Eaton Sponsors Western Michigan University Student Race Car Teams To Help Develop Engineering and Technical Skills - Engine Builder Magazine
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Eaton Sponsors Western Michigan University Student Race Car Teams To Help Develop Engineering and Technical Skills


Diversified industrial manufacturer Eaton
announced that it has provided $8,000 to Western Michigan University (WMU) in
support of three student engineering teams. Several
engineers from Eaton’s Galesburg and Marshall, Mich., facilities are serving as
mentors, providing technical and engineering support to the WMU teams from its
College of Engineering and Applied Sciences.

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Students also will have access to
Eaton’s proving grounds in Marshall. WMU’s Baja and Formula teams are
displaying their vehicles at the SAE World Congress & Exhibition in
Detroit, Michigan (April 16-18).

“These programs
provide students with excellent hands-on experience in developing, building and
racing high-tech vehicles, as well as an opportunity to learn from engineering
experts,” said Rick Rachner, who leads WMU’s Development and Alumni Relations
activities for the engineering college. “We are very grateful for the support
and commitment of corporations such as Eaton that make it all possible.”


Eaton has a
long and successful relationship with WMU’s engineering and business colleges.
This includes sponsoring engineering senior design projects, providing
scholarships to marketing students, various internship programs and
participating in WMU’s Engineering Career Day. Throughout the years, many WMU graduates
have gone on to work for Eaton.

“It is part of
Eaton’s culture to give back and support the local communities where we live
and work,” said Michael O’Neill, who is the company’s hybrid supply chain
manager and coordinates Eaton’s involvement in the WMU programs.


“These projects
are a great way for young engineering students to apply their newly acquired
skills and solve real problems,” added Craig Sell, director of engineering for
Eaton’s Vehicle Group. “At the same time, it allows Eaton to work with the next
generation of engineers.”

With the help
of Eaton’s sponsorship, WMU students are competing in three programs:

• The Sunseeker
solar race team is developing a solar-powered vehicle for the American Solar
Challenge, which is run on highways across the U.S. As one of only a handful of
engineering schools in North America to have participated in every race since
the biennial challenge was started in 1989, WMU has finished in the top 10 four
times and has captured several post-race best design awards.


• Formula SAE
challenges colleges and universities around the world to design and build
small-scale, Formula One-style cars. WMU has fielded a team for the past seven
years in the Michigan portion of the series.

• SAE Baja
competitions test engineering and design capabilities as students build and
compete in small, off-road vehicles across North America.

Student Chapter provides opportunities for students interested in automotive
engineering to apply their knowledge and gain practical skills. WMU teams have
finished first in the Detroit Section Student Exhibit Competition at the SAE
World Congress in three of the last five years, and WMU was named an
outstanding collegiate chapter by SAE International.


Eaton is a
diversified power management company providing energy-efficient solutions that
help our customers effectively manage electrical, hydraulic and mechanical
power. A global technology leader, Eaton acquired Cooper Industries plc in
November 2012. The 2012 revenue of the combined companies was $21.8 billion on
a pro forma basis. Eaton has approximately 103,000 employees and sells
products to customers in more than 175 countries. For more information,

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