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Group of engineering senior design students holding a prototype

Students solving real problems

Senior Design Clinic

Senior Design Clinic

In their senior year, engineering teams take part in a two-semester capstone in which they use their knowledge from engineering and liberal arts courses to solve important problems. Multi-disciplinary teams are given the opportunity to demonstrate the designs they developed in partnership with industry sponsors, non-profits and community partners. From small start-ups to the largest companies in the Twin Cities, all find value in the unique solutions and our students shine while seeing their ideas come to fruition. Outcomes for students include networking with industry organizations and professionals, practical experience through the design cycle, the confidence that comes with real experience, and sometimes even job offers or their names included on patents.

The Design Clinic culminates with the Senior Design Show a great opportunity to showcase each team’s work to family, friends, peers and industry leaders.

students work together on their senior design clinic

From Problem to Solution

Our Senior Design Clinic offers an outstanding capstone opportunity for students to communicate and interact with clients who have real needs that requires use of their skills to go from concept to design and test.

A Unique Program

Multi-Disciplinary Teams

Students gain experience working in multidisciplinary teams, which mimics the setting they will see when they finish school.

Full Design Cycle

Students tackle the full design cycle, from concept to completion using computational models or testing of physical devices built by the team.

Global Summers (Capstone Abroad)

Tommies learn to solve problems for diverse cultures by living abroad while investigating a real local problem; they create a solution after returning to St. Thomas.


Sponsor a senior design project

This is an outstanding educational experience for these graduating engineers, and provides many benefits for local businesses and organizations.

All inventions and patents resulting from projects are the sole property of the sponsor. This favorable intellectual property policy brings many of our partners back year after year for fresh student ideas on their innovative project needs.

To find out more about how companies or non-profit organizations can get involved with the Senior Design Clinic at St. Thomas, reach out to Dr. Tiffany Ling (Lead Instructor) at ling1596@stthomas.edu or call our main office at (651) 962-5750.

Past Projects

Every year, our students tackle an impressive list of projects in the fields of civil, computer, electrical, and mechanical engineering.

Our spring 2021 Senior Design Clinic Show was held virtually via Zoom webinar format on Friday, May 7th, 2021

Twenty-six teams of students presented a three to four minute video showcasing their senior design project followed by a few minutes of Q & A. There were two simultaneous webinars (session #1 and session #2) that ran from 3:00 to 5:00 PM.

Session #1 presentation schedule:
3:04 Team 2: Advanced Oscillation Measurement Device - Pelvital
3:13 Team 9: Implant Recharging System - Medtronic
3:22 Team 3: Automated Vacuum Pressure Tester - Graco
3:31 Team10: Automated Trimmer Robot - The Toro Company
3:40 Team 4: Packaging Line Automation - Upsher-Smith
3:49 Team 11: Sensor System for Heat Related Tragedies - company confidential
3:58 Team 8: Fill Tube Crimper Redesign - Emerson
4:07 Team 12: D-Up - JockLab
4:16 Team 15: Optical Haze Meter - 3M
4:25 Team 13: Active Bass Guitar Embedded Equalizer - eMAG Systems
4:34 Team 16: Vehicle Environment Simulation Device
4:43 Team 14: Environmental Monitoring in Andean Greenhouses - AASD
4:52 Team 20: Manufacturing Process Improvement of Quinoa Threshers - AASD

View the session #1 video.

Session #2 presentation schedule:
3:04 Team 1: Automated Braid Annealer - Teleflex Medical OEM
3:13 Team 18: Smart Jewelry: Manufacturing and Assembly Optimization - Teqnizan
3:22 Team 5: DPS Lift System - Polar Semiconductor
3:31 Team 19: Reconstruction of the Vernon Avenue Bridge - TKDA
3:40 Team 17: PSL Cassette Alignment Checker - Polar Semiconductor
3:49 Team 23: Affordable Hilling and Plastic Mulch Laying Machine – Hmong American Farmers Association
3:58 Team 7: Foam in Place Machine Update - nVent
4:07 Team 21: Affordable User Centered Redesign of Basic Utility Vehicle – St. Thomas
4:16 Team 25: Metal Cutting Thermal Model Validation – Third Wave Systems
4:25 Team 22: Demonstration for Bus-Mounted Bike Rack – Metro Transit
4:43 Team 6: Time Response Test Setup - Collins
4:52 Team 24: Seeder Improvement – Pillsbury United Communities

View the session #2 video.

Fall/Spring Senior Design Teams
1. Lower Body Differential Pressure - Mayo
2. Lever Actuated Tendyne Delivery System - Abbott
3. Implant Recharging System - Medtronic
4. Land-It® - 3M - Stationary & Office Supplies
5. Autonomous Mobile Robot Customization - Supply Chain Services
6. Sensor System to Prevent Heat-related Tragedies in Passenger Vehicles - Company Confidential
7. Sound Analysis for HVAC Equipment - Trane
8. HRST Online Monitoring System Display - HRST
(View Senior Design Project Video.)
9. RPS Drill Robot - Horizon Roofing
10. Green Clamping - Wilson
11. Trash Can Seam Lock Automation - Behrens
(View Senior Design Project Video.)
12. Process Sensorization for the Industrial Internet of Things—Cut Performance of Cubitron™ II - 3M - Corporate Research Process Laboratory
13. Expandable Probe - Pelvital
14. Shipwreck Cargo Exchange Exhibit Design - Minnesota Children's Museum
15. Oak Park Outdoor Improvement - Rainwater Management - Pillsbury United Communities
16. Oak Park Outdoor Improvement - Freight Farm Re-Design - Pillsbury United Communities
17. Basic Utility Vehicle - University of St. Thomas
18. Off-Grid Milk Cooling - Partners in Food Solutions
19. Pressure Sensor Design for Aerospace Test Equipment - Collins Aerospace
20. Liquid Sensor Pressure Testing Vessel - Emerson
21. Constant Velocity Test Duct - 3M - Commercial Solutions
22. Fire Protection Testing Equipment - 3M - Fire Protection
23. Double Hung Sash Quality Improvement - Andersen
24. New Slug Ejector Concept - Wilson
25. Fill Tube Crimper Redesign – Emerson
(View Senior Design Project Video.)
Summer/Fall Senior Design Teams
A. Robotic Heat Welder - Horizon Roofing
B. Super Air Knife Exit Flow Characterization - 3M
C. Exterior Treat Drip Mitigation - Andersen
D. Sanitary Welding Vertical Integration - Graco
E. Tactile Diagram Scanner - Minnesota State Services for the Blind
F. Jameed Dehydrator - Jordanian Women's Cooperative
G. Transforming Organic Material in the Andes of Peru - Andean Alliance for Sustainable Development

Fall/Spring Senior Design Teams
1. EEG Eyewear Medibotics2. Brussels Sprouts Harvester - Hmong American Farmers Association
3. Antlights: Innovative Bicycle Safety Lighting Medibotics
4. Smart Temperature Sensor Heat Dissipation Emerson
5. Implanted Drug Pump Refill - Medtronic
6. Basic Utility Vehicle Design Competition - St. Thomas
7. Next Generation Soil Conditioning Apparatus - Universal Engineering Services
8. 3M Air Filter High Velocity Retention - 3M
9. Clean Energy Microgrid Customer Kiosk - EarthSpark
10. Pelvital Test Fixture - Pelvital USA
11. Dispense Valve Test Fixture - Graco Inc.
12. Dynamic Orientation System - Accraply
13. Ultrasonic Transducer Research - General Dynamics
14. Maize Bran Dryer for Tanzania - Partners in Food Solutions
15. Midwest Solar - Pinnacle Engineering
16. Electrical sensing for treatment of Atrial Fibrillation - Medtronic
17. Smart Campus Technologies IoT - St. Thomas Information Technology
18. Ranger XP® 1000 EPS NorthStar System Optimization - Polaris
19. Material Properties in Welded Joints - Emerson
20. Multi-Camera 3D Reconstruction - Park Industries
21. Generator Acoustical Barrier Great River Energy
22. Tactile Diagram Scanner - Minnesota State Services for the Blind
23. Driver Monitoring System - VSI Labs
24. Ophthalmic Microshunt Implant Tool - MicroOptx, Inc.
25. Structural Heart Erosion Assessment Test Method - Abbott
26. Coupling Robustness Tester Colder Products Company
27. Silicon Wafer Handling System - Polar Semiconductor
28. Orthodontic Aligner Removal Force Measurement - 3M
29. Energy Harvesting Fan Drive - Horton, Inc.
Summer/Fall Senior Design Teams
A. Laser Slug Detection and Removal System – nVent
B. Lower Body Differential Pressure Device – Mayo Clinic
C. Integrated Tether Load System – Tendyne
D. Automatic Bacon Belly De-combing System - Hoegger Food Technology
E. Biomass Gasification Test System Upgrade and Operation – Cummins
F. Hey, Count Me In! - Wilson Tool
G. Dehydration System for Jameed Production - Jordanian Women’s Co-operative