-of-the-art technology at the CAMAL lab is viewed as invaluable for his professional development.

Looking Forward

As the CAMAL Advanced Manufacturing Fellow Program takes its first steps, it leaves an indelible mark on the journey of these inaugural fellows. As Evan Raynor aptly puts it, “The ability for students like myself to have an opportunity to utilize the advanced technologies of the CAMAL lab is incredible.” Indeed, this program opens doors to unparalleled experiences that will undoubtedly shape the future of these aspiring engineers.