YORKVILLE, N.Y. — As renovations were implemented at the Marcy campus of Suny Polytechnic Institute, the college’s engineering clubs were unclear of the fate of their 2017 season for extra curriculum programs and competitions. During “Manufacturing Day” at Suny Poly, Max Cohen, Director of Hospitality Marketing for Meyda Lighting, met several engineering students who expressed concern for the lack of a location to build their projects. Suny Poly is currently upgrading the machine shop and labs in Donovan Hall at the Marcy Campus and removed the machines, placing them in storage and leaving club members and other students without a place to work on their application projects, cap stone projects, and club competition projects. The Baja and Bridge Builders needed a place to fabricate their car and weight bearing bridge projects.
When he learned about the dilemma, Cohen offered his family-owned Meyda Lighting factory and state of the art equipment at no charge to the students and faculty of Suny Poly. Understanding the importance of the programs and the impact of American manufacturing, Cohen felt a responsibility to help the students and professors and support the local and professional communities. The ASCE Bridge Builders Competition is planned for April 20-21 at Syracuse University in Syracuse, New York and the SAE Baja Competition will run June 7-10 at Caterpillar Edwards Demonstration and Learning Center in Peoria, Illinois.
“Suny Poly engineering students needed a place where they could work on bridge building and off-road vehicles for their club competitions,” according to Cohen. “We have made space available to the students so they could use our factory for fabrication and assembly, and provided a support staff to teach the students how to work with our new laser cutter and other state of the art equipment. Students come to understand how our company provides a level of components that are unavailable elsewhere.”
Civil Engineering Technology students are working to build a bridge for their competition. The ASCE Student Chapter Bridge Builders Club is creating a model bridge that will be measured for deflection, structural integrity and other criteria, when the team faces off against other colleges and universities at the upcoming annual competition. In addition, mechanical engineer students are working on the Baja Project, which is a student competition organized by the Society of Automotive Engineers (SAE). The students design, fabricate and test an off-road vehicle (“buggy”) capable of withstanding a variety of physical obstacles courses during the SAE Stidemt Chapter Baja four-day event. Club members apply the skills, theory, design, and classroom education to the construct a project. Students gain vital understanding of theory and practical application in the implementation of their design and then compete with other college club’s project designs. Projects are scored and rated to stringent engineering rules and guidelines. Both clubs have competed for many years and are looking forward to competition.
“We don’t know what we would have done without Max and Meyda Lighting,” explained Walter Zarnoch, a well-respected Professor, Shop Facilitator and Mentor who inspires many students from the region. “Meyda is one of the major companies that is working hard to keep jobs in the Mohawk Valley and helping to fill good-paying engineering positions and other occupations. We thank Max and Meyda Lighting for investing in Suny Poly’s students’ future.”
Cohen is a big fan of Mike Rowe, who is an American television host and narrator known for his work on the Discovery Channel series “Dirty Jobs” and CNN series “Somebody’s Gotta Do It.” Max shares the ideas of Rowe, who is also a social activist of economic growth and job expansion, especially engaging the next generation with modern advanced technologies and forward thinking manufacturing techniques.
“American manufacturing has changed a great deal in recent years, and many companies like Meyda Tiffany offer good jobs that involve creativity, and use high tech equipment. Local manufacturers often tell me they would love to have more young people apply for jobs with them. This manufacture sharing partnership gives Suny Poly students the opportunity to work on projects at a local manufacturing facility they hopefully will consider working at some day. This program will give students exposure to one of our local high-tech manufacturers, while Meyda will have a chance to interest some young people in a future career there and at other high-tech companies,” said Assemblyman Anthony Brindisi of Utica, N.Y.
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