The Mfg4 student challenge is a middle and high school manufacturing competition. Teams comprised of three to six students and a teacher work with local manufacturers and become familiar with the products made and processes used. Student teams could select from two competition areas: "Lean and Green" in which student groups analyzed a process or manufacturing work cell and presented process improvements or "Reverse Engineering" in which the student groups were responsible for design and re-imagining an existing product.
The challenge, held during the recent Mfg4 event in Hartford, Conn., was sponsored by industry leader Sandvik Coromant, USA, the Society of Manufacturing Engineers Education Foundation (SME-EF), and the Connecticut Center for Advanced Technology (CCAT).
The competition drew entries from several states including Vermont, New York, New Hampshire and Massachusetts.
River Valley Technical Center, from Springfield, Vt., was the first place winner of a $1,000 award for the reverse engineering and refurbishment of an 1860 Pratt and Whitney engine lathe. The project included the complete disassembly and re-manufacture of more than 100 parts. The fully restored lathe will become part of the 150th anniversary Civil War exhibit at the American Precision Museum in Windsor, Vt. starting in July, 2012.
Second place, with a prize of $750, went to New Vision-Cecor at Orange-Ulster BOCES technical school from Ulster Country, N.Y, for their work on facility design. This project involved a plant layout to make material flow in the least wasteful way regarding product and employee travel distances.
Third place, with a prize of $500, went to Windham Regional Career Center in Hinsdale, N.H. for their work in rationalizing flow across a production floor.
Sandvik Coromants John Jacobsen, Kevin Mayer and JoAnn Mitchell joined judges from the SME membership and local industry to examine the entries.