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Engineering Prototyping

2018 Francis College of Engineering Prototyping Competition

Ideas Are Great, But We Want You To Build It!

This program is supported by the Francis College of Engineering and the DifferenceMaker program.

 The Competition

Do you have a great idea? Are you wondering if it can be turned into a real product that customers would buy and use? If so, then this is for you: a competition to push you to think about an idea and bring it to life. Welcome to the 2018 Francis College of Engineering Prototyping Competition!

What is the difference between this competition and other innovation and entrepreneurship competitions on campus? This competition is more than just generating an idea; it is about generating a product - whether it is a mechanical/electrical device, a software application, or an integrated system. After all, ideas are great but we want you to build it! We will provide the resources to make it happen, so you can make a difference!


Applicants must be students (graduate or undergraduate) at UMass Lowell and at least one team member must be from the Francis College of Engineering. Students are encouraged to form interdisciplinary teams with all team members taking part in developing the Proposal and Prototype. Also, teams should identify a faculty advisor from Engineering.

 Important Dates

  • Registration Opens - September 24, 2018
  • Registration Deadline - October 24, 2018 at 5 p.m.
  • Mandatory Workshop for all Semi-finalist Teams - November 6, 2018 from 5:30 - 7 p.m., in the Makerspace, Falmouth Room 102
  • Executive Summary Due - November 13, 2018 at 5 p.m.
  • Final Competition Day - December 6, 2018 from 3-9 p.m. (Saab Center, ETIC Atrium, North Campus)

 Registration / Application and Deadlines

  • Create a team using the TeamMaker platform.
  • After you have created a team, apply to the College Competition under "Manage" in the TeamMaker platform.
  • Once your application is approved, then you can submit an executive summary via the TeamMaker platform.
  • A Poster (use this template) and a Prototype are required to be displayed on the night of the Competition.
  • A mandatory workshop is required for semi-finalist teams - November 6, 2018 from 5:30, 7 p.m., in the Makerspace, Falmouth Room 102
  • Engineering students can send an email to: to set up an appointment to print their poster.
  • Questions? Please email: Kelly Guy


Executive summaries will be submitted online in the TeamMaker platform. Teams submitting plans past the deadline will not be included in the Competition.

Available Resources

Teams that submit a proposal by the deadline are eligible to submit receipts of expenses incurred in their prototype design. A maximum of $100 will be reimbursed, with valid expenses including material costs, equipment rental, etc. Note that student teams must approach Engineering faculty and/or technical staff for the use of laboratory facilities (if necessary) in their designs and prototyping. Additionally, all registered teams will be invited to attend DifferenceMaker events during the semester to learn relevant skills and techniques, from idea generation to writing a business plan.


  • $2,500 award for 1st place team
  • $1,500 award for 2nd place team
  • $1,000 award for 3rd place team
  • $500 award for the people's choice award (crowd voting)
  • New this year! $1,500 award for the Best Biomedical Device, sponsored by Professor McCarthy


 2017 Winners

  • The First Place Award of $1,000 went to Handy Bandages, which is an inexpensive 'sock' that goes over the arm or leg while the patient is waiting for care. This helps to shield the wound from airborne pathogens in a hospital waiting room.
  • Team: Jennifer Schultz, Biomedical Engineering, Freshman; Cameron Albert, Biomedical Engineering, Freshman; Jayden Hairston, Biomedical Engineering, Freshman
  • Graduate Level Winner Award of $1,000 went to CareerHawk, which makes it easier for students to find a job on campus and helps professors find student assistants easier.
  • Team: Jingchuan Zhou, MS Computer Science; Lina Wu, MS Computer Engineering; Ruizhe Du, BSE Electrical Engineering, Senior; Yongdae Kwon, BBA Business Administration, Senior
  • The Second Place Award of $750 went to Pillzio, which leverages the power of Amazon's Alexa Voice Assistant, and allows you to interact with your medications like never before.
  • Team: Jooseppi Luna, Mechanical Engineering, Junior; Dave Machado, Computer Science, Senior; Darrien Glasser, Computer Science, Senior; Joshua Hassler, Computer Science, Junior
  • The Third Place Award of $500 went to Pic N’ Paint, a device that accurately reproduces any color (input through a camera) using several CNC axis to dispense the correct ratios of cyan, magenta, yellow and black paint into a single container.
  • Team: Romer Sullivan, Mechanical Engineering, Freshman; Joshua O’Neil, Mechanical Engineering, Freshman; Kemper Hopwood, Mechanical Engineering, Freshman; Mathew Minichiello, Mechanical Engineering, Freshman; Timoth Marcotte, Mechanical Engineering, Sophomore
  • People's Choice Award of $250 went to Team Water Challenge, which aims to develop an effective lead removal device for water distribution system.
  • Team: Arsalan Khalid, PhD Civil and Environmental Engineering

Thank you to the 2017 judges!