Gannon Engineering Students Win Innovation Showcase Prizes

Posted: April 19, 2017

When the engineering students of the Gannon University Robotic Development Team (GUBotDev) won the 2017 Erie Collegiate Innovation Showcase they were rewarded for thinking big-and thinking small.

The team of Nick Devine and Jeremy Korte, both electrical engineering majors, and software engineering major Steven Rowland, presented their ten-foot-tall 3D printer in the "Shark Tank"-type competition held April 6. That device, designed and built by the team, is, according to Rowland "definitely among the three biggest filament printers in the world, from what we can find."

For good measure, the team also demonstrated a printer, small enough to fit on a desktop, that they designed and built for only $100. It was a winning combination for the competition involving two teams each from Gannon, Edinboro University of Pennsylvania and Penn State Behrend.

For their ingenuity, the GUBotDev team, won the $3,000 cash grand prize based on the criteria of feasibility, creativity and quality of presentation.

Designed to accommodate objects up to six feet in length and three feet in diameter, the printer has the capability to create whole entire wing assemblies for radio-controlled model airplanes, and even to create human statues out of plastic filament. The printer can be assembled in just 45 minutes.

The second Gannon team, dubbed Cheers!, the name of a social app they designed, also won, receiving six months of incubation services at Gannon's Erie Technology Incubator, including office space, a customized mentor team, one-on-one coaching and access to technology at Gannon's Center for Business Ingenuity.

The GUBotDev team was advised by Mark Blair, instructor in computer and information science, while the Cheers! team was advised by Kurt Hersch, instructor in entrepreneurship, both of Gannon University's College of Engineering and Business. Members of the Cheers! team were Nate Carlin, Steve Caulfield, Michael Frio, Matthew Gawlik, Jimmy Gruss, Gregory Incardona, Marco Orlando, Andrew Peirson and Josh Reynolds.