Mercer students win awards at engineering conference’s poster competition

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Five students stand together and hold their awards.
From left, Madison Holloway, Travis White Jr., Gunhee Lee, Danielle Dailey and Hannah Higgins hold their awards from the student poster competition at the American Society for Engineering Education Southeastern Section conference. Photo courtesy Dr. Natalia Cardelino

Mercer University School of Engineering students won several awards for their posters during the annual American Society for Engineering Education Southeastern Section (ASEE-SE) conference. The event was held March 13 at George Mason University in Arlington, Virginia. 

The student poster competition is the only event at the conference where undergraduate students can present their technical research, and the posters are not required to have engineering education-related content. Participants are judged on their extended abstract, poster, presentation, and the subject matter and scientific merit of their projects. Mercer students entered 14 posters and gave three presentations during the event.  

“Students not only get a chance to showcase the amazing engineering research they are conducting, but they also have the opportunity to meet students from other universities and see what research they are doing as well,” said Dr. Natalia Cardelino, assistant professor of engineering. “The thing I was most impressed by with our students is how well they were able to clearly describe the research they did, even to people outside their disciplines.” 

Senior Danielle Dailey, an industrial engineering major, won first place in the individual undergraduate division and best overall student poster for her poster “Resilience of Mid-Sized Cities.” Working under Assistant Professor of Civil Engineering Dr. Kleio Avrithi, she studied Hurricane Matthew’s impact in Lumberton, North Carolina, in 2016 and Tropical Storm Alberto’s impact on Macon in 1994 and used the data collected to update a model for evaluating infrastructure resilience.

Second place in the individual undergraduate division went to sophomore Hannah Higgins, a biomedical engineering major, for her poster “The Characteristics and Uses of Selective Laser Sintering (SLS) in the Production of a Printed Airway Model.” Higgins has been working to create a 3D-printed model that accurately mimics the humid and porous environment of the human airway. For the competition, she focused on how she proved that SLS printing and the material FlexaGrey thermoplastic polyurethane elastomer could allow for an absorbent 3D-printed model. 

Junior Gunhee Lee, a biomedical engineering major, and sophomore Travis White Jr., a mechanical engineering major, won second place in the upper division team category for their poster “Computational Analysis of Obstructive Sleep Apnea Airways.” Their project looked at how fluid flows in human airways may influence or induce sleep apnea conditions, and they presented their initial findings from computational fluid dynamics during the conference. 

Senior Madison Holloway, a biomedical engineering major; sophomore Sara Daugherty, an electrical engineering major; and Sarah Spalding, a 2022 biomedical engineering graduate, won third place in the upper division team category for their poster “E-Cigarette and Traditional Cigarette Aerosol Deposition in Human Airways.” Dr. Sinjae Hyun, professor and chair of biomedical engineering, served as the faculty adviser for both upper division teams.

A group of nearly 20 Mercer students huddle together for a photo.
Mercer students who participated in the American Society for Engineering Education Southeastern Section conference are pictured. Photo courtesy Dr. Natalia Cardelino