Alum Morgan headlines Engineering Day; service projects, treats, fun pack schedule

Engineering Day activities will range from the whimsical to the creative to the academic this year, featuring a pair of Vanderbilt University alumni returning to discuss their experiences here.

Morris H. Morgan III (submitted)

The events will take place beginning at 11 a.m. Thursday, Nov. 5, and most are being held in Featheringill Hall. The keynote speaker, Morris H. Morgan III, professor of chemical engineering at Hampton University in Hampton, Va., and his wife, Hampton University Professor of Mathematics Carolyn Morgan, also will speak at noon at Vanderbilt’s Black Cultural Center.

Morris H. Morgan III earned his bachelor’s degree in chemical engineering from Vanderbilt in 1969 and earned his Ph.D. in chemical engineering from Rensselaer Polytechnic Institute in 1978. He was Hampton School of Engineering and Technology’s dean from 1998-2004, overseeing the opening of the school’s Virtual Parts Manufacturing Center and NASA-funded Aero-Propulsion Center. His Engineering Day lecture will be in Featheringill Hall 134 at 6 p.m.

Carolyn Morgan (submitted)

Carolyn Morgan, who also earned her bachelor’s degree from Vanderbilt in 1969, will join her husband for the noon lecture. Both lectures are titled “A Vanderbilt Education – Insight, Innovation, Impact and Integration” and will cover attending Vanderbilt as African-American students in the civil rights era and how their time here encouraged them into STEM fields.

This year, Engineering Day features a service project: Using soldering and other skills to assemble ECG kits for Engineering World Health volunteers to use in developing countries. The simplest activity is a paper airplane contest, and the tastiest one is a station where participants can see how liquid nitrogen is used to make ice cream treats.

Meredith Huszagh, a fourth-year biomedical engineering major and chair of Vanderbilt’s Engineering Council, said organizers’ goal was to find activities that every student could enjoy.

“By tapping into widespread interests, we can draw the highest number of students,” she said. “Our participating organizations have been really responsive, and we’ve found groups with individual skills and talents to help out.”

For example, the Design Studio team will offer 30-minute modules, one after the other, to get students using 3D printers – a lesson those in some disciplines might not otherwise experience until their Senior Design projects.

“We want as many students as possible to get a general understanding of the tools you need to start designing,” she said. “Most people really love 3D printing once they know how easy it is.”

Here is the complete schedule:

  • 11 a.m.-2 p.m. Medical kit building in FGH 246
  • 2-4 p.m. Paper airplane contest in FGH atrium
  • 2-4 p.m. Liquid nitrogen ice cream-making in FGH atrium
  • 3-6 p.m. 3D printing workshop in the Design Studio
  • 6-7 p.m. Morris H. Morgan III’s “A Vanderbilt Education – Insight, Innovation, Impact and Integration” lecture in FGH134
  • 7-8 p.m. Maggiano’s dinner in FGH atrium

Sponsoring organizations are: Engineering World Health, National Society of Black Engineers, Biomedical Engineering Society, Theta Tau, American Society of Mechanical Engineers, American Institute of Chemical Engineers, Design Studio and the Engineering Council.


Heidi Hall, (615) 322-6614
On Twitter @VUEngineering